Puerh tea has been used in traditional Chinese medicine for centuries. In fact, it’s because of all the health benefits of puerh tea that the tea is called the “Drinkable Antique”.
Based on scientific evidence, we’ve listed the top 12 puerh tea health benefits for you. Drinking a cup of this tea regularly is sure to work wonders!
- Decreases Blood Sugar Levels
- Promotes Skin Health
- Reduces Anxiety
- Reduces Obesity and Aids in Weight Loss
- Filters Toxins
- Improves Bone Health
- Protects Against Gastric Mucosal Injury
- Has Anti-Inflammatory Properties
- Lowers Cholesterol
- Improves Metabolic Syndrome
- Protects the Nervous System
- Increases Energy
Decreases Blood Sugar Levels
According to the 34.2 million Americans have diabetes, while 88 million American adults are in the pre-diabetic stage. Also, new type 1 and type 2 diabetes cases have increased among Americans younger than 20 years.
An anti-diabetic drug named “Acarbose” or “Precose” is typically used to treat pre-diabetes and type 2 diabetes mellitus. But this drug usually comes with many side effects, including diarrhea and excessive flatulence (having gas).
In 2015, the 5th issue of the journal published a report, stating that pu-erh tea polysaccharide (PTPS) can be a much better alternative to acarbose.
After conducting preliminary experiments on mice, the researchers found that PTPS might suppress blood glucose, especially alpha-glucosidase, better than acarbose can. These findings prove that puerh tea benefits diabetes maintenance.
Promotes Skin Health
There are several puerh tea benefits for skin. For instance, puerh tea reduces the effects of sun damage on your skin to keep it healthy. The loss of elastin in your skin makes the skin age, but puerh tea protects the elastin as well.
Plus, the antimicrobial and antioxidant characteristics of puerh tea make it an excellent ingredient of anti-aging products and skincare cosmetics.
A 2019 study examined and analyzed the antioxidant and antibacterial capacities of raw and ripened puerh tea. For this purpose, they used hydro-alcoholic and aqueous extracts of both the tea types.
The results were promising – both ripened and raw puerh extracts suppress the growth of (dangerous bacteria that can cause skin infections). That’s why drinking puerh tea regularly may clear up acne and purify your skin.
Anxiety disorders affect around 18.1% of the American population every year. So, it’s no surprise that anxiety disorders are the most common mental illness in the U.S.
When you experience minor aches and pains from being stressed out, puerh tea can help you relax and reduce stress in the process.
In fact, puerh tea contains phytochemicals like gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA), which has relaxing effects and contributes to lower stress levels. Enjoy a soothing cup of puerh tea daily to help relieve stress, and sleep soundly throughout the night.
Reduces Obesity and Aids in Weight Loss
Another of the health benefits of puerh tea is that it makes your body stop producing higher fat levels. In this way, it suppresses the synthesis of fatty acids. So, if you combine regular exercise and a healthy diet with puerh tea consumption, you may be able to lose weight.
In 2019, a group of scientists determined that swinging exercise, along with puerh tea containing theabrownin, can reduce obesity in rats. The rats were fed a diet high in salts, fat, and sugar. Some of these rats were made to do swinging exercises for 30 minutes daily, while the others didn’t exercise at all.
The puerh theabrownin was found to prevent insulin resistance and obesity in the rats. In turn, the dopamine levels in the rats increased after the swinging exercise.
Another study in 2019 suggested drinking puerh tea benefits weight loss as well as helping reduce obesity. Researchers induced some mice with a high-fat diet, which made the animals obese and increased their body weight as well as liver and adipose tissue weight.
Next, the researchers administered puerh tea to the mice for 22 weeks. The results showed that the puerh tea treatment had significantly reduced the body weight, adipose weight, and liver weight of the mice.
Moreover, puerh tea regulated fatty acid (FA) metabolism in obesity. These findings, the researchers hoped, would lead to new therapeutic approaches towards treating obesity.
Traditional Chinese medicine has been using puerh tea to help the stomach and the spleen filter toxins throughout the body. By clearing out toxins, the simple sugars and microorganisms in puerh tea cleanse your blood.
Puerh tea also contains plenty of natural compounds that help deliver increased oxygen levels to your brain and other body parts.
This enhances blood circulation, allowing puerh tea to reduce free radicals that can otherwise cause serious illnesses. And the better the blood flow, the better will be your overall health!
Improves Bone Health
As you age, your bones become weak and brittle, leading to a condition named osteoporosis. In severe cases, you may even get hospitalized due to this bone condition.
