Green tea is made solely from the leaves of
Camellia sinensis that have undergone minimal oxidation during
processing. Green tea in India had originated from China. It has recently
become more widespread in the West, where black tea is
traditionally consumed. Many varieties of green tea
have been created in countries where they are grown. These
varieties can differ substantially due to variable growing
conditions, horticulture, production processing, and harvesting
Over the last few decades green tea has been subjected to many scientific and medical studies to determine the extent of its long-purported health benefits, with some evidence suggesting that regular green tea drinkers may have a lower risk of developing heart disease and certain types of cancer. Green tea does raise the metabolic rate to produce weight loss, a green tea extract containing polyphenols and caffeine has been shown to induce thermogenesis and stimulate fat oxidation, boosting the metabolic rate, without increasing the heart rate.
According to a survey released by the United States Department of Agriculture, the main content of flavonoids in a cup of green tea is higher than that in the same volume of other food and drink items that are traditionally considered of health contributing nature, including fresh fruits, vegetable juices or wine. Flavonoids are a group of phytochemicals in most plant products that are responsible for such health effects as anti-oxidative and anticarcinogenic functions. However, based on the same USDA survey, the content of flavanoids may vary dramatically amongst different tea products.
Steeping is the process of making a cup of tea;
it is also referred to as brewing. In general, two grams of tea
per 100ml of water, or about one teaspoon of green tea per five
ounce cup, should be used. With very high-quality teas like
gyokuro, more than this amount of leaf is used, and the leaf is
steeped multiple times for short durations.
Best Green tea steeping time and temperature varies with different tea. The hottest steeping temperatures are 81°C to 87°C (180°F to 190°F) water and the longest steeping times two to three minutes. The coolest brewing temperatures are 61°C to 69°C (140°F to 160°F) and the shortest times about 30 seconds. In general, lower-quality green teas are steeped hotter and longer, while higher-quality teas are steeped cooler and shorter. Steeping green tea too hot or too long will result in a bitter, astringent brew, regardless of the initial quality. It is thought that excessively hot water results in tannin chemical release, which is especially problematic in green teas, as they have higher contents of these. High-quality green teas can be and usually are steeped multiple times; two or three steepings is typical. The steeping technique also plays a very important role in avoiding the tea developing an overcooked taste. It is common practice for tea leaf to be left in the cup or pot and for hot water to be added as the tea is drunk until the flavor degrades.
Green tea has been credited with providing a wide variety of health benefits, many of which have not been validated by scientific evidence. These claims and any for which academic citations are currently missing:
Most of us enjoy a cup of green tea, but could the nation’s favourite drink help us in WEIGHT LOSS
While everyone from Kate Moss and Kylie Minogue to Madonna
and Robbie Williams have been spotted drinking a good old
cup of green tea, some celebs have gone as
far as ditching their regular teabag for one that supposedly
aids weight loss.
For years, supermodel Sophie Dahl championed the way for slimming brews after she claimed that drinking green tea boosted her metabolism, helping her to drop from a size 16 to a size 12. More recently Victoria Beckman has taken centre stage, following rumours that she drinks pu-erh tea, an ancient Chinese brew that reportedly helps you stay slim and keeps you looking younger!
But whilst green tea and pu-erh tea have made headlines thanks to their celebrity followers, they aren’t the only brews that have been linked with shifting those extra pounds. Amongst one of the most popular is Wulong or oolong – a tea that falls somewhere between black and green tea and reportedly boosts metabolism - Weight Loss.
A large amount of robust research has focussed on the
overall health benefits of flavonoids in green tea. As a
result, many health experts now suggest that as part of a
healthy lifestyle, four cups a day could help to protect our
bodies from the effects of free radicals – potentially
harmful molecules that can damage cells. In turn, this may
help to lower our risk of many health problems including
heart disease, cancer, strokes, Alzheimer’s disease and even
Green Tea is a natural source of fluoride, a mineral that’s important for healthy teeth. And even though both green and black teas contain caffeine, health experts say there’s an insufficient amount in a cup of tea to cause a diuretic effect. As a result, both the Food Standards Agency and the British Dietetic Association say that tea counts towards our daily fluid requirement.
So even if a cuppa won’t make you slim overnight, chances are it’s not going to do you any harm. Our advice: put the kettle on, skip the sugar and biscuits and enjoy your favourite brew!
Green tea is a rich source of polyphenol catechins. Epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) is the most active form of the catechins responsible for green tea’s antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and metabolic effects. Green tea also contains caffeine, which appears to act synergistically with EGCG to assist metabolism. A recent meta-analysis of all human green tea weight loss studies1 found that green tea containing caffeine works best, and produces a statistically significant reduction in body weight, body mass index, and waistline.
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