People have been enjoying jasmine tea for many centuries. Both tea and jasmine were cultivated in China during the Tang Dynasty (618-907), and people may have drunk jasmine tea even before that time. For many people, drinking jasmine tea is a pleasurable experience. It may also have health benefits.
Although some people make jasmine tea with oolong or black tea, the traditional brew uses green tea leaves. In the classic method, growers layer green tea leaves with jasmine blossoms. They remove and replace the flowers until their fragrance infuses the tea. Although the scent of jasmine adds another dimension to the tea-drinking experience, most health benefits of jasmine tea come from the tea itself.
Like many teas, jasmine tea has no nutritive value unless you add milk, sugar, or other food substances to it.
One cup of jasmine tea contains:
- Calories: 0
- Protein: 0 grams
- Fat: 0 grams
- Carbohydrates: 0 grams
- Fiber: 0 grams
- Sugar: 0 grams
Jasmine tea also contains some vitamins and minerals that come from the green tea leaves:
You can find these nutrients in jasmine tea mostly in trace quantities or small amounts.
Potential Health Benefits of Jasmine Tea
While studies have pointed to some health benefits to drinking jasmine tea, the positive effects come primarily from the green tea. Green tea is rich in antioxidants, including a type called catechins. Scientists are especially interested in one particular catechin: epigallocatechin gallate or EGCG.
The benefits shown in some studies may be hard for you to duplicate. Some study subjects drank multiple cups of tea a day. Several studies used green tea extract instead of brewed tea. Still, drinking one or several cups of jasmine tea a day is unlikely to harm you and could offer the following health benefits:
Lower Risk of Cancer
While green tea extracts have prevented tumors in various animal studies, scientists have failed to consistently duplicate these results in human studies. Still, some scientists believe green tea can reduce the risk of cancer. They think the many variables in human studies make it difficult to prove and that the topic needs more research.
Green tea extract may slow the progress of chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) (a type of cancer that affects blood and bone marrow). Researchers first did laboratory studies, then confirmed the effect with a human study. They believe that the EGCG in green tea is responsible for the effect. The use of green tea extract could allow those with CLL to delay more aggressive treatments such as chemotherapy.
Effects on Mood
In one study, the fragrance of jasmine tea improved mood. The aroma also had a calming effect on the autonomous nervous system, which controls breathing, heart rate, and digestion. The experiment was repeated with linalool, a compound that contributes to the odor of jasmine.
Lower Risk of Heart Disease
Multiple studies have shown that drinking green tea reduces your risk of heart attack and stroke. Other studies have shown that green tea lowers triglycerides and LDL cholesterol, the “bad” cholesterol.
Potential Risks of Jasmine Tea
Jasmine tea and other green teas are safe for most people to drink in amounts up to 8 cups a day.
However, there are still some possible risks.
Green tea contains oxalates, compounds found in many plants. Oxalates bind with calcium. When this occurs in the body, kidney stones may form.
Green tea extract is connected to 24 cases of liver damage, according to one report. If you have concerns about liver health, talk to your doctor before using green tea extracts or drinking jasmine tea.
The caffeine in green tea can cause sleep difficulty. To avoid insomnia, consume green tea early in the day. The caffeine content of jasmine tea can vary according to how you brew it, but it is usually around one-third of the caffeine content of coffee. Green tea also contains less caffeine than black tea.
The caffeine in green tea can cause some people to feel nervous or jittery. Also, caffeine can affect the heart, causing the heartbeat to become fast or irregular. If you experience any of these symptoms, consult your doctor. If you have a history of heart problems, talk to your doctor before consuming green tea.