Tea Bags Vs Tea Leaves: Which Is The better Option?
The differences between loose tea leaves and tea bags have been a common point of debate among tea lovers. But, it is also important to know which one of the two options suits you better.
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One major question that haunts the mind of every avid tea drinker and newcomer alike is the difference between tea bags and tea leaves. What is a better choice? Is one better, or healthier, than the other? While both can be used to make a flavourful cup, there are still a few differences between tea bags and tea leaves. This question also comes to mind for those who like to have a cup of green tea routinely. In this case, does a cup of green tea have more health benefits when made from tea leaves as opposed to a cup made using a quick and easy tea bag? Tea bags and tea leaves, both come from the same plant, Camellia Sinensis, but the big difference lies in how they are processed and eventually packaged to be used by consumers. The process these leaves undergo makes the difference between the two quite overwhelming.
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Composition Of Loose Tea Leaves
An average packaging of loose tea leaves consists of freshly plucked leaves from a plant called Camellia sinensis, which are oxidised as per requirement. For example, some of the famous categories of tea include green tea (which does not undergo oxidation), black tea (which is a highly oxidised type of tea, hence the strong smell and black colour), and white tea (which undergoes minimal oxidation).
Composition Of Tea Bags
A particular package might contain a multiple number of tea bags, and each of these tea bags consists of what is normally known as fannings, or dust. Fannings can be referred to as the particles, or small pieces of tea, which are left behind after gathering the high grade leaves.
Tea bags and tea leaves, both come from the same plant, Camellia Sinensis, but the big difference lies in how they are processed and eventually packaged to be used by consumers.
The Difference Between Tea Bags And Loose Tea Leaves
1. Method Of Preparation
Apart from the difference in the composition of the two, it can be said that the method of preparation differ in each case.
- In the case of loose tea leaves, the water is brought to a roaring boil.
- Whereas in the case of a tea bag, as directed by the tea manufacturer, the water is brought to a temperature of 90℃, slightly below the boiling point of water.
2. Nutritional Value
The nutritional value of an item, especially an item such as tea, depends on the quality of leaves plucked in other to make it.
- Since the loose tea leaves are of a high grade quality, it can be said that they contain a higher number of nutrients and antioxidants.
- However, the crushed fannings in tea bags, being small in size, are much easier to mix. Thus, the process of transferring of nutrients or infusing requires less effort.
Due to the difference in the method of preparation, and also the difference found in the concentration of antioxidants present in both, tea bags and tea leaves, we can conclude that both, tea bags and tea leaves, would also have different effects on our health.
- Loose tea leaves, unlike tea bags, are given more space to expand, and thus can transfer more of its flavour and nutrients to the water. Thus, a tea made from a pack of loose tea leaves is an antioxidant rich caffeinated drink that packs a punch with every sip.
- The tea bags on the other hand, if left open, might lose their essence. And it is also advised to use a tea bag not more than a couple of times.
Tea Bag Vs Tea Leaves: Which One To Choose?
As it is clearly concluded that both, loose tea leaves and tea bags, are very different from each other in their manner of preparation and composition, in order to choose a right option, one must be careful.
Tea bags may be more easily available as compared to loose tea leaves, and might also be cheaper. But, a cup of tea made using tea bags might not have the same flavor factor as compared to the one made by loose tea leaves.
Tea bags are considered to be more user friendly as compared to loose tea leaves, as the method of preparation for them requires less work. Whereas, loose tea leaves are richer in antioxidants, as they are made of high grade quality leaves.
The bottom line is that loose tea leaves, processed by plucking high grade leaves, should be a better choice if someone needs to include tea in their diet, as it is more nutritional and also results in a more flavourful cup of tea.