You’ve heard about green tea, black tea, oolong, and even red tea… but have you heard of “white tea” and its myriad of health benefits? White tea, unlike most other tea forms, is created from the immature leaves of the tea plant (Camellia sinensis), picked right before the buds open. Besides, tea do come in many forms and is the most commonly consumed beverage in the world next to water.
Black and green tea is indeed widely popular in the western world. White tea, on the other hand, is native to China which has gained popularity due to disease-fighting components coupled with low caffeine content. White tea is the least processed of them but with very impressive benefits as listed below.
The name originally came from the fuzzy substance that covers the tea buds, however it can also be a reference to the process used on the leaves. Essentially, the longer the tea is left out to oxidize, the darker it becomes. In the case of white tea, the leaves are steamed and dried immediately after harvesting. This results in a very light, delicate flavor that has none of the bitterness of black tea, or the herb-like aftertaste of green tea. It has weaved in and out of popularity over the centuries, but its description as a “rarity and a luxury” by none other than Chinese Emperor Hui Zong has never waned.
While white tea is still considered a rare type nowadays, it has also regained much of its popularity due to its health benefits. The immature tea buds contain a higher level of catechins than in other types of tea, and it is these catechins that offer most of tea’s antioxidant properties. The minimal processing done on the leaves also means most beneficial compounds are well-preserved.
Here is a rundown of 10 white tea benefits, backed by solid scientific research that would have you brewing your own cup today!
Benefits of White Tea
1. Cancer Prevention
Just like green tea, white tea can be beneficial in preventing cancer, such as lung cancer. It has antimutagenic properties.
White tea contains high amounts of the antioxidant catechin. This antioxidant inhibits the growth of cancer cells.
It can also reduce the risk of recurrence for breast cancer survivors.
2. Contains Antibacterial & Antiviral Properties
White tea is a natural killer of viruses and bacteria.
It contains copious antioxidants capable of toning the entire immune system, providing protection against disease causing microorganisms and offering protection from a wide range of diseases including flu.
It can also alleviate the symptoms of HIV.
3. Weight Management
White tea contains caffeine which helps enhance weight loss. White tea is also known to contain high levels of antioxidants that can boost your metabolism and help curb appetite.
Also, research about white tea shows that it can promote the breakdown of fats in fat cells while preventing new fat cells from developing.
4. Cardiovascular Health Benefits
According to a research that was carried by the American Journal of Epidemiology, drinking tea can help reduce the development of heart diseases.
It contains components such as catechins which help to dilate blood vessels thus allowing for a reduction in blood pressure and ease in the flow of blood throughout the body.
White tea contains the highest amount of catechins compared to black and green tea.
5. Oral Health Benefits
Health benefits of white tea include improvements in oral health.
The presence of such components such as tannins, flavonoids and polyphenols helps in inhibiting growth of bacteria that may cause plaque formation.
White tea also contains some Fluoride content which can be effective in reducing dental carries.
6. Healthy Skin
Free radicals when staying out under the sun for long periods, a poor diet and stress, can damage the skin and cause it to age prematurely.
By scavenging these free radicals, white tea can protect the skin and helps to reverse some of the damage. White tea promotes a healthy and radiant skin.
7. White Tea Contributes to Bone Health
Regular consumption of white tea can help to improve bone density and strength. It can also provide relief from the symptoms of osteoporosis.
8. Effects of Diabetes
Outcomes of a research study showed that intake of white tea can provide relief to people suffering from diabetes on symptoms such as increase in insulin secretion, excessive thirst and decrease in plasma glucose levels.
9. Lowers Cholesterol
Antioxidant catechin found in white tea has been found to reduce cholesterol.
There is good cholesterol and bad cholesterol, and white tea is known for increasing the good type while reducing the bad. This prevents the hardening of arteries.
10. Lowers Blood Pressure
Studies have found that white tea has a capacity to thin the blood and improve the function of arteries. This helps to lower high blood pressure and maintain a steady one.
White tea also guards against the ravages of stroke by promoting strong and healthy blood vessels.
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