Drink To Your Health

Features Issue 185 Apr, 2017
Text by Sajan Shreemali

Studies continue to show the beneficial value of regularly having a cup of tea. Not to mention, it's just plain good!

A tea mood is usually driven by a wakeup call in the morning. A daily dose of three to four cups of tea is what we expect on a regular basis. Tea is often a habit, a medium forstress reduction, taste, and relaxation. More people, more techniques and reasons for tea. Tea is undoubtedly the most accepted drink all over the world. Despite this fact, do we really know what tea is?

Tea is natural vegetation that grows mostly in the tropical climate of Asia, Africa, and South America. It is made from the leaves of Camellia sinensis, which is a flowering plant of the family Thecae. You must have heard that some people prefer CTC tea to organic tea, or vice versa. So, what is the process that setsthe twoapart, even if they are from the same leaves? And, how do we know which one is better for our health? Let’s find out.

Apart from the growing process, there’s a lot of difference in the processing method of the leaves. Some leaves are allowed to wilt and are fermented,so that they undergo a higher level of oxidation. Generally, the method is known as CTC (Crushing-Tearing-Curling) where the leaves are crushed, torn, and curled to speed up the oxidation process, so that theycan be fully oxidized within one to three hours. Hence, the color of tea turns black, and it becomes CTC tea. On the other hand, some leaves are instantly heated after being collected, thus undergoing minimal oxidation process. This is done either by steaming or pan frying process. As these leaves are the least oxidized teas,they remain in their original pre-plucked state. The color remains green. This is what we call organic tea. In comparison to CTC tea, organic tea is highly appreciated for its health benefits.

Organic green tea was initially cultivated in China, and subsequently it became associated with lifestyle throughout Asia. Moreover, in India and many Western countries, where black tea is traditionally consumed, there is growing popularity of organic tea. Over the past 40 years, many studies have been done on organic tea to determine its long-term health benefits. It has been observed that the content of the nutrient Epigallo catechin 3-gallate in a cup of organic tea is higher than that in the same volume of other food and drink items traditionally considered as health contributing, including fresh fruits, vegetable juices, and wine.

The health dimensions of organic tea are way above our realizations. Consuming three to four cups of organic green tea a day will help to combat our aging problems. As it is very rich in antioxidants, it helps to neutralize free radicals, and the natural rust in our body occurring due to the oxidation process. We can easily notice how refreshed and energetic we feel after having organic tea at around any time of the day. This is because it contains caffeine, which stimulates our body and reduces laziness and fatigue. Researchers have also explained the immunity-boosting mechanism of organic tea within the body. Daily consumption of tea also helps to reduce body fat, which suggests that the ingestion of catechins (nutrient present in tea) might be useful in the prevention and improvement of lifestyle-related diseases, mainly obesity. Being enriched with catechins, they are full of antioxidants that fight and prevent against cell damage.

Due to the advancement in technology and research, scientists have been able to find out the potential ingredients in organic tea that can even fight against some of the major health diseases like cancer, gallstone, cholesterol, and cardiovascular diseases.

However, some precautions should be taken when having organic tea. Of course, green tea has numerous positive effects on health, but consumers should also take care of its usage and preparing methods. We should keep in mind that once tea is boiled and ready for drinking, it shouldn’t be boiled again. If it is, it will lose its nutrients and properties. Unlike orthodox and CTC tea, we cannot add sugar to this drink, though it is bitter in taste. Furthermore, excessive use of green tea in daily use has a direct impact on blood pressure. Excessive consumption of organic tea can decrease the blood pressure, making people with low pressure dizzy.

All in all, it is a healthy body and mind that everyone seeks, and people spend lots of money on allopathic treatment, gyms, and diets for their wellbeing. Now, it’s time to act smart and prepare for the use of the most beneficial drink, which anyone can afford. Organic green tea is something that people will love to spend on,with the firm assurance that it is the best substitute to other drinks.