Tannin, caffeine, and Antioxidants – which tea is better?
Black, green or white? Which tea is more useful and why? How does caffeine in tea differ from caffeine in coffee? What is so good match tea? And what kind of herbal tea to drink, to improve digestion and immunity? The answers to these and other questions about tea are in this post.
Green, black, white
Black, green, white tea and oolong are made from the plant of Camellia sinensis, and they differ, mainly, by processing methods. In the process of fermentation, tea leaves are crushed and rolled out and during the oxidation their composition changes at the phytochemical level. White tea is made from buds and young leaves, green – from more mature. Both these types refer to unfermented tea, rich in catechins – polyphenols, which have antioxidant properties. They strengthen the cardiovascular system, reduce the risks of tumour diseases and improve digestion.
The longer the fermentation process lasts, the less useful catechins in tea (for comparison: in green – 70 mg per 100 ml of brewed tea, in white – 42 mg, in oolong – 34 mg, in black tea – 9 mg). That is why it is believed that green tea is more useful than black tea. Numerous studies show that regular consumption of green tea improves our metabolism, immunity, memory and even prolongs life.
The longer the green tea is brewed, the more catechins it contains. In green tea, boiled for 5 minutes, 4 times (!) More catechins than in the same tea, brewed for 1 minute. It is also believed that adding a little lemon to the tea and holding it in your mouth for a few seconds before swallowing, we make the catechins of tea more bioactive and simplify their assimilation by the body.
Polyphenols are readily soluble only in hot water, which is why tea is not brewed with cold water. At the same time, the cooled tea leaves are often cloudy – this is also a property of polyphenols. If the cooling did not become cloudy, this means that the content of beneficial polyphenols in tea is shallow.
A serving of caffeine
The caffeine content in tea is influenced by many factors: the type of tea, climate, soil, as well as the degree of fermentation of tea leaf and the method of its collection. Still matters the water temperature when brewing tea. The hotter the water, the more caffeine is released. About how much caffeine contains tea, you can find a lot of conflicting information. According to one data, black tea contains more caffeine than oolong tea or green tea. Others say that green tea is less fermented than black, so it retains more caffeine – about 70-80 mg per cup of tea.
Caffeine in tea acts on the body more gently than caffeine in coffee. In tea, caffeine is not present in pure form, but in combination with tannin – together they form a thein, which is slowly absorbed into the blood. It is believed that the caffeine in tea does not develop an addiction. But in any case, drinks containing caffeine are not recommended for children, since they act excitedly on the fragile nervous system. Also, caffeine is not recommended for adults with high blood pressure, pregnant and lactating women (the amount of black and green tea should not exceed two cups a day).
★ Herbal tea, spice tea, and rooibos do not contain caffeine, but if you exclude caffeine, always carefully read the composition – often among the ingredients of herbal tea, you can find green tea.
In Japan, a tea match has been drinking for 900 years. Buddhist monks drank a cup of this elixir before starting meditation. Tea match is made from leaves called tenta, crushed into powder. These leaves are grown in the shade, hide from the sun, which significantly increases the content of chlorophyll in them – this explains the emerald colour of the powder match. The leaves of the match are collected manually and steamed to avoid oxidation. The match has the highest content of antioxidants in comparison with other types of tea (three times more than in green), it energises, even though caffeine in it is half as much as in coffee, and strengthens the immune system.
Loose or in bags?
Many tea bags are covered with epichlorohydrin – a potential carcinogen. If you use tea bags, choose in favour of tea in unbleached paper bags (unbleached) – they are safe for health.
Herbal tea that makes us better
- When there is no strength: mint.
- When I caught a cold: Echinacea, ginger, tea with turmeric, mint, chamomile.
- For detox: dandelion, rooibos, burdock root, ginger.
- For a portion of vitamins: nettle (calcium, B vitamins, iron); hibiscus (vitamin C).
- To improve digestion: fennel, ginger, mint, licorice (licorice).
In Ayurveda, it is believed that the right combinations of herbs contribute to the balance of doshas. Representatives of cotton wool are recommended tea from licorice, ginger, cinnamon, fennel, thyme, cloves, eucalyptus. These herbs help to relax and improve digestion.
For the constitution of the pita fit: raspberry, burdock root, dandelion root, mint, hibiscus – they also improve digestion, make the mind clearer and help cope with turbulent emotions. For Kapha type, recommend ginger, peppermint, cinnamon, cardamom, thyme – these herbs enhance the mood and are invigorating.
“I’m a big fan of tea, and I recommend making tea drinking an integral part of your day. It does not matter when you drink it: in the morning, in the afternoon or the evening before going to bed. By the way, in Ayurveda it is believed that drinking a small amount of hot tea, we improve digestion, “- Kimberly Snyder, nutritionist, author of the best-selling book Beauty Detox.
“In the mornings I drink a tea called” rune “- it is a tea with a low content of caffeine from the super-lists originated from South America. When I need strength and inspiration, I drink yerba mate. I love the match, but for me, it’s too high in caffeine (I try not to exceed 30 mg to make it easier to fall asleep in the evening), “- Sarah Gottfried, gynaecologist, and hormonal expert.
“I recommend all one or two cups of green tea a day. It is proved that green tea is a very effective way to improve metabolism and reduce weight, “- Mark Hyman, the founder of the clinic of functional medicine, the author of the bestseller” Eat Fat, Get Thin “.