I love coffee and couldn’t imagine facing the day without that first cup. I also wouldn’t want to give up my daily afternoon latte, but with the exception of those two daily cups, I really am a tea drinker at heart. There’s just something soothing and therapeutic about a good cup of tea.

Health benefits of tea

There is plenty of research that shows that tea has amazing health benefits. From green tea to hibiscus, from white tea to chamomile, tea is chock full of antioxidants, phytochemicals and flavonoids. Depending on which type of tea you drink, tea can help lower blood pressure, stop the growth of cancer cells, and improve digestion.

Tea is good for the soul

But drinking a cup of tea doesn’t just make your body feel better, it’s also good for your soul. According to the legendary eighth-century tea master Lu Yu, author of The Classic of Tea: “Tea tempers the spirit and harmonizes the mind, dispels lassitude and relieves fatigue, awakens thought and prevents drowsiness.”

Tea offers comfort. There’s a reason why there’s an entire series of books titled “A Cup of Comfort”. Sitting down with a good friend and a good cup of tea creates an instant feeling of connection. The worries of the world don’t seem so daunting when they’re addressed over tea.

Tea can also serve as a signal to slow down a bit, especially if you turn preparing a cup of tea into a ritual. In Ritual Tea: How the 9 Secrets of Tea Can Transform You Life, author Mario Zeleny, a lifelong tea lover and personal coach, extracts the magic of tea from its history, uses, and benefits, but also from its power to change the world. Tea rituals can be a form of mindfulness meditation.

A surprise gift of tea

I recently received an email with the subject line “May I pour you a cup of tea?” I was intrigued. The email came from Andy Hayes, the founder and creator of Plum Deluxe, a website that helps people create moments that matter. Andy started the site to share the lessons he learned from his mother, who lost her 6 year battle with breast cancer. “Those 6 years were the best years of her life,” wrote Andy. “Her fitness improved, she spent a lot of time with friends and traveling, and her positivity was off the charts. My hope is to help others live a good life without the need for a major life event.”

In an effort to further connect with his community, Andy also launched his own line of organic, fair trade loose leaf teas. He sent me three samples, and they’re some of the most delicious teas I’ve ever had. I asked for herbal blends since I don’t drink caffeinated tea or coffee. The “Sunshine in a Cup,” Self Care” and “Cuddletime Sleepy” blends are all equally heavenly.

Tea for cats?

Even though most cats probably won’t like tea (Allegra and Ruby sure don’t) and  would much prefer the cream the kitty in the photo above is enjoying (and no, milk is not good for cats – most cats can’t digest it well), some cats do seem to enjoy peppermint tea. Peppermint is a close relative to catnip, which may explain the attraction. I haven’t tried it, but you could brew tea for kitty from dried catnip. Just make sure you let it cool off enough before offering it to her.

Do you love tea? What’s your favorite?

For more about Plum Deluxe teas, and on how to make moments matter, please visit

tea set

17 Comments on Sunday Purrs: Tea for the Soul

  1. I have a Siamese cat named Momo, that will knock over my glass of iced tea for a drink. I try to make sure it is out of his way, but some times he outsmarts me. Needless to say, he loves it and I try to make sure he only haves a few sips.

  2. I love tea! Other than water, it is all I drink. My favorite is a good, sturdy breakfast blend (Scottish or Irish breakfast), or just a straight Assam or Ceylon. I drink it unaldulterated…no sugar or milk. I like it hot in cooler weather, but my go-to is iced tea, especially with lunch or in the afternoon. I brew it double strength, add cool water to make it regular strength, then pour over ice. I keep trying to like green tea, but so far, no luck!

  3. Years ago, I fell in love with Starbucks Green Tea Lattes, made with Matcha Green Tea. But they got pretty expensive, so I found a source for purchasing the Matcha green tea powder, and now I make my own using water an soy milk and a little agave. I usually drink about 32 oz a day, and instead of paying over $ 5 for each one, I’m probably spending about $.75. I LOVE the benefits of green tea, and Matcha tea is one of the higher quality green teas available. Thanks for the post, Ingrid.

      • Ingrid . . . if you try it, go to Starbucks and order a Green Tea latte. You can get it with regular milk, skim milk, non-fat milk, or soy milk. They add sweetener, but I prefer soy milk and 1 squirt of their classic sweetener. Less sweet than their usual 3 squirts, and very tasty. You can get it hot or iced.

  4. I am currently a one to two cup of coffee a day lady, but now I feel like a lovely cup of tea! When I was younger, I drank tea all the time – we had one of those stainless steel baskets that you would put the tea leaves in to let it seep. I always loved Darjeeling.

  5. I do love tea! Decaf Chai tea by Tao in the morning. during the day fruity or herbal teas from Teavana. I also don’t drink caffeine. Teavana made a winter berry that was absolutely delicious.

  6. I always say I will start drinking more tea. I usually only have a cup in the mornings. I like a spicy flavored tea like chai. This week, I’m drinking one called India spice.

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