The secret of green tea lies in the fact it is rich in catechin polyphenols, particularly epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG).
EGCG is a powerful anti-oxidant, inhibits the growth of and even kills cancer cells without harming healthy tissue, is effective in lowering LDL cholesterol levels, and inhibits the formation of blood clots.
Tea began as a Chinese medicinal drink and now as with so many foods and medicines, the Chinese medicinal thoughts are being proven scientifically in modern times.
Today, there is ample evidence that it is good for you as a daily tonic in the interest of preventing or treating a wide range of maladies; including cancer, hypertension (high blood pressure), high cholesterol, premature aging, food poisoning, dental decay and bad breath, and even arthritis.
Green, oolong, and black teas all come from the leaves of the Camellia sinensis plant. What sets green tea apart is the way it is processed.
The leaves are steamed which prevents the EGCG compound from being oxidized. By contrast, black and oolong tea leaves are made from fermented leaves resulting in the EGCG being converted into other compounds rendering it ineffective.
To date, the only negative side effect reported is insomnia due to the fact that it contains caffeine. Thirty to sixty mg. of caffeine in six-eight ounces of tea compared to over one-hundred mg. in eight ounces of coffee.
The flavor of the tea can be described as; fresh, green or grassy, with some varieties having a bit of sweetness to them and some a little stringent.
Studies have shown green tea is good for you.
Brewing Green tea
Producing the perfect cup of tea is a tricky process. If not handled properly, those same polyphenols that provide health benefits can ruin the flavor, making the tea taste "grassy".
It's particularly important not to over brew. While it's best to follow the manufacturer's instructions for each variety of tea, here are some general guidelines:
The Chinese have known about the medicinal benefits of green tea since ancient times, using it to treat everything from headaches to depression.
Today, scientific research in both Asia and the west is providing hard evidence for the health benefits long associated with tea.
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