Tea Overview

The following is an overview of some types of tea we use in our blends. Take a moment to learn about the many benefits to drinking different teas.

 

Tisane

With a title like " herbal tea," you'd think that chamomile , mint, rooibos and the like would be tea. However, all " true teas " ( green tea , black tea , etc.) are from the same plant, Camellia sinensis .

What is commonly referred to as an “herbal tea” is actually an infusion made from a plant other than Camellia sinensis . For this reason, there is a trend toward the use of terms like "tisane" (pronounced tea- zahn ).

Tisanes are usually categorized by what part of the plant they come from. Here are some examples of each of the major categories of tisanes:

* Leaf tisanes such as lemon balm, mint, lemongrass and French verbena

* Flower tisanes such as rose, chamomile, hibiscus and lavender

* Bark tisanes such as cinnamon , slippery elm and black cherry bark

* Root tisanes such as ginger , echinacea and chicory

* Fruit/berry tisane such as raspberry, blueberry, peach and apple

* Seed/spice tisanes such as cardamom.

Tisanes may also be classified as medicinal or not. While many tisanes are high in antioxidants and nutrients, some have long histories of medicinal use, while others are typically consumed for simple enjoyment.

 

Oolong Tea

There are numerous kinds of tea in this world; but oolong tea might be one of the most beneficial. The origins of oolong tea date back almost 400 years. It is a semi-green fermented tea, but the fermentation process is halted as soon as the tea leaves start to change their color giving them a reddish color and "flowery" flavor.

Oolong tea is rich in antioxidants. It also contains vital vitamins and minerals such as calcium, manganese, copper, carotin, selenium, and potassium, as well as Vitamin A, B, C, E and K. Additionally, it contains folic acid, fluoride, niacin and other detoxifying alkaloids. The semi-fermented process provides it with numerous polyphenolic compounds, adding even more valuable health benefits. Oolong tea also contains caffeine and theophylline and theobromine which are similar to caffeine.

Health benefits of oolong tea include the reduction of chronic health conditions such as heart disease, stress and weight management, inflammatory disorders, and high cholesterol levels, while providing vital antioxidants, promoting superior bone structure, robust skin and good dental health. Oolong tea is fragrant with a fruity flavor and a pleasant aroma. Despite its caffeine content, it can still be extremely relaxing to drink.

 

Black Tea

Black tea derives its dark color and full flavor from a complex fermentation process that includes exposing crushed tea leaves to the air for a strictly defined number of minutes.

Depending on how strong it's brewed, black tea contains about 50 mg of caffeine per cup. (In comparison, green tea contains 8 to 30 mg per cup, while coffee contains 100-350 mg).

Black tea contains a number of antioxidants, which are compounds that help the body fight free radicals (chemical by-products known to damage DNA). These antioxidants include quercetin, a substance said to combat inflammation and support healthy immune function. A study performed at Boston's School of Medicine had concluded that drinking four cups of black tea a day can help reverse an abnormal functioning of the blood vessels that can contribute to stroke or heart attack. Furthermore, a study of over 3,000 adults in Saudi Arabia - where black tea is favored over other types of tea - found that regular consumption of the dark brew can reduce the risk of coronary heart disease by fifty percent!

 

White Tea

White tea is made from immature tea leaves that are picked shortly before the buds have fully opened. The tea takes its name from the silver fuzz that still covers the buds, which turns white when the tea is dried. The exact proportion of buds to leaves varies depending on the variety of white tea. For example, White Peony contains one bud for every two leaves. Tea leaves destined to be sold as white tea undergo less processing than green tea leaves. Instead of air-drying, the unwithered leaves are merely steamed. The result? A pale tea with a sweet, silky flavor. People who have tried both note that white tea lacks the "grassy" aftertaste so often associated with green tea.

Studies indicate that white tea is better for you. Leaving tea leaves so close to their natural state means that white tea contains more polyphenols, the powerful anti-oxidant that fights and kills cancer-causing cells, than any other type of tea. A 2004 study at Pace University concluded that white tea can help your body's immune system fight off viruses and dangerous infection-causing bacteria. The same study concluded that fluoride-rich white tea helps prevent the growth of dental plaque, the chief cause of tooth decay.

 

Rooibos

The needle-like leaves and stems of rooibos are used to make a healthful herbal tea. Demand for Rooibos is increasing among health-minded consumers in the United States and other countries, due to the herb's mild, pleasant taste, unique aroma and health benefits. Rooibos tea is caffeine-free and has lower tannin levels than green tea.

There are many health benefits with Rooibos tea. It contains polyphenols and has been shown to be anit-carcinogenic, anit-mutagenic, anti-inflammatory and anti-viral. It is full of vitamins and minerals such as calcium, zinc, copper, magnesium, manganese and fluoride to help build strong teeth and bones. Drinking Rooibos tea can provide great skin benefits since it contains alpha hydroxy acid and zinc. People with kidney stones can drink it because there’s no oxalic acid.

Rooibos tea contains a wide array of antioxidants, which help to protect the body in a number of ways. Two polyphenol antioxidants called aspalathin and nothofagin are found in high concentrations in rooibos tea. These antioxidants protect the body by fighting free radicals. These are unstable cells, which attack healthy cells in order to stabilize themselves. The polyphenols also have anti-inflammatory properties and can safeguard against heart disease.

One of the many potent antioxidants in rooibos tea is called Chysoeriol. It can improve circulation by preventing the activity of the enzyme that triggers cardiovascular disease. Drinking rooibos tea also has been known to lower blood pressure and cholesterol.

Rooibos tea can relieve stomach complaints. It contains high levels of flavonoids, especially one called quercetin. It has the ability to relieve numerous abdominal ailments such as cramps, diarrhea and indigestion. Flavonoids are known help to reduce spasms, inflammation and allergies.

Drinking rooibos tea regularly can protect against a process known as lipid peridoxation. This occurs when free radicals damage brain cells and nerve tissue. If this is prolonged, it can lead eventually to progressive and deteriorating brain diseases, such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson's.

 

Yerba Mate

Yerba mate tea is a South American beverage made by steeping the ground leaves and stems of the yerba mate plant. Yerba mate contains caffeine, but is touted as being a safe and effective stimulant with few side effects and many health benefits. It contains a number of other nutrients, including antioxidants, amino acids, polyphenols, vitamins and minerals.

Proponents of yerba mate tea say that the minerals, vitamins, antioxidants, amino acids and polyphenols found in this beverage have a balancing effect on the caffeine it contains. Users report increased mental energy, clarity and focus, but they also say that yerba mate doesn't cause any of the uncomfortable side effects associated with drinking caffeinated beverages, such as headaches, stomachaches and jitters.

The chemical compounds and nutrients in yerba mate tea affect your metabolism to make your body use carbohydrates more efficiently. This means you'll get more energy from the food you eat. You'll also burn more of the calories your body has stored in fat cells as fuel when you drink yerba mate tea regularly. Regular yerba mate consumption also helps keep lactic acid from building up in your muscles so you can decrease post workout soreness and cut your recovery time.

The native peoples of South America have long used yerba mate tea as a traditional herbal remedy against digestive ailments. It aids digestion by stimulating increased production of bile and other gastric acids.

The antioxidants and amino acids present in yerba mate help fat and cholesterol move through your bloodstream so that they don't accumulate on artery walls. Yerba mate also helps prevent arteriosclerosis (hardening of the arteries) and prevents blood clots that may cause heart attack or stroke.

 

These statements may not have been evaluated by the FDA. These teas are not intended to cure or prevent any disease.

 

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