The Importance of Tea - Manners and Etiquette Appear All But Forgotten in Today's Society

John M. Dabbs

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The history and rituals of tea-drinking remind us — tea is much more than a drink to quench our thirst or keep us warm… or cool. If it weren’t for the differences in our cultures, we might not notice the importance it has played in our lives.

I list the top 10 health benefits of tea below

Grace & Manners

There was a time when most children experienced or witnessed tea parties. This could be an informal affair where the lady of the house would serve hot tea and snacks for lady friends. The events could also be a more formal occasion where both ladies and gentlemen gathered for social purposes.

Ceremonies originated in China, where tea originated. It flowed to Japan, India, and the western world. In the United States, our colonial heritage lends our embodiment of “tea parties” to those of the upper-class in England. We hold the aura of sophistication and acting properly in high esteem.

Little girls have tea parties and practice their manners from a young age… or at least they used to do this. I’m not sure anymore.

In my younger days, they taught little girls how to act politely and properly, and they practiced even during playtime. They taught boys how to act politely and properly during mealtime, and reminded them of their manners before company arrived.

This wasn’t the case if you were visiting a close family member. This allowed us to act as our usual goofy self. I didn’t realize my manners were shoddy until graduated and worked in a profession. I work consciously to improve my manners and set a better example for my own children.

Tea, as a ritual, has been used to teach etiquette and reinforce manners in our society. During the years we have seen small tea-shops come and go. In these quaint establishments, you can enjoy a proper cup of tea, along with a few sweets. Better the experience when you have the company of your friends.

The Social Convention

I often see tea and its importance. The most recent that I’m aware of:

It’s a non-optional social convention. “Visitors should always be offered a beverage. If a friend or visitor who comes to you is upset, they should always be offered a hot beverage.” - Dr. Sheldon Cooper, TV's Big Bang Theory character

Health Benefits

We consider tea a stylish, healthy alternative to coffee and soda. It’s both fat and calorie-free in its pure form. Makers of cosmetics and skincare products are developing products integrating the benefits and pleasures of tea.

  • Tea has less caffeine than coffee.
  • Tea may reduce your risk of heart attack and stroke.
  • Tea may help with weight loss.
  • Tea may help protect your bones.
  • Tea may keep your smile bright.
  • Tea may boost your immune system.
  • Tea may help battle cancer.
  • Herbal Tea may help soothe the digestive system.
  • Unadulterated Tea is calorie-free!

It's hard to dismiss so many benefits compared to the intuitive counter-productive effects of soft drinks.

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Happy Festivus! and Happy Holidays!

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An outdoor enthusiast with a passion for travel and adventure. John is a professional consultant and photojournalist.

Johnson City, TN
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