What is oolong tea?
Oolong tea is made from the true Chinese tea plant (Camellia sinensis) and originally comes from the southeastern regions of China. Many popular varieties of Oolong also come from Taiwan. Tea is considered to be a semi-fermented variety and is found between non-oxidized green tea and heavily oxidized black tea. Green tea, oolong tea and black tea are all made from the same leaves, with different production methods ultimately responsible for each distinctive taste.
Fresh green tea leaves are not crushed and oxidized in the open air; with black tea, on the other hand, the leaves are very crushed in order to obtain a particularly large quantity of juice for fermentation. With oolong tea, the oxidation of the leaves is precisely controlled by laborious manual work. The leaves wither after being harvested for some time in the open air. To squeeze small amounts of juice out of the leaves, they are now carefully rubbed together and shaken. The juice of the leaves then oxidizes in the open air. To stop this natural fermentation process, the oolong leaves are heated. Oolong teas are fermented between 15 and 70 percent. The less oxidized the juice of the leaves is, the milder the flavor of the finished tea will be.
Being a semi-fermented tea, oolong is nutritious and provides some important minerals and botanicals, including:
- amino acids
3 health benefits of Oolong tea
It can promote heart health
Teas such as oolong tea can be beneficial for heart and blood vessel health due to their high levels of antioxidant polyphenols. Antioxidants have blood pressure and cholesterol-lowering effects. In a study with 76,000 subjects from Japan, researchers found that people who drank about a quarter liter of oolong tea per day had a 61 percent reduced risk of developing cardiovascular disease. Chinese researchers found that consuming one to two cups of oolong tea a day significantly reduced the risk of suffering a stroke.
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Supports the brain
Not only does the caffeine in oolong tea briefly stimulate nerve cells in the brain, thereby increasing our ability to work and focus, researchers have found that regular consumption of amino acids from tea in combination with caffeine can have a protective effect on the brain. . For example, older Chinese black and oolong tea drinkers had better cognitive function and ability than the comparison groups. The regular release of messenger substances such as dopamine is also beneficial for the general condition of the brain. Dopamine, for example, is released in the body by caffeine.
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It can have anticancer effects
Secondary plant substances such as the polyphenols contained in oolong tea have antioxidant effects. Researchers have been studying the health properties of polyphenols for some time. Now a clear picture is emerging: the antioxidant plant substances in green tea and black tea have health benefits. Since oolong tea is on the spectrum between green tea and black tea, such effects can be assumed here as well. Researchers, for example, have found that the antioxidants in tea may have anti-cancer functions in the human body. The risk of developing certain cancers would be reduced by regular tea consumption.