Green tea has gained a lot of attention in the western world recently, prompted as a marvellous solution to a variety of ails. However, the west was slow on the uptake considering that green tea has been traced back to about 2800 BC.
Until recently, Asian consumers saturated the green tea market while North Americas, Europeans and North Africans favoured black tea varieties. So what benefits were they missing out on?
- Assist with weight loss via stimulating your metabolism
- Help lower cholesterol levels
- Aid in regulating blood sugar levels for diabetics as some studies suggest it increases insulin activity
- Have antibacterial and antiviral properties that encourage a healthy immune system
- Be beneficial for dental health as it contains polyphenols, an antioxidant which helps to eradicate the bacteria which causes plaque which can lead to numerous more serious conditions
- Act as a diuretic
In addition, green tea has a lovely little hit of caffeine- approximately 20 milligrams per cup. Most people consider this quantity to be enough to give them a lift and appreciate that it is considerably lower than the alternatives, black tea having approximately 55 milligrams per cup and coffee a substantial 100.
Black and green tea aren’t all that different however; you can consider them cousins. They are both derived from varieties of the same plant, Camelia sinesis, but become unique from each other mainly in the processing. Green tea does not endure the oxidising process that black tea does which affects the colour. Despite this process, many of the properties remain the same including similar levels of amino acids, fibre, proteins minerals and carbohydrates.
While a portion of the world consider green tea to be a staple, others have found it to be an acquired taste.
Is it for you?
The best advice we can give is to try it! Just be sure to relish it in moderation (oh yes, that old chestnut). It is one of the most popular drinks in the world and has stood the test of time- the odds of liking it are in your favour.
Until next time, happy brewing!