Dr Malcolm Cross, a psychologist at City University London, tested the anxiety levels of a group of people following a stressful situation and revealed that even a single cuppa has a significant calming effect.
His team gave 42 volunteers a mental arithmetic exam and afterwards offered half of them a cup of tea and the other half a glass of water.
The water group's anxiety levels soared by 25% compared to before the task, while the tea group actually reported a 4% reduction in anxiety - despite the taxing test, they were more relaxed than when they started.
68% of Britons medicate with tea
According to a survey carried out for the research, 68% of Britons turn to tea in a dilemma, making it Britain's most common response to trouble of whatever kind.
About 60% said the promise of comfort and warmth was the main reason for putting the kettle on, but 48% said they found calm through the drink's association with Britain and cultural icons such as the Queen.
"The ritual of making and drinking tea - particularly during times of stress - is at the very core of British culture," Cross said.
"This study shows that the social psychological aspects of tea enhance the effects of its chemical make-up on our bodies and brains.
"It's possible that this culturally rooted, symbiotic function between mind and body explains why Britons instinctively turn to tea in times of need."
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