Did you know that not all teas are created equal? In fact, some teas that present themselves as “healthy” have been found to contain high levels of fluoride and pesticides.
How does fluoride get into your tea, you might ask? When the tea plant grows, it easily absorbs fluoride from the soil and stores it in it’s leaves. However, fluoride levels in tea vary as various types of tea are processed differently. Unfortunately, 94.9% of the fluoride in a cup of tea is directly absorbed by the body causing various health problems.
The Quality of the Tea Matters
This is why the quality of the tea may be the most important factor to look at since higher quality correlates with less toxins such as fluoride. So how do you get the health benefits from drinking tea without the fluoride?
Research finds that “White teas” have the least fluoride and most antioxidants. Popular brands like Lipton, Nestea, and Arizona contain twice as much fluoride as public water as they use older, lower-quality sources of tea.
Why Green Tea is Most Toxic
It is important to note that certain varieties of tea contain more fluoride than others:
1. Decaffeinated Teas Have More Fluoride: In the Caries Research study researchers found that decaffeinated teas contained the most fluoride. A previous study has reported the mean fluoride (F) level of decaffeinated tea infusions, 3.19 ppm, is significantly (P<0.01) higher than those of caffeinated tea infusions, 1.74 ppm. This is due to the fact that tea leaves are exposed to high volumes of fluoridated water during the decaffeination process.
2. Green Tea Has the Highest Concentrations of Fluoride: This is due to the fact that tea leaves are exposed to very high levels of fluoride as they age. Green tea leaves take the longest to cultivate. For instance, Matcha green tea powder had the highest concentration of fluoride. Most teas contain a higher fluoride concentration than optimally fluoridated water (0.7 mg/L). (study)