Are you drinking your morning tea with a dash of adulteration?
- Drinking tea lowers risk of heart diseases and stroke
- The FSSAI has banned the use of toxic adulteration agents in teas
- Consuming adulterated tea puts you at a high risk of liver disorders
Your morning cup of tea has high amounts of flavonoids and antioxidants that provide ample benefits like lower risk of heart diseases and stroke, weight loss, lowering cholesterol, and even protection against cancer. But with cheap and adulterated teas in the market, it is important to make sure you’re consuming only the antioxidants, not the harmful adulteration.
The most common types of adulterants present in tea are colouring substances and exhausted tea leaves. Consuming coloured leaves that have already been used puts you at high risk of health issues like liver disorder.
The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) prohibits the use of colouring and dyes in tea for health reasons. Colour is often added to improve the appearance. Tea adulterants like bismark brown, potassium blue, turmeric and indigo are common colouring agents. Plumbago, or black lead, used commonly in lead pencils, is also often used as a colouring agent in black tea. Many teas contain iron filings from tea machinery. High amounts of iron can cause stomach pain, liver problems, and even cancer. The Tea Board of India has banned the use of these toxic agents.
So here’s how to check to see if your morning cup of tea is adulterated. A recent video posted by The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) on social media explained how to check for adulteration of tea with exhausted tea leaves:
Start by taking a filter paper. Then, spread the tea leaves on it and sprinkle some water. Wash the wet filter paper under regular tap water. Finally, put the paper against the light and carefully observe the stains. If the tea is not adulterated, no stains will be left behind. On the other hand, adulterated tea leaves will leave a black or brown stain on the filter paper.