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Health Benefits of White Tea: The New Fountain of Youth

September 8th, 2009

white-tea-health-benefits.jpgFor the last 4700 years, tea has been consumed as both a medicinal and social beverage. Early science began speculating on the health benefits of various forms of vegetation when steeped in hot water to create an herbal infusion. Ancient civilizations relied on teas to cure everything from serious physical ailments such as tumors to mild like skin lesions, and they were even thought to cure mysterious brain and psychological ailments.

While herbal teas have been surpassed by modern pharmaceuticals as the primary source of treatment, teas are still very much enjoyed and their popularity is surging as modern science is proving that certain teas do indeed contain beneficial properties. Teas may not be the latest pseudo cure for cancer nor will they mysteriously melt away those pesky extra pounds, but select teas are being accredited with bona fide health benefits.

White Tea is the latest tea to come under the health microscope. Unlike black teas which are oxidized prior to curing, white teas are left unoxidized and uncured. In addition, white teas may contain younger tea leaves and buds which contain higher levels of caffeine.

White tea originates from Fujian, a province in China. The leaves can come from a variety of tea plants, and are available in a variety of quality grades. