January is National Hot Tea Month and Jan. 12 is National Hot Tea Day. The National Tea Council of the USA wants tea drinkers to use this month to celebrate their love of tea. One opportunity to do so is by participating in the National Tea Council’s Second Annual Photo Sharing Sweepstakes in which people can share photos and videos of their own unique ways of enjoying tea. The process is simple. Tea enthusiasts can convey their #IndividualiTEA by posting their photos and videos on Twitter with the hashtag #IndividualiTEA and tagging @TeaCouncil to be eligible to win $500 dollars and one year’s supply of tea. National Hot Tea Month honors tea as being the second most consumed beverage on Earth, as well as how a single plant, Camellia sinensis, can produce a variety of teas: white, yellow, green, black, oolong and pu-erh. The Tea Council of the USA was founded in 1950 as a nonprofit organization that facilitates a partnership among tea importers, tea packers, and other related industries in the United States and in the main tea producing countries abroad. The council also supports and shares scientific research findings on tea. It funds meetings of scientists from all over the world who gather to disseminate their knowledge and decide on future research objectives. The council also works with health organizations to distribute information about potential benefits of tea consumption to the public. A few benefits of tea according a Tea Council of the USA press release are:
- Tea is a healthy virtually calorie-free, sugar-free, fat free beverage.
- Studies have shown that tea may improve mental clarity.
- Tea could aid in the protection from several types of cancers.
- Drinking tea may support the immune system because of its theanine content.
- Drinking tea can also support cardiovascular health.