Chai can offer many benefits. It contains black tea, so the benefits of chai include the benefits of black tea. The most commonly used teas are Indian, and sometimes Ceylon tea. African black tea may be a good option too. Besides the benefits of black tea, chai includes many health benefits of the spices too. The most common ones such as cinnamon cloves and ginger have been traditionally used in both traditional Chinese medicine and Indian Ayurvedic medicine.
Both tea and spices in chai tea are boiled for longer that you would brew your regular cup, so they have more time to release both the flavor and beneficial compounds. Keep in mind though, that the type of milk, sugar or other ingredients may influence the final benefits.
1. Energy boosting
Chai tea contains high amounts of caffeine. It’s made with black tea with broken leaves or CTC type. CTC teas are a special type of tea crushed and shaped into small pellets. Expect 1-2 times more caffeine from broken black tea particles or dust than you would from an unbroken Assam tea.
2. Antioxidant properties
Both black tea and spices may help protect the cells from oxidative stress. The most common tea base for Masala Chai is Assam tea. Studies suggest that Assam black tea has higher polyphenolic content than other Indian black teas
. Antioxidants may help protect the cells and boost the immune system.
3. Chemoprotective effect
Studies showed that both black tea and many of the spices included in chai tea may have chemo protective properties.If further research confirm the claims that black tea and spices may contribute to reducing the risk of cancer, chai tea could be a winner with combining both of them into a delicious drink.
4. Aiding Digestion
Both ginger and black pepper may be very beneficial for digestion. Studies showed that black pepper and ginger may help improve the gut health and digestion
5. Regulating cholesterol
Black tea, cinnamon, black pepper, ginger, cloves and other spices may help reduce the levels of bad cholesterol.
6. Anti inflammatory properties
Inflammation is linked to many chronic diseases, from diabetes to Alzheimer’s disease. Research showed that both black tea and spices such as ginger, turmeric, cloves, cardamom cinnamon show anti-inflammatory properties and may help in fighting many diseases.
7. Relieving stomach pain and nausea
Ginger in chai is a must. No cup of chai will ever be perfect without ginger. Ginger root is commonly used for treating different types of nausea, and vomiting. Herbal chai blends may be a better choice for upset stomach than black tea blends.
8. Heart health
Drinking black tea may reduce the risk of heart diseases and stroke. Studies showed that ginger, black pepper and cinnamon may help to support a healthy heart too.
9. Weight loss properties
The combination of black tea and chai may help in achieving weight loss goals, but be careful – the real chai contains sugar too. Meaning, you may get a very opposite effect. Furthermore, studies showed that cinnamon may help with metabolic syndrome and help lose weight, reduce bad cholesterol, blood sugar levels and fat, and blood pressure. On the other hand, black tea may help with reducing the calorie intake and enhancing fat burn
10. Protecting the brain
Studies suggest that drinking three cups of black tea per day may help protect against diseases linked to brain such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease