“Spice a dish with love & it pleases every palate.”

~Plautus

 

“Tea is a divine herb.”

~Xu Guangqi

“If you combine good flavors, food turns into an orchestra.”

~Joey Fatone

 

“To plant a garden is to believe in tomorrow.”

~Audrey Hepburn

 

Let’s get scienTEAfic

Health Benefits

We all know that a warm cup of tea feels great to the body and the soul. But did you know that drinking tea regularly can benefit your overall health. Click on the tabs below to see the science behind the health benefits of different teas.

Antioxidants

We have all heard that antioxidants are good for us. But here is a simple scientific explanation of why antioxidants are good for us. When oxygen is metabolized, they create destructive cellular byproducts or free radicals which steal electron from other molecules. If our cells are weak, our organs, tissues and skin will also become weakened. You are exposed to free radicals as a normal bi-product of regular bodily processes, like breaking down the food we eat, taking certain medicines, as well as through exposure to pollutants. Antioxidants stop the cellular chain reaction of oxidation by neutralizing the free radicals. All teas from the camellia tea plant are rich in polyphenols, which are a type of antioxidant. Green tea especially has a high concentration of epigallocatechin gallate EGCG – an antioxidant polyphenol

Heart health

EGCG subdues lipid absorption in the intestinal tract and prevented their digestion. Consumption of tea is a remedial treatment to lower lipids. By preventing the absorption into the bloodstream of the offending articles, tea can have a marked effect on lowering cholesterol. The cells lining the blood vessels are very delicate. When there is too much cholesterol in your blood, it builds up in the walls of your arteries. Endothelial cell dysfunction plays a key role in the development of clogged arteries, a process called atherosclerosis. Drinking tea improves the health of endothelial cells. People who drink green tea have better blood vessel function just 30 minutes later.

Diabetes

EGCG helps diabetics by mimicking the actions of insulin and inhibiting the liver’s production of glucose, thus lowering blood sugar. The liver produces some glucose, but the most common sugar spikes occur from the food we eat. Green tea catechins reduce the amount of glucose that passes through the intestine and into the bloodstream. This benefits diabetics by preventing blood-sugar spikes when tea is taken with meals. Tea is especially beneficial to people with Type 2 diabetes. Polyphenols and polysaccharides are effective in lowering blood sugar. Tea extract reduced the normal elevation of glucose and insulin when 50 grams of starch were ingested. The polyphenol and the polysaccharides group of tea catechins has been shown to lower blood sugars.

To burn fat

Tea increases your endurance by optimizing the body’s ability to burn fat for energy use. In order to burn fat, it must first be broken down in the fat cell and moved into the bloodstream. The antioxidant in tea, catechins, can help restrain an enzyme that breaks down the hormone norepinephrine. When this enzyme is subdued, the amount of norepinephrine increases. This hormone is used by the nervous system as a signal to the fat cells, telling them to break down fat. Therefore, more norepinephrine leads to a stronger signal being sent to the fat cell and more fat gets broken down.

Recovery

Teas help stimulate proper recovery after a hard physical workout. Antioxidants help protect the body from the oxidative stress caused by physical activities. This helps prevent damage to the body as well and enables a faster recovery. Furthermore, a good cup of tea mixed with herbs like chamomile can help you get a good night’s rest which can also help the recovery process so that you can be well rested and prepared for the day ahead.

Herbal teas like the ginger, turmeric, tulsi, etc are great for healing wounds and decreasing swelling and inflammation. The antibacterial properties of many teas can prevent infection and speed healing which can be useful for effectively treating cuts, scrapes, and bruises.

Mental Alertness

Drinking teas helps to increase blood flow and distribution of oxygen throughout the body. Healthy blood circulation and distribution of oxygen to the brain helps to decrease feelings of fatigue and increases your alertness. While all teas contain some caffeine, black teas and yerba mate have more caffeine than Green Teas. Caffeine from tea is absorbed more slowly in the body than caffeine from coffee. This gentle release promotes a longer period of alertness without a jittery rush at the start or crash at the end.

Hydration

Contrary to the common belief that the caffeine in tea dehydrates the body, tea actually rehydrates the body as well as water does. Caffeine in high doses can dehydrate, because the caffeine in both tea and coffee can have a diuretic effect by increasing blood flow to the kidneys, only when consumed in high doses – over 500 mg. Even with a really strong cup of coffee, which has a lot more caffeine than tea, you still have a net gain of fluid. The antioxidants in tea make it a better (healthier) alternative to water consumption.

Bone mineral density

Tea contains high levels of antioxidants, or, more specifically in this case, catechins. These catechins are said to build bone strength and attack the cells that destroy bone density, and they do this in a markedly similar way to prescribed osteoporosis drugs. They slow down bone resorption, so bone growth has time to catch up.

Lower risk of Alzheimer’s.

Theanine and caffeine in tea helps with increased productivity, creativity, and alertness. Caffeine pairs up well with L-theanine, too, a relaxation-promoting amino acid. In fact, the combo works in tea to reduce mental fatigue while increasing alertness and memory. EGCG actually boosts production of neural progenitor cells, which the brain can then adapt to its own needs. Polyphenols in green tea may help maintain the parts of the brain that regulate learning and memory.

Natural Sunscreen

Tea might provide protection from ultraviolet rays. Chronic exposure of solar ultraviolet (UV) light to human skin results in photoaging. UV-induced oxidative damage can be prevented by polyphenols from green tea. The Antioxidant properties of tea prevent adverse effects of UV radiation.

Cancer

While research is being done to prove that tea has cancer-fighting benefits, the current research is mixed. However, tea can help the body recover from radiation. Tea helps to protect against cellular degeneration upon exposure to radiation. Tea also helps the skin recover and heal post exposure.

Tea Making Process

Both Green and Black tea originate from the same exact plant species – Camellia Sinensis. The leaves are simply processed differently. Green tea leaves are not fermented; they are withered and steamed. Black tea leaves undergo a crushing and fermenting process.

There are two methods of tea making: The orthodox and the Crush-Tear-Curl (CTC) method. Green tea is usually made with the orthodox method and black tea is made with the CTC Method.

Orthodox Method

Leaves are spread out in a shaded area for just under one day to let the moisture evaporate so they can be rolled without damage. Rollers are used to press the leaves. In the process the chemicals stored in the leaves are released. This begins the oxidation process. Leaves are laid out for a couple of hours in a humid, room in a controlled temperature. The chemicals released in the rolling process react with the air to make the leaves turn colors due to oxidation. In the final firing process, the leaves are then dried at a 220-250˚F temperature for about half an hour in a charcoal fire heater to stop the oxidation process.

CTC Method

In the CTC method, a leaf sifter with a perforated, vibrating tray, feeds a continuous flow of withered leaf through while separating out any sticks, stones, or sand. The sifted leaf then goes into the leaf shredder and then through a series of two rotorvanes for final conditioning which starts the long oxidation process. Leaves are laid out in a humid, room in a controlled temperature for oxidation. The final step is to stop oxidation of the leaf with firing.

Caffeine occurs naturally in the tea plant, Camellia sinensis, so all brewed tea contains some caffeine. Tea is the only plant that contains L-theanine, an amino acid that promotes calm and relaxation. It works in synergy with the stimulant caffeine to induce a state of mindful alertness.

Green Tea

Green tea contains approximately 36 mg per eight-ounce cup. Typically, green tea contains about one third the amount of caffeine as a cup of coffee. Cooler water and shorter steeping time extracts less caffeine. Green tea leaves are not allowed to oxidize after rolling, which is why they have a lighter color and flavor.

Black Tea

Black tea contains approximately 110 mg per eight-ounce cup mark. Black tea contains about half the amount of caffeine as a cup of coffee. Hotter water and longer steeping time will draw out more caffeine in brewed tea. The leaves are then fully oxidized before they are dried, which is how they get their dark color and rich flavor.

Yerba Mate

There are only a handful of plants in the world that produce caffeine, and yerba mate is one of them. The yerba mate herb, which is native to South America, is used to produce a caffeinated beverage. While prepared as an infusion to create a tea-like beverage, yerba mate contains no actual tea leaves.

Herbal Teas

Herbal teas don’t actually contain any tea leaves, they comes from steeping herbs. However, here at kanTEAs, some herbal teas are mixed with green tea leaves. These herbal teas are marked as caffeinated. You have the option to order them without green tea by adding a personal note to your order.