Tea is an integral part of Asian culture. After its discovery in China 5000 years ago, tea was used for medicinal purposes and only available to the royal families. As time passed, tea became available and popular among the general public. Nowadays tea is enjoyed worldwide.
Tea is made from leaves of tea trees (camellia sinensis). In general, the varieties in tea are results of different degrees of fermentation. Just like what magic roasting does to coffee beans, fermentation plays a crucial role in tea-making process and determines the final taste. For example, tea leaves are often fully fermented to make black tea, while oolong tea only requires semi-fermentation. Yet in making green tea, fermentation is skipped for such benefits as a fresher taste, lighter tea color, and most important of all, more antioxidants preserved. With so many varieties available, everyone can find their cup of tea.
There is a good reason why green tea has brewed such a buzz. Scientific study has shown that drinking green tea has several health benefits. It contains abundant natural antioxidant, catechins (including potent EGCG), which obstruct free radicals and demonstrate the inhibitory effects on tumors.
Green tea also has the power to lower cholesterol and triglyceride levels while raising HDL (“good”) cholesterol. Clinical research suggests many other benefits including the ability to reduce inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), control diabetes and liver disease, and weight control. In addition, it shows promises to put pre-cancerous prostate cells in their place. Its fluoride may help prevent cavity.
More and more medical studies are under way to further assess green tea’s medical efficacy. Soon we will have a better modern understanding of this old-fashioned beverage.
Extras from Cold Brewing
- Fewer side effects: Less caffeine released in cold water so it’s good for people sensitive to caffeine and less theobromine so it suits people with sensitive stomach.
- Flavor: Subtler and smoother.
- Energy saving: No boiling water needed meaning energy is saved. What a green way to enjoy green tea.