A Healthier Choice

Did You Know? Over 90% of tea companies use bleached tea bags

There are people who will prepare themselves a hot cup of savory tea and will be more than ready to enjoy the taste as well as the numerous health advantages their brew may have to offer. While steeping a tea bag filled with herbs and leaves, there are very few who realize that there may be a potential danger lurking in what is meant to be a relaxing, soothing drink. For those that aren’t aware, many tea bags, if bleached, contain chemicals that can wreck havoc on your body and life.

Process of Making Tea Bags

The making of teabags goes back all the way to the 1900s. In the beginning they were made from silk and hand sewn into pouches. Initially, these pouches were meant to be opened, though many preferred to put the entire pouch into the water since it was more convenient.

Following this, other types of teabags were made as many producers experimented with different sizes and shapes that could best work with consumers. Today, teabags are made from a paper that is composed of wood and vegetable fibers. Oftentimes, this paper is bleached for appearance and then the tea leaves and herbs are sealed inside using a thermoplastic material. However, using these methods of making teabags can release harmful chemicals into the tea which is why some manufacturers are looking into alternative methods.

Effects of Dioxin & Epichlorohydrin

The dangers to be found in bleached teabags can be mainly found in two chemicals that are known as dioxin and epichlorohydrin. Dioxin is a chemical that is found in chlorine, which is what is used to bleach some tea bags. Once the teabag is steeped in water, the residue of dioxin releases into the water then gets into the body’s system after the tea is drank. When dioxin enters the body it is absorbed into the fat cells where it stays for a period of 7 to 10 years. While it sits in the body it damages the body’s hormone system which ends up causing behavior and developmental disorders as well as puts the affected person at a high risk for cancer. For women that are pregnant, it can also affect the fetus in similar ways.

The second dangerous chemical that can be found in some teabags is epichlorohydrin. Epichlorohydrin is used in tea bags in order to strengthen the paper so that it does not dissolve in water. This chemical is commonly found in the making of plastics and can have potentially harmful effects after long term exposure such as respiratory illnesses. Furthermore, exposing epichlorohydrin to water makes it a carcinogen, putting the drinker even more at risk for cancer.

Buying Bleach Free Tea Bags

With consumers growing more aware about the dangers that can be drawn from some manufactured tea bags, some producers have found safe alternatives that do not contain the harmful chemicals that are found in bleached tea bags. You can often see labels that boast bleach and chemical free on the packaging of some tea boxes or on websites that sell tea. When looking to purchase tea it is important to be sure their tea bags are chemical free so that you are not putting yourself as well as your loved ones at risk for any chemicals that would disrupt their health.