Tea is the most popular choice beverage in the world, second only to water. Many people will drink tea on a regular basis in order to fully achieve the many benefits that are offered in every cup of tea. But is your tea really as healthy as you think it is? Many people will be shocked to learn that the tea they steep is actually increasing their risk of disease rather than decreasing it. This is largely due to companies adding harmful additives to the tea by bleaching their tea bags in order to make them more aesthetically pleasing to consumers.
The invention of the tea bag was accidentally stumbled upon in the early 1900s when a man by the name of Thomas Sullivan sent out samples of his tea small muslin bags. When they received these bags, his customers assumed that the bags were intended to be used in the same manner that metal infusers were used at that time, so they dipped the entire bag into the hot water. Not long after, Thomas began receiving complaints from his customers who were stating that the tea could not pass easily enough through the cloth. Quickly realizing what had happened, Thomas abruptly began to patent a more efficient tea bag, which would later on come to be known as the tea bags we are familiar with today.
As tea bags evolved, many companies tried different styles and designs of tea bags which led to pillow styled tea bags, rounded tea bags, and even pyramid shaped tea bags. Different tactics were taken to make tea bags more appealing and this resulted in companies that chlorine bleached their tea bags so that customers would find the cleaner look to be more visually appealing. However, the bleaching method comes at a heavy price to consumers. Chemicals linger on tea bags that are bleached and when steeped, these chemicals seep into the water of the tea and are then ingested into the body. This exposes the body to harmful toxins like dioxin. Dioxin, a common chemical that is found on bleached tea bags, lingers in the body for up to 11 years and cannot be dispelled through the detoxification process of the liver. This chemical builds up in the fat tissues of the body where it agitates and disrupts cell distribution leading to hormonal and behavioral disorders as well as increases the body’s risk to harmful cell deformities and cancers.