DAVIDsTEA 2017 Advent Calendar

It’s that time of the year again, and I’m so excited! This year is special, because I got an early Christmas present/ part-of-my-birthday present from my lovely boyfriend. Here is the DAVIDsTEA 2017 Advent calendar!

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The advent calendar comes in this colourful box with this winter scenery and a see through area where you can catch a glimpse of the numbered boxes inside. The packaging box feels pretty strong and hardy.

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Opening up the flaps, you’ll get a better look at the actual calendar. They are actually coloured boxes that functions as little drawers for you to pull out and access your teas. The drawers are numbered for the days of the month (24 days until Christmas) and are scrambled in no particular order, which I thought adds an interesting twist to the calendar.

Once you pull out the drawers, you will see that the name of the tea and its brewing instructions listed on the bottom. The tea itself comes in a small sample sized metal tin with a window for you to see the tea leaves. I think one tin is good for approximately 2 servings of tea for me. On the back of the tin is the DAVIDsTEA logo and the name of the tea gain in English and French.

In the centre of the calendar, you will see a red box with a star on it that says ‘Joy Inside’. Wonder what it is?

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There is actually a star ornament inside the box, which you can put on your Christmas tree. It also comes with a coupon to buy more tea from DAVIDsTEA.

SPOILERS AHEAD!
Continue reading “DAVIDsTEA 2017 Advent Calendar”

Guide to Drinking Green Tea

 

Because good health is the greatest blessing of life.

This post will be part of a multi-part post on what green tea is, why you should drink green tea, and how you should enjoy a perfect cup of this popular tea.

Green tea is made from Camellia sinensis leaves, originating from China. Traditionally, it has been used to treat everything from headaches to depression. Hailed as a superfood for being rich in antioxidants and nutrients, green tea has become a very popular drink today.

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The major nutrients in green tea are:

  1. Catechins
  2. Caffeine
  3. Theanine
  4. Vitamins (C, B2, Folic acid, β-carotene, E)
  5. Saponins
  6. Fluorine
  7. GABA
  8. Minerals (Potassium, Calcium, Phosphorus, Manganese, etc.)
  9. Chlorophyll

How do these nutrients affect you? Here are a few benefits of green tea:

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1. Green Tea can make you smarter

According to research, the consumption of green tea has been shown to have a positive effect on the brain’s cognitive function, particularly working memory.1 When used in higher-than-usual doses in another study, green tea was also shown to be able to reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s disease.2

2. Green Tea can clear your skin and give you a brighter smile

Researchers found that green tea can be used to treat dry, red, flaky skin caused by inflammatory skin diseases by slowing the growth of skin cells and affecting a gene that regulates the cells’ life cycles.3

Studies have also found that catechins can inhibit the growth of the harmful bacteria Streptococcus mutans (cavities), and drinking more green tea can help improve dental health.4,5,6

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3. Green tea can help you lose weight

Green tea has also been shown to help decrease body fat percentage, body weight, waist circumference and even belly fat, according to a 12-week randomized controlled trial.7,8,9

4. Green Tea can lower your cholesterol

Another analytical study showed that the consumption of green tea in either beverage or extract form reduced total cholesterol (TC) and “bad” cholesterol (LDL-cholesterol) concentrations, but showed no difference on the “good” cholesterol (HDL-cholesterol).10

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5. Green Tea can reduce your risk of stroke and heart disease

Green tea is also shown to have a positive impact on cardiovascular health. A study following 40,000 participants (aged 40 to 79) for 11 years showed that the participants who drank at least 5 cups of green tea per day had a lower risk of dying from cardiovascular disease than those who drank less.11

According to the journal Stroke: Journal of the American Heart Association, consumption of green tea and coffee is associated with a lower risk of CVD and stroke. 12

6. Green Tea can help you live longer and healthier

Research shows that polyphenols, which are compounds in teas that affect it’s flavour and texture, take up approximately 30% of green tea by weight,.13 Included within this category is a particular catechin called Epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) is found in large amounts within green tea, which have the potential to prevent cell damage.14

In another study following 40,530 participants over the course of 11 years, those who drank 5 or more cups of green tea resulted in a 23% lower risk of death in women and 12% lower risk of death in men.15

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Given all these benefits and hype, it is difficult not to hail green tea as a ‘superfood’. However, it is also important to note that some studies are inconclusive and may not show a statistically significant benefit. As such, some information needs to be taken with a grain of salt.

Considering all these benefits of green tea, will you be making green tea a regular part of your life?

Singapore Trip Day 5: Sultan Mosque and Haji Lane, Changi Airport

Because for the urban traveler with business and global acumen, Singapore is the place to be.

I can’t believe it’s already the last day of my stay in Singapore! Thankfully, we leave in the evening, so I still had time to explore during the day.

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My first stop is Kampong Glam, which is home to a rich Malay history and culture, and a Muslim community. The region is filled with interesting Arabian restaurants and shops. At the heart of this neighbourhood is the Sultan Mosque. The building is built in an Islamic-Saracenic style by connecting traditional Indian and Islamic ideas.

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The Sultan Mosque also allows visitors during certain times of the day, even providing robes (for people who are under-dressed for the mosque) to enter. The mosque is open from 9:30am to 12pm and 2pm to 4pm on Saturdays to Thursdays, and 2:30pm to 4pm on Fridays.
Address: 3 Muscat Street Masjid SultanSingapore 198833

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Then we headed over to Haji Lane, a street filled with boutique shops and cafes that give off a hipster vibe. The street art also makes for a great photo op.

