When I’m sick, I’ll reach for anything that can make me feel better right now and keep me from getting sick again any time soon. Sometimes that’s a large dose of NyQuil (sorry, not sorry), but more often it involves large cups of tea. Tea just always makes me feel better, because it warms me up inside, but it wasn’t until I did some research that I realized there’s more to tea than that.
While it hasn’t been studied a lot, various forms of tea are thought to help support your immune system so you don’t deal with nasty colds and flu as often. Tea is often used in Chinese medicine, and Elizabeth Trattner, AP, an expert in Chinese and integrative medicine, recommends it to clients often for a variety of things, including as a tool to safeguard the immune system.
Trattner explained to POPSUGAR that the teas that can help you feel the best are packed with antioxidant properties, and the level of catechins in a specific tea can be most helpful. Simply put, catechins are antioxidant compounds that can be antiviral, according to studies. Green tea typically has the highest concentration of catechins, so as a rule of thumb, it’s a great one to reach for any time you’re feeling blah or want to give yourself a boost.
Read through for five tea options that can help keep you healthy this season, and remember, your best bet before any kind of self-treatment is to check with your doctor.