Many people believe that tea drinking is bad for children because it is bad for the spleen and stomach due to over stimulation of certain organs. Actually, this is a misconception. Xi An Traffic College Medical University Child and adolescent Hygienics department Professor Pan Jianping believes that drinking suitable amounts of mild to lightly concentrated tea is in fact, good for children.
Professor Pan states that when children drink tea, the first thing they should keep in mind is that they should drink in moderation, the tea quantity should be no more than 1 gram per day, and also that tea should not be drank at night. The second thing is the tea should be lightly concentrated; do not drink heavily concentrated tea. And also do not brew for too long.
The effects of tea drinking on children are many, and most of it safe. It improves appetite, digestion, increases gastrointestinal motility, and also facilitates the secretion of digestive juices. Another effect is its ability to prevent obesity, for when a child maintains his tea drinking habits, it allows him to lose weight and strengthen the body in addition helping him or her prevent or cure a wide variety of cardiovascular diseases. There are other effects too, for instance, mild tea drinking help children fight radiation pollution. The modern child spends excessive amounts of time in front of the TV set and or computer screen, and the polyphenols and lipopolysaccharides in tea help absorb and capture radioactive substances, and helps in excreting them from the body.
At the same time, Professor Pan emphasizes that adolescent girls should refrain from drinking concentrated tea. They are still undergoing physical development, their menstrual periods are just starting to rise, and their bodies have yet to adapt to the changes. Menstrual blood contains iron rich hemoglobin, plasma proteins, and other hemoglobin components. Concentrated tea contains high quantities of tannins, and this kind of compounds combine with the iron in food to form tannates, which in turn interferes with the intestinal mucosa’s ability to absorb iron, thus leading to iron deficiency anemia. Last but not least, concentrated tea contains high levels of caffeine, and caffeine has the property of making the heart beat faster and making urination more frequent, thus increasing the burden of the heart and kidneys.