Antioxidants in tea – Green tea vs Rooibos


Antioxidant is a fashionable buzzword in the marketing of food and drink products here in the UK. We’ve all picked up on the fact they’re meant to be good for us and are now buying into the idea we should be consuming products with high levels of antioxidants to improve our health. Green tea and rooibos tea are two such products, so how do they compare?

Research has been done into the potential of antioxidants for disease prevention, in particular cancer and heart disease. Antioxidants are found in varying levels in fruit, vegetables, grains, nuts and other foods.

green tea

Green tea is made from unfermented leaves from the camellia sinesis plant and of the teas derived from this plant (green, black and white) it is thought to have the highest concentrations of antioxidants. Green tea is often perceived by consumers as a healthy equivalent to everyday black tea but many consumers do not realise that green tea contains caffeine.

glowing mama

Rooibos tea (or red bush tea) is derived from the rooibos plant in South Africa. Rooibos tea has long been consumed in South Africa (often with milk and sugar) but it’s popularity as a healthy beverage is now spreading. It also has high levels of antioxidants but it has no caffeine and low tannin levels compared to black or green tea. The South African Rooibos Council are conducting various interesting pieces of research into the health benefits of rooibos.

So in short as a healthy tea option rooibos tea wins! Both green tea and rooibos have high levels of antioxidants (although I have been unable to find figures to clarify exactly what this means) but rooibos has no caffeine whereas green tea has. Time for a cup of Glowing Mama I think…

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10 thoughts on “Antioxidants in tea – Green tea vs Rooibos

  1. Pingback: GREEN TEA BABY 1 « talesbycindy

  2. Pingback: Rooibos Tea | Celebrity Diet and Weight Loss Blog

  3. Most of the rooibos that you find in the U.S. is red rooibos, which is oxidized (not fermented) just like a black tea. Un-oxidized “green” rooibos has a flavor profile closer to green tea, and proponents claim a higher antioxidant content although actual research results are scanty and inconsistent.

    I attended a couple of antioxidant seminars at the World Tea Expo a couple of weeks ago, and they didn’t look at rooibos at all, unfortunately. They did, however, show that most of the currently-published information about antioxidants is all wrong. There are black, white, oolong, and pu-erh teas that have more antioxidants than the average green tea! I’ll be writing a more detailed post about it soon.

    If you’re interested, I wrote a blog post about green rooibos on the “Tea With Gary” site: http://teawithgary.wordpress.com/2011/08/04/ill-have-a-green-red-tea-please/

  4. Pingback: Glowing Mama – our beautiful and tasty rooibos tea | Mama Tea's Blog

  5. I love the flavour of Red Rooibos tea as well as the fact that it has no caffeine. Recently I was introduced to Red Rooibos tea that is “infused” with Reishi (ganoderma lucidum) – now we are talking tea! Really healthy tea!

  6. I was told by my chiropractor to drink 4 cups of rooibos per day because it is a good source of magnesium, which helps keep muscles loose and flexible. I work out alot and struggle with tight muscles and muscle knots.

  7. I’m pretty pleased to discover this great site. I want to to thank you for ones time just for this wonderful read!! I definitely liked every part of it and I have you book-marked to see new information in your blog.

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