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And then it was time to go. I included Singapore Changi Airport because it was named the world’s best airport, and for good reason. I would definitely recommend to set aside plenty of time to go through the check in (which actually slower than I expected) and visit the attractions inside the airport.

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The attractions include the Kinetic Raindrops installation and Cactus Garden in Terminal 1, the Orchid Garden, Sunflower Garden, and Enchanted Garden in Terminal 2, and the Butterfly Garden in Terminal 3. The terminals are connect by Skytrains, so you can definitely travel within the airport. Check out more attractions on their website! Just be mindful of your boarding gate and time.

And this concludes my trip to Singapore! I had a great time in Singapore overall, and I hope your trip will be too. Remember to follow me to be updated on my new adventures in the future 🙂

And in case you missed it, check out my full Singapore itinerary:
Singapore Day 1
Singapore Day 2
Singapore Day 3
Singapore Day 4

Singapore Trip Day 4: Haw Par Villa, Vivocity, Singapore River

Because for the urban traveler with business and global acumen, Singapore is the place to be.

On to day four of the trip!

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Today’s first stop is Haw Par Villa, which is a theme park famous for its depictions of Chinese legends and folklore. Previously known as the Tiger Balm Gardens, the park was created by the same founders of the Tiger Balm ointment – the Aw brothers.

 

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Honestly, the park was a bit strange, and the scruffiness of the exhibit only adds to its eerie atmosphere (it was pretty empty when we got there too), but it is definitely unique. The most famous part of the park must be the ‘Ten Courts of Hell“, where you will see graphic (often gruesome) depictions of the myth – parents bringing children to the park must beware.
Address: 262 Pasir Panjang Road Haw Par Villa

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Next, we made a stop at Vivocity, which is the largest shopping mall in Singapore. It is connected to the Harbourfront Centre, which is a shopping mall and a ferry terminal that connects to nearby Indonesian ports.

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Due to its location, you can even see Sentosa Island (you can also get to the island via the ‘Sentosa Island Monorail Express’). The mall itself is big and houses a lot of shops and restaurants – possibly my favourite shopping centre in Singapore!
Address: 1 Harbourfront Walk Vivo CitySingapore 098585

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Then, we headed over to the Asian Civilizations Museum, located by the Singapore River. The museum explores the history of Asia and look at artefacts of Southeast Asian, South Asian, Chinese and West Asian cultures. I found the exhibits very interesting and with a good blend of interactive displays. I spent almost 3 hours at this location – this is possibly my favourite museum of the trip! If you were only able to visit one museum on your trip, I would recommend this one.

The museum is open daily from 10am to 7pm, with closing extended to 9pm on Fridays.
Address: 1 Empress Place Empress Place BuildingSingapore 179555

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Just outside the museum is the Cavenagh Bridge, which is the only suspension bridge and the oldest bridge to exist in its original form.

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The Singapore River makes for a good stroll and a very pretty picture.

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Then, we headed towards the Esplanade Concert Hall, where we got to watch a free choir performance. Remember to check the website for any upcoming events before you get here! Also worth visiting for the architecture.
Address: 1 Esplanade Dr, Singapore 038981

And this concludes my fourth day in Singapore! Follow me to be updated on my new adventures!

And in case you missed it, check out my full Singapore itinerary:
Singapore Day 1
Singapore Day 2
Singapore Day 3
Singapore Day 5

Singapore Trip Day 3: Little India and Chinatown

Because for the urban traveler with business and global acumen, Singapore is the place to be.

Moving on, day three of the trip.

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My first stop was the Sri Mariamman Temple. It is Singapore’s oldest Hindu temple built in a South Indian architectural style with a gopuram (tower). Located within Singapore’s Little India, this temple is beautiful and free to visit, just remember to take off your shoes before you enter.
Address: 244 South Bridge Road Sri Mariamman TempleSingapore 058793

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Then, I would recommend visiting the House of Tan Teng Niah, also located inside Little India. This region is definitely one of the most colourful regions in Singapore!
Address: 37 Kerbau Rd, Singapore 219168

Unfortunately, we had missed this because I was travelling with my elderly grandma, who preferred having lunch in Chinatown. I went back to Little India later that night though to get curry for dinner.

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As we strolled through Chinatown, we arrived at the Thian Hock Keng Temple, which is a Hokkien temple that worships the Chinese sea goddess Mazu. This is a UNESCO site, so it is definitely worth a visit!
Address: 158 Telok Ayer Street | ChinatownSingapore 068613

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Minutes away, we arrived at the Buddha Tooth Relic Temple. This Buddhist temple that worships the Maitreya Buddha, a.k.a. ‘The Compassionate One’ or ‘The Future Buddha’. This temple is also very beautiful and worth a visit.
Address: 288 South Bridge RoadSingapore 058840

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Next stop, the Red Dot Design Museum, a very futuristic art museum. Definitely worth the visit if you like art, I spent an hour here. The museum is open from 10am to 8pm on Mondays to Thursdays, and 10am to 11pm on Fridays to Sundays.
Address: 11 Marina Boulevard, Red Dot Design MuseumSingapore 018940

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Next stop was the Suntec City Mall, where we did some shopping. Unlike the shops on Orchard Road, this mall houses more affordable and cheap brands, which I really liked. It is also where the Fountain of Wealth is, come give it a try for a touch of luck!
Address:  3 Temasek Blvd, Singapore 038983

And this concludes my third day in Singapore! Follow me to be updated on my new adventures!

And in case you missed it, check out my full Singapore itinerary:
Singapore Day 1
Singapore Day 2
Singapore Day 4
Singapore Day 5