My Tea lovers!

How does it feel when the aroma of freshly brewed tea enters your nose? It is a long lasting scent that helps keep you smiling and fresh throughout the day. Well, the first thought which comes into our mind as we hear tea is a box of ‘Lipton’ or ‘Red Label’ tea. At least that’s what I have seen growing up at my house! But are those tea bags of ‘Lipton’ really beneficial? What if a small change can turn this beverage into a ‘medicinal drink’? Here you go my love. 🙂
Ditch your normal tea with Green Tea!

 What turns it into the safest and healthiest drink?

Green Tea is made from Young shoots of Camellia Sinensis bush, a plant from India. Of all the teas, Green Tea undergoes the least transformation. It’s processing is still done manually for most part. This helps to keep the medicinal value of Green Tea intact. 

 In his book ‘The 17-Day Green Tea Diet’, authors Simon & Schuster suggest that if you drink four cups of Green Tea everyday accompanied with few more diet changes, you can loose large amount of fat. So, technically Green Tea also helps you to loose that extra amount of unwanted stuff from your body!

  • Green Tea deactivates your Fat storage genes:- It turns off the genes which are responsible for weight gain, and makes weight loss effortless. Two of the primary nutritional tools to turn off fat genes are EGCG (Epigallocatechin Gallate) and Folate that are found at high levels in green tea. 
  • Green Tea protects your body from toxins :- One study found that Macha, a Japanese Green Tea protects body against liver and kidney damage. Another study published in the journal Biological Chemistry showed that green tea protected the liver from stress caused by alcohol (If you are fond of alcohol, don’t forget to drink your green tea the next morning!)
  • Green Tea boosts the immune system :- What makes this Tea special is the presence of a compound called polyphenols, most commonly known as Catechins. Catechins are anti-fungal, anti-bacterial and help remove pathogens from the body. It is important to note that Catechin content of Green Tea varies greatly depending on area of cultivation, harvest season, and processing technique.
  •  Green Tea protects your body against Cancer :- Green Tea contains several Catechins, the star among them is EGCG. EGCG has been found to inhibit the growth of cancerous cells in human Lukemia, renal cancers, Skin cancers, Mouth cancers, and Prostate cancers. These studies are significant because studies conducted on animals have shown that Green Tea prevents the development of many cancers triggered by carcinogens (cancer causing particles). Study also shows that EGCG stops angiogenesis ( formation of new blood vessels) around cancer cells.
  • Green Tea protects your heart:- Green tea has significant amounts of Flavonoids, a kind of antioxidant that protect against heart disease.  It slows down the breakdown of LDL cholesterol preventing blood clots and improving blood vessel function.  Since drinking Green Tea is associated with lower Cholesterol it results in less case of artery blockages.

Which Green Tea to choose?

When looking for a good tea, look for something which has good content of EGCG . The picture on the left shows the ranking of teas with respect to concentration of EGCG. Gyokuro Tea is my favorite, and it ranks second in terms of concentration of EGCG i.e has very high concentration of EGCG followed by Sencha Tea, Matcha Tea.
If you are in India, you might not find Gyokuro Tea, but Sencha and Matcha Tea can be found on Amazon website. As a general rule, Japanese teas contain far more EGCG than Chinese teas. 

How should you brew it?

The brewing period is also an important factor while making Tea. An infusion of less than five minutes allows only the extraction of 20% of Catechins. Therefore, it’s always a good idea to brew it for minimum 8-10 minutes.

Tea is an exquisite medicine that may prolong human life. The mountain country and the valleys where tea grow is holy and powerful. If you collect the young shoots, use them to brew tea and then drink the beverage, you will enjoy a long life. –EisaiKissa Yojoki (“Drinking tea for health”)

In summary, Green Tea contains large amount of Catechins, compound that boast many anti-cancer properties, and prevent you with various other diseases. If you do not like it’s taste or you have hard time adjusting to it’s taste, you can add little bit of Honey or any sweetener or a dash of fresh lemon juice to make it taste better. The tea master Sen-no-Rikyu said that the ritual of tea consisted of nothing more than act of boiling water, making tea, and drinking it. With all that we have learned since then, we can add a fourth action to the master’s list : Keeping us healthy.

Love and peace always,