In honor of National Iced Tea Month, here is some interesting information from a press release sent by The Tea Association of America, from their website, TEAUSA. This is the essence of what the press release says:
Next to water, tea is the most widely consumed beverage in the world. In 2010 Americans consumed over 3 billion gallons of tea. According to The Tea Association of America, 85% of that tea was drunk iced.
Iced tea is a healthier choice than sodas or other sugary beverages for hydration during warm weather. It consists mostly of water but includes healthy antioxidants as well. Along with a healthy diet and a good exercise program, it may boost weight loss efforts. More information about the health properties of tea can be found at Tea USA.
Although studies have shown that tea is good for one’s health in many ways, it should be noted that the FDA has yet to recognize these studies as proof of tea’s healthy qualities. Even so, no one could dispute that consuming less sugar by drinking iced tea instead of sodas is in itself a step in a healthier direction.
Regardless of the health factor, the best reason to drink it in warm weather is for the sheer pleasure of it. Tea presents its own world of flavors to appreciate and enjoy without adding a thing to it. In addition, it accepts added flavors from fruits, herbs, and spices that increase the variety of tastes available. If one gets a healthier body in the process, that is a bonus.
There are many methods of making iced tea. The recipe below is the one suggested by The Tea Association of America. Readers will find many other interesting facts about tea on their website.
Refreshing Iced Tea Recipe
- For small quantities, bring fresh cold tap water to a full, rolling boil. Use 50% more tea than if you were preparing hot tea to allow for dilution by ice. For example, use one and a half teaspoonfuls of loose tea or one and one half tea bags per cup (five to eight ounces) of water.
- Pour the boiling water over the tea. Brew three to five minutes. If you prefer your tea less strong, add more water after brewing. Pour over ice.
- For large quantities, prepare a concentrate as follows: Bring one quart of cold water to a rolling boil. Remove from heat and add 8-10 tea bags per quart of brewed tea desired.Steep three to five minutes and add ice cubes. To serve, pour into tall glasses filled with ice, garnish and sweeten as desired.
- For extra flavor add your favorite fruit, such as lemons, limes or even peaches.
The Tea Association of America is an organization consisting of some of the most knowledgeable people in America on the subject of tea. Their general purpose is to help the tea industry in the USA.They help set industry standards and provide tea education. The Specialty Tea Institute, an organization that trains tea certified tea specialists, is part of Tea USA.