Black and green tea are quite popular, but did you know of white? Although these three types of tea have similarities in benefits, they are also quite different in a few respects. Experts tell us a little more on each type as seen in this most beneficial teas article.
Black Tea – Hydration and Immune Boosting
This type is a morning ‘eye-opener’ as it contains 1/3 the amount of caffeine you find in a cup of coffee. Because black tea goes through fermentation, it loses most of its antioxidants in the process and so it trails the three types of tea when it comes to this element. The crushed tea leaves, when they are harvested, are exposed to air for a strict amount of time, which is how they get their color and complex flavor.
What black tea lacks in antioxidants, it makes up for in its hydration and immune system protection. Being a stimulating drink, it boosts the flow of blood to the brain and improves focus. You will be more alert after taking a cup of black tea in the morning.
If you don’t like the amount of caffeine in a mild cup, you can add some lemon to neutralize it. To make a perfect cup of tea, just bring water to boil, add your tea leaves, strain, and enjoy it black or with some milk and sweetener of choice.
Green Tea – Antioxidant-packed
When green tea leaves are harvested, they are not taken through oxidation the same way as black tea. The leaves are withered in hot air before they are pan-fried and finally heated to stabilize their flavor. Because they are not exposed to oxidation, a compound known as EGCG (epigallactocatechin gallate) is left intact. EGCG is the antioxidant known for fighting cardiovascular diseases and cancer, and so green tea is said to have these qualities.
Since there is no oxidation, the tea is rich in polyphenols which are said to aid in weight loss. Since green tea only has a 1/4th of the caffeine found in coffee, it is considered healthier and therefore a preferred beverage for drinkers in evenings or during meditation.
Being less acidic, this tea washes off built-up acid in the body and acts as a detoxifier. You may have heard it being recommended for healthier skin, stronger immune system, and improved metabolism.
To make the perfect cup of green tea, bring water to boil, then add it to a cup with green tea leaves of a tea bag. Let it sit for 3-5 minutes then strain and enjoy your tea as is.
White Tea- Lowers Bad Cholesterol
White tea is different from the two types above. It is made from the immature silvery-white hairs found in the budding flowers of a tea plant, and so its processing is a little delicate. When plucked, the young tea leaves are withered through air-drying and then packed for use.
Because they are hardly manipulated, most of the compounds in the leaves are left untouched. This tea is packed with antioxidants, polyphenols, and flavonoids. It actually boosts the highest percentage of these compounds when compared to the other two types.
You may be led to think that the beverage is actually white. Well, it is not – more like a pale yellow. Because the leaves are still immature, this tea lacks the full flavor profile of black and green tea. Drinkers describe it as sweet and silky, which is different from the grassy feel of green tea. You will not need sweeteners with this tea, thanks to that ‘better’ flavor.
What about Red Tea? – Naturally Caffeine-free
Also popular as Rooibos tea, this beverage takes most of the qualities found in black tea. In its processing, the tea goes through oxidation which takes away from its amounts of antioxidants. However, green Rooibos tea that isn’t fermented is also available.
So, what are the benefits of red tea? Because of its sweet flavor, this tea is used as a blend for other types to boost their taste profile. It is also a good addictive for dessert teas. Being naturally caffeine-free, it is preferred by some to green and black tea, and also favored as an afternoon drink to calm the mind.
It contains fewer tannins than black and green tea (these are compounds that prevent the absorption of vital nutrients such as iron) and also contains no oxalic acid, which is one of the causes of kidney stones. While red tea may not have as many antioxidants as white and green tea, it still boasts some. It could also boost heart health.
You shouldn’t add these three types of tea in one pot in an effort to gain their various benefits. It would be more beneficial to drink a cup of each at various points in the day.