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  6 Tea Types for Good Health

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Country : Algeria
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Date Registered : 2014-12-18
Age : 27

PostSubject: 6 Tea Types for Good Health   2017-01-27, 11:35 pm

Did you know that tea is the most consumed beverage in the world after water? Yet the huge variety of teas available at your local supermarket can be very confusing for the average person: black tea, green tea, oolong tea, rooibos tea, jasmine tea and much more. When you want to know what to buy, you need first of all to understand the main tea varieties, the differences between them, and their main health benefits.

A short history

Tea plants (Camellia sinensis) are native to East and South Asia. Tea has been used for thousands of years in China for medicinal purposes, and later on people have started to use it as a beverage. Drinking tea arrived for Great Britain around 1660, but was not widely consumed there until the 18th century due to its expensive price. Tea became more widespread beverage to other parts of the British society by the late 19th century, but it was still mainly used for special occasions. During the 19 century tea was first introduced into India by the British, who wanted to break the Chinese monopoly on tea. The British started to develop tea industry in India, resulting in export to Europe in large amounts which brought the tea price down.

Different tea types

This article will explain the differences between the main tea types black, oolong, green and white tea. These 4 types of tea all come from the Camellia sinensis plant. The difference between them comes from the difference in the way they have been processed.

Black Tea

This is the most processed tea. When the tea leaves are picked, they are left in the sun to slightly wilt. Then the leaves are rolled to break their tissue. Then starts the process of fermentation where the leaves darken from green to red and finely become black. In the fermentation process the leaf cells are exposed to oxygen, and a chemical reaction (oxidation) takes place that causes the leaf to darken.

Health benefits – according to webMD website, studies have shown that black tea may protect lungs from damage caused by exposure to cigarette smoke. It also may reduce the risk of stroke. This tea has also been linked to lower levels of cholesterol in people with mildly high levels. Other attributions include helping lower blood pressure, regulating blood sugar, and stimulating the circulatory system.

Oolong Tea

This tea goes through the wilting process like black tea, but this stage is shorter, so he color of the leaves is dark green or red to almost black. The longer the fermentation, the closer to black tea they will become.

Health benefits – webMD website says that in an animal study, those given antioxidants from oolong tea were found to have lower bad cholesterol levels. There are also claims that oolong tea can help in weight loss, but it hasn’t been scientifically proven.

Green Tea

Whereas black tea goes through full fermentation, and oolong tea is partly fermented, green tea doesn’t go through fermentation process. Instead, after the leaves are picked, they are steamed or pan fired. Then the leaves are dried and packaged. As a result of the different processing, green tea has less caffeine than black tea, and it also has HGCG which is a powerful antioxidant that can be only found in green tea.

Health benefits – webMD website says that green tea’s antioxidants may interfere with the growth of various types of cancer. It also helps prevent clogging of the arteries, boosts metabolism, regulates blood sugar levels, reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease, reduce risk of neurological disorders like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases, reduce risk of stroke, and improve cholesterol levels. 

White Tea

This tea is also not fermented and is the least processed tea, and therefore contains the most antioxidants. The tea leaves are picked from newer buds, early in the year. Only the top leaf and bud are picked. Then they are dried in the sun (or mechanically baked) and are not steamed or pan fired like green tea. The result is a very pale yellow tea with slightly sweet taste. This tea has a very low level of caffeine.

Health benefits – webMD website mentions that one study showed that white tea has the most potent anticancer properties compared to more processed teas. Other health benefits include lowering blood pressure and cholesterol, reducing blood sugar levels, reducing the risks for heart diseases and strengthening the immune system due to its anti bacterial and anti viral properties.

Blended Teas

These are created When one of the four major types of tea (black, oolong, green or white tea) is the base, and added to it are other herbs. For example: a blend of black tea and bergamot is called Earl Gray, and black tea blended with a mixture of aromatic Indian spices and herbs is called masala chai.

Herbal Tea

Herbal teas are not “true” teas, as they come from different plant sources and not from the tea plant Camellia sinensis. They are made from herbs, fruits, flowers, seeds or roots steeped in hot water. Varieties include rooibos, peppermint, chamomile, jasmine, ginger, mint and many more. Rooibos for example, sometimes called red tea, is made from another plant entirely, Aspalathus linearis, and is a traditional South African infusion.

Health benefits – Limited research has been done on the health benefits of herbal teas in comparison to the traditional teas. Some findings include a small study published in the Journal of Nutrition that found that drinking three cups of hibiscus tea daily could help lower blood pressure in people with modestly elevated levels. Other references mention chamomile tea whose antioxidants may help prevent complications from diabetes and inhibit the growth of cancer cells. You can also find in my website a variety of herbal infusions to treat various conditions.

Although a lot of questions remain about how long a certain tea needs to be steeped for the most benefit, and how much you need to drink it, nutritionists agree drinking tea is good for you. So if you want to incorporate healthy beverages in your diet on a more regular basis to benefit from these health-promoting properties, it’s not just about the foods. it’s also about what you drink as well, that can contribute to your health.

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