Expert panel recommends tea second to water as healthy beverage

LIPTON(R) Live Well Challenge helps consumers infuse vitality into a healthy lifestyle by drinking tea and getting active

ENGLEWOOD CLIFFS, N.J., May 1 -- The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition published Healthy Beverage Guidelines proposed by an independent panel of nutrition experts to provide consumers with the guidance they need to choose healthy beverages as part of a balanced diet. 

The Healthy Beverage Guidelines recommend a variety of beverages, and that tea is second only to water as a healthy beverage. The guidelines include up to eight servings of brewed, unsweetened tea and up to four servings of calorie-free sweetened tea per day.

LIPTON®, a leader in promoting health and vitality, wants Americans to "live well" and enjoy being healthy by making positive choices in their lives, which includes drinking tea. LIPTON® is challenging Americans to take the LIPTON® Live Well Challenge by drinking three cups of tea everyday and getting active. The LIPTON® Live Well Challenge encourages a healthy, active lifestyle by experiencing the refreshment, strength and well being provided by tea and exercise.

"Living well means making healthy eating and drinking choices while being active," said Jenna Bell-Wilson, Ph.D., R.D., L.D., and University Professor. "The Healthy Beverage Guidelines help consumers make smart and healthy beverage choices. The good news is making healthy beverage choices doesn't mean giving up taste. In fact, you can have up to eight servings of unsweetened tea and four servings of calorie-free sweetened tea per day. Black or green, iced or hot, tea is a healthy, delicious and refreshing beverage choice."

Why take the Lipton Live Well Challenge

Along with consistent physical activity and eating a diet rich in fruits and vegetables and whole grains, drinking tea is part of a healthy lifestyle. According to a May 2005 research review conducted by a team of researchers at Michigan State University and presented at the American Dietetic Association's (ADA) annual Nutrition News Forecast meeting, tea is a natural source of flavonoid antioxidants and is the main source of flavonoid antioxidants in the U.S. diet. Antioxidants help protect the body from free radical damage.

As part of a healthy diet, regular tea drinking may help maintain a healthy heart. Numerous scientific studies in the U.S. and Europe have been conducted to compare the heart health of regular tea drinkers with those who do not regularly drink tea. Results suggest that people who drink tea may help maintain cardiovascular health as compared to those who don't drink tea, but still have a healthy lifestyle.

Tea can be just as effective as water in helping keep people hydrated. It is a common myth that tea or any other caffeine-containing beverage will cause a loss of body fluid and negatively impact the body's hydration level. Scientific evidence simply does not support this belief. Drinking tea can give your mind a gentle lift that can help you focus. Moreover, unsweetened brewed tea, black or green, is a perfect beverage to use as part of a weight management diet or lifestyle.

Further research has shown that physical activity performed three times a week has beneficial psychological and physical effects. Cardiovascular activity has been proven to improve well-being, general health, mood, sleep, mental performance, physical activity levels and blood flow. In addition, research shows that diet and exercise really go hand-in-hand. Individuals who exercise also eat healthier diets and when exercise is stopped, diets often become sub-par.

How to take the challenge

The challenge is as simple as 1-2-3. Lipton is encouraging consumers to enjoy three teas a day, get active, and feel the difference. With an enlightening cup at breakfast, a healthy sip at lunch and a refreshing snack during the day, three LIPTON® teas can be easily incorporated into the daily diet. It's a great way to give both body and mind a lift.

In addition, a minimum of 30 minutes of cycling or another cardio-related activity at least three times a week can help improve mood and provide an extra boost of energy to stride easily through the workweek and beyond.

TEAm Lipton®, LIPTON's® pro women's cycling and triathlon team, will make appearances at BikeTown USA events across the country to encourage people to take part in the Challenge, launching at Bike New York May 1-7, with a launch in Battery Park on Sunday, May 7 at 7:00 a.m. BikeTown USA is an organization dedicated to changing people's lives by giving away bikes through local grassroots outreach. Through a partnership with BikeTown USA, Lipton tea is making it possible for thousands of Americans to live active lives by giving away bikes.

What the Lipton Live Well Challenge incorporates

The LLWC will be brought to life through an integrated program including a national on-pack promotion and online sweepstakes to win bikes and biking gear and a 10-market national tour with TEAm Lipton®, and BikeTown USA through Baltimore/Washington, Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Houston, Detroit, Los Angeles, Miami, New York and Philadelphia. TEAm Lipton and BikeTown will give away one bike a day and a healthy supply of LIPTON® Tea for 150 days.

About the Healthy Beverage Guidelines

In addition to promoting physical activity, Lipton is the world leader in understanding the science of tea and beverage consumption. As part of that commitment to science, vitality and nutrition, Lipton commissioned a research study on how Americans drink that resulted in proposed guidelines for beverage consumption that fit perfectly with an active lifestyle. 

The Healthy Beverage Guidelines were funded by the Unilever Health Institute, North America* and created by a panel of leading nutrition experts led by Barry Popkin, Director, University of North Carolina, Interdisciplinary Obesity Program. 

Panel members included: Walter C. Willett (Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, MA), Lawrence E. Armstrong (University of Connecticut Human Performance Laboratory, Storrs, CT), George M. Bray (Louisiana State University Medical Center and Pennington Biomedical Research Center, Baton Rouge, LA), Benjamin Caballero (Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD) and Balz Frei (Linus Pauling Institute, Oregon State University, Corvallis, OR).

To help consumers choose beverages in the right balance, variety and moderation, the panel ranked beverages from lowest to highest value based on caloric and nutrient content and related health benefits and risks.

-- Level VI: Calorie rich beverages without nutrients (up to one serving**, less if trying to lose weight) -- Level V: 100% fruit and vegetable juices, whole milk, sports drinks (up to one serving) -- 

Level IV: Diet beverages with sugar substitutes (up to four servings) -- Level III: Nonfat or lowfat milk and fortified unsweetened soy beverages (up to two servings) -- Level II: Unsweetened coffee and tea -- iced and hot (up to eight servings a day of tea, up to four servings of coffee) -- Level I: Water (up to nine servings of water for women, at least thirteen servings for men) **Servings are in 8-ounce portions

The expert panel making these recommendations was fully independent. The Unilever Health Institute, North America,* Lipton and Unilever had no power to influence or veto decisions. For more information about the Healthy Beverage Guidelines, visit .

To learn more about the LIPTON® Live Well Challenge, and the power of tea, visit

*Now known as the Unilever Food and Health Research Institute

About Lipton® Teas

LIPTON® Tea, the world's leading tea brand, is available in more than 180 countries worldwide. With more than 100 years of tasting, buying, and blending expertise, Lipton Tea provides today's health-conscious consumer with a variety of convenient, great-tasting, healthy tea products across several beverage formats.

Lipton Tea employs expert tea-tasters, mastered in the harvesting, production, purchase, transport and blending of the more than 3,000 types of tea, sourcing its teas from as many as 25-35 countries to ensure tea leaf integrity, quality and freshness. Lipton Tea is one of the only brands to operate its own tea estates and research facilities, which are located around the globe.

In 2006, the brand will introduce several new innovative products including: Lipton Premium Pyramid Teas in revolutionary pyramid-shaped tea bags; Lipton Premium Tea Pods formulated for the Home Cafe Brewing System; and Lipton To Go Iced Tea Mix-Pitcher Size. Lipton Tea also is extending two of its popular product lines, including: two new flavors of Lipton Flavored Green Leaf Tea and three new flavors of Lipton To Go Iced Tea Mix-Individual Size.

In the Ready-To-Drink format, the brand will introduce two new flavors of Lipton Original Iced Tea, the only leading national bottled iced-tea brand made with fresh brewed tea, not from powders or concentrate, and three new flavors of Lipton Iced Tea. 

All Lipton Teas are made from real tea leaves, and most feature the brand's proprietary AOX(TM) Seal, indicating the product contains a substantial level of flavonoid antioxidants. Dietary antioxidants are thought to help protect the body from the damaging effects of free radicals.

Lipton Tea is owned by Unilever (NYSE: UL - News, UN - News), one of the world's largest consumer products companies featuring a portfolio of brands that makes people feel good, look good and get more out of life every day. For more information about Lipton Tea, visit .

About Unilever

Unilever (NYSE: UL - News, UN - News), one of the world's largest consumer products companies, aims to add vitality to life by meeting everyday needs for nutrition, hygiene and personal care. Each day, around the world, consumers make 150 million decisions to purchase Unilever products. The company has a portfolio of brands that make people feel good, look good and get more out of life.

In the United States these brands include recognized names such as: Axe, "all," Ben & Jerry's, Bertolli, Breyers, Caress, Country Crock, Degree, Dove personal care products, Hellmann's, Lipton, Knorr, Popsicle, Promise, Q-Tips, Skippy, Slim-Fast, Snuggle, Suave and Vaseline.

All of the preceding brand names are registered trademarks of the Unilever Group of Companies. Dedicated to serving consumers and the communities where we live, work and play, Unilever in the United States employs more than 15,000 people in 74 office and manufacturing sites in 24 states and Puerto Rico - generating more than $13 billion in sales in 2005. For more information visit .

Unilever United States, Inc.

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