Bones may weaken due to several reasons, like a lack of essential minerals and vitamins (including vitamin D and calcium), hormonal changes brought about during menopause, or just plain inactivity.
In 2017, scientists in China experimented to determine whether Puerh tea extract (PTE) can reduce ovariectomy-induced osteoporosis in female Wistar rats. For this reason, various concentrations of PTE and distilled water were administered to the rats for 13 weeks.
The scientists analyzed the femoral bone mineral density (BMD) and bone biomechanical properties of the rats, among other things.
Thirteen weeks later, they found that the rats’ PTE treatment had maintained steady amounts of phosphorus and calcium, apart from improving bone biomechanical properties and femoral BMD. This experiment proved that puerh tea can reduce osteoporosis in rats and suppress the formation of bone-degrading cells.
Protects Against Gastric Mucosal Injury
In 2018, some scientists studied whether puerh tea extracts can protect against ethanol-induced gastric mucosal damage in Sprague Dawley rats.
The rats’ groups were treated with either distilled water, green tea powder, or puerh tea extracts for 14 days.
Then, the scientists orally administered absolute ethanol to all the rats. What they found was astonishing – the anti-gastric ulcer activity of puerh tea was more than that of green tea.
The puerh tea extracts also suppressed the formation of gastric lesions in the rats. These effects showed that puerh tea plays a role in protecting the gastric mucus layer.
Has Anti-Inflammatory Properties
Some compounds, like neoechinulin A and asperglaucide, are found in high amounts in both ripened and raw puerh tea. Microbes involved in puerh’s fermentation process produce these compounds, which are known to have anti-inflammatory properties.
For example, researchers in 2016 found that the anti-inflammatory effects of asperglaucide prevent cartilage from getting degraded.
In a study conducted in 2018, researchers determined that drinking puerh tea reduces atherosclerosis (the buildup of fats and cholesterol on the walls of your arteries).
For 6 weeks, a standard chow diet was fed to mice, and after that time, the mice were switched to a diet containing 0.15% cholesterol and 21% fat. The researchers also administered puerh tea to the mice for 8-16 weeks.
They found that puerh tea consumption not only minimizes early fatty streak formation, but also reduces the sizes of advanced fibrofatty plaques.
Improves Metabolic Syndrome
Insulin resistance, high blood pressure, excess belly fat, and a cluster of other health problems are common characteristics of metabolic syndrome. That’s why it’s known to raise your risk of type 2 diabetes.
Thankfully, puerh tea may help to manage metabolic syndrome. According to a 2017 study, post-fermented puerh tea, rich in caffeine and polyphenol, improves metabolic syndrome. The scientists who conducted the study fed some mice with a high-fat diet (HFD). Later, they found that the puerh tea had improved the lipid and glucose metabolism disorder in the HFD-fed mice.
A more recent study, published in 2020, found that puerh tea extract (PTE) can modulate metabolomic and microbiomic responses. As a result, PTE can reduce liver and colon damage caused by chronic alcohol consumption.
Protects the Nervous System
The nerve cells inside your brain release a very powerful neurotransmitter called “glutamate”. It plays a vital role in your learning, perception, and memory.
But an excessive amount of glutamate leads to massive brain damage, which stops your brain from processing relevant information.
A 2016 study, though, proved that puerh tea has beneficial effects on the nervous system.
For instance, in the survey, puerh tea relieved rat epilepsy, protected neural cells from necrosis, and reduced the expression of metabotropic glutamate receptor 5 (mGluR5) in the hippocampus (a part of your brain that regulates learning, memory, motivation, and emotion).
The researchers of the study concluded that puerh tea is a natural neuroprotective agent.
Drinking a cup of puerh tea every day can improve your mental focus and increase your energy levels, thanks to the caffeine present in the tea.
A standard cup of coffee contains 105 milligrams of caffeine, compared to the 60-70 milligrams in an 8-ounce cup of puerh tea.
So, if you’re one of those who become too restless after only a cup of coffee or so, puer tea is just the right beverage for you! It lets you relax, and then gives you an extra boost without a caffeine crash, so you can make it through a tiring day.
Puerh Tea Side Effects and Precautions
Even though puerh tea contains lower caffeine levels than other types of tea, consuming too much caffeine may cause headaches, dizziness, diarrhea, heartburn, insomnia, and other side effects.
More importantly, please keep in mind that if you’re suffering from any of the above health conditions, like high cholesterol or diabetes, you shouldn’t use puerh tea as a substitute for standard treatment. It’s always better to consult your physician first.
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