Naked Science Forum

General Science => General Science => Topic started by: katieHaylor on 16/08/2017 12:28:01

Title: Does microwaving a tea bag (in water) kill off anything beneficial?
Post by: katieHaylor on 16/08/2017 12:28:01
Mking says:

I drink lots of tea. Sometimes I microwave a mug of water and then dunk/stew the tea-bag (because it warms the cup in the process) and sometimes I put the tea-bag in cold water and microwave the water to hot...
My question is: am I killing anything that is otherwise beneficial by microwaving the tea-bag?

The tea is brewed more quickly when I put the tea bag and water in the microwave together than when I add the tea bag to the water after the water's been heated by the microwave.


What do you think?
Title: Re: Does microwaving a tea bag (in water) kill off anything beneficial?
Post by: chiralSPO on 16/08/2017 14:14:50
If there's a metal staple in the teabag you risk killing (damaging) the microwave itself. Otherwise, I doubt there is too much difference between heating the water first or heating it with the bag. For very high quality teas that have complex flavors, some of the subtle tones might be lost due to evaporation or decomposition of trace compounds, but the difference between a cup cooling down from 100 C and one cooling down from 75 C is not very big. (of course, you could microwave the heck out of it, and boil the water for 10 minutes with the tea in there, but I assume this is just a quick zap to heat the water and then let it steep...)
Title: Re: Does microwaving a tea bag (in water) kill off anything beneficial?
Post by: alancalverd on 16/08/2017 17:56:44
The only beneficial content of tea is boiled water. No problem!