Here’s a bit of good news for the unsophisticated among us. Citing health benefits, an Australian scientist is endorsing the practice of microwaving one’s tea. Dr. Quan Voung, a scientist at the University of Newcastle who specializes in exploring ways to “add value” to natural products, found that microwaving tea activated 80 percent of the caffeine, theanine, and polyphenol compounds within the drink — an increase compared to heating it up on the stove. Theanine is an amino acid that promotes stress relief, and polyphenols are antioxidants that have been linked to reducing inflammation, fighting signs of aging, and supporting healthy blood-sugar and blood-pressure levels.
To extract the elevated health benefits, Vuong combined hot water with a tea bag in a cup, microwaved the cup on half power for 30 seconds, and then let the cup sit for a minute. This method, Voung claims, delivers the health equivalent of drinking more than three cups of tea.
It should also be known that Vuong is a serial microwaver. Last year he found that microwaving lemon particles released additional antioxidants, and he also discovered that microwaving macadamia skin enhanced the availability of the nut’s phenolic compounds.
Vuong asserts that his method will also make your cup more delicious, which honestly is kind of pushing it.