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Drink Tea and Enjoy Good Health

Submitted by Stella Morgan on July 27, 2007

Tea is widely known for its therapeutic benefits and is referred to as ‘wonder drug’. It promotes good health and is rejuvenating. It refreshes the tired mind and body. Research reveals the increased longevity of Japanese people and is attributed to their tea drinking.  Water is the most commonly and largely drunk liquids, followed by tea. It is an integral part of all social gatherings and the most popular beverage.

Preparation of tea varies in every country. It is made from the flowers, leaves and stalks of the tea plant, Camelia sinensis. The commonly drunk tea varieties are black tea, green tea, ginseng tea, oolong tea and herbal tea.

Leaf processing techniques are different and the intensity of processing determines the kind of tea, namely oolong (red), black or green. Minimum processing is seen in green tea. Prior to packaging, the leaves are steamed.

Drying, crushing and fermentation are the steps in the preparation of black and red tea. Blackening of leaves depend on the duration of fermentation process, based on which black or red tea is prepared.

Tea is anticarcinogenic, due to its potent antioxidant activity.

Polyphenols are the chemicals producing its antioxidant property. Oolong tea tastes similar to green tea, but is brewn strong. It falls between black and green in its oxidative capacity. A sweet and pleasant after taste is experienced. The leaves are rolled in the shape of a ball or long curly rolls. Black tea is a potent cholesterol detoxifier, cancer blocker, heart tonic, immune stimulant and virus fighter.

Health benefits also include protection against oxidative stress. It prevents the damage by the free radicals and act as scavengers of free radicals.  Polyphenols in tea deactivates cancer producing cells and its proliferation. It protects from blood clotting and reduces the cholesterol levels. It boosts the immunity of individuals. A cup of tea provides half the quantity of caffeine, when compared with an equal cup of coffee. It helps for strong teeth and has negligible calories.
An unique amino acid found in tea is thenine, in addition to certain minerals, vitamins and methylxanthines. These are the chemical components contributing to the therapeutic value of tea. These components delay ageing, fights hypertension, bacterial and viral infection, improvises the functioning of renal and digestive system. They also hinder with the mutagenic agents and fights hypertension.

Two to four glasses of tea per day is beneficial in protecting the body from degenerative diseases, such as cancer and heart diseases. Green tea contains catechins, which are polyphenols. These catechins are potent enough in inhibiting the free radicals. It reduces the risk of lung cancer in smokers. It inhibits the process of commencement and multiplication or proliferation of cancerous cells.
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