The summer heat peaks around this time. If you live in the northeast, you’ve probably experienced one of the hottest summers last week. Just few days ago, the heat index here in Washington DC peaked at 46℃/115℉.
Unless you really like steaming hot temperatures and extremely humid air, you’d probably avoid this type of summer weather by staying indoors.
Cooling down is easy, but heatstroke prevention is not. In traditional Chinese medicine theory, heatstroke prevention is about not only lowering the body temperature, but also reducing the body humidity level.
What can be a more effective and enjoyable way of getting rid of excessive body humidity than drinking a wonderful tea? Today, let’s talk about why drinking hot tea is better in summer.
First of all, drinking cold tea or iced tea is NOT a smart choice. Sure, a cold drink in summer can make you feel cool. However, this is quite superficial and unhealthy. When we drink cold or iced beverages, our bodies have to spend extra energy to warm up vital organs such as the stomach. Also, drinking cold tea doesn’t help us reduce our body humidity (because no sweat). In fact, drinking cold beverages might even increase the risk of getting a heatstroke.
Drinking hot teas is the best way to go. One of our clients in Buffalo, NY once said “drinking a hot tea is a hot day actually makes you feel cooler”.
At first, this might sound weird because it contradicts what our common sense tells us. Different from drinking hot beverages in a cold day, drinking a hot tea in summer helps our body sweat a little. By sweating just a bit, our body temperature is lowered because the evaporation takes aways our body heat; at the same time, our body can expel unwanted body humidity and toxics.
As a result, both our body temperature and body humidity are lowered. Thus, a hot tea can effectively reduce the risk of getting a heatstroke.
Of course, this is not the sole reason why drinking a hot tea in summer is better for us. A calming tea also helps us smooth out some summer stresses we get.
In temples, monks drink more hot tea in summer to keep focused and still. The soothing aromas and tastes provide them a palace of peace and comfort. In old times, green tea was the only choice. Most temples keep the tradition till today.
But to modern tea lovers, green tea is no longer the only option. Chinese medicine defines the nature of most things as “warm”, “cold”, or “neutral” (not the temperature, but the nature of a tangible thing). When selecting a summer tea, we tend to choose more “neutral teas”.
For example, white tea and oolong tea are both neutral. Their neutral nature makes them quite popular among tea lovers.
When it comes to a summer white tea, new tea products are actually more sought-after than aged ones. New white tea products are still slightly “cold” by nature, which makes them more suitable for hot day enjoyment.
Choosing a Wuyi oolong for summer has a different path. As you might have learned, different Wuyi oolong products have different levels of roasting. An ideal summer Wuyi oolong usually has a medium roast. Famous Wuyi oolongs such as Huang Guan Yin, Golden Peony, Yellow Rose, and Que She are all good choices for a hot summer day.
After the end of July, the temperature will slowly drop to a more pleasant degree. If you find the summer weather unbearable, don’t forget to drink more hot tea to help you find the inner peace :)
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