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The Biochemicals of Health in Green Tea

Green tea antioxidants are of the same family as grape seed and pine bark extracts. They are polyphenols, chief of which are the flavonoids called proanthocyanidins. In green tea, the main proanthocyanidins are the catechins, and the most powerful of the catechins is Epigallocatechin Gallate (EGCG), found in the high concentrations in green tea. Why don’t other teas have similar properties  particularly since many of them come from the same plant, Camellia sinensis? Quite simply, what sets green tea apart is the way it is processed. Green tea leaves are lightly fermented and steamed, which prevents the EGCG compound from being oxidized. By contrast, black and oolong tea leaves are made from heavily fermented leaves, which results in the EGCG being converted into other compounds that are not as effective in preventing and fighting various diseases.

Mention can also be made of white tea. The main difference between white and green tea is that white tea leaves are harvested at a younger age than the green tea leaves., white tea is totally unfermented leaving even more of the EGCG intact. Second, studies have shown that the young, white tea leaves retain antioxidants in higher concentrations than does green tea. In fact, the concentration of antioxidants in white tea is approximately three times higher than in green tea. Bottom line: anything we say about the health benefits of green tea also apply to white tea, but even more so.

Green tea health benefits

As mentioned earlier, the reported benefits of green tea are many and well studied. For example, green tea may help inhibit tumor growth in a variety of cancers, including: breast, lung, and prostate cancers. Specifically, the EGCG in green tea works to suppress angiogenesis, the growth of blood vessels that tumors need to survive.Therefore assistence stopping the growth of cancer at the front end — green tea polyphenols have been shown to inhibit metastasis, the spread of cancer at the back end. And finally, EGCG is the first known natural telomerase inhibitor. That is to say, it eliminates the “immortality” of cancer cells which is their trademark and which makes them so deadly. The bottom line is that green tea is particularly effective in helping reduce the causes of leukemia, prostate cancer, breast cancer, and seems to provide some of the best protection known in terms of preventing lung cancer. It appears green tea may be able to prevent cancer causing DNA damage in smokers — a possible explanation as to why the Japanese, who are among the world’s heaviest smokers, have such a low incidence of lung cancer.

The benefits of green tea don’t stop there. It has also been shown to be effective in regulating blood sugar, reducing cholesterol and triglycerides, and in reversing the ravages of heart disease. Historically, the Japanese, who drink large amounts of green tea, have some of the lowest rates of cardiovascular disease in the world.

In summation, green tea has great benefits for the brain as well.

It serves as an effective MAO inhibitor. It also protects against brain-cell death from glucose oxidase, over-production of nitric oxide, and it lowers the amount of free iron reaching the brain – not beneficial to its functioning. The net result is that there are strong indications that green tea may play a major role in protecting against both Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s disease.  (technical data from Jon Barron)

Jiuhua Green Buddha Tea

Another Tian He regional tea

Region:

Jiu Hua Mountain, Anhui, China

Other Names:

Jiuhua Mountain Buddha Tea, Jiuhua Fo Cha, Nine Glories Buddhist Tea, Jiuhua Mao Feng

Grown on the sacred slopes of Jiu Hua Mountain, the Buddha tea’s beautiful leaves are known for a sweet, lasting fragrance.

Early spring tea made of tender plump hairy shoots, skillfully crafted by tea masters into a straight flat palm shape, with a sweet lasting aroma and a refreshing taste. Many health benefits
Water Temperature 80°C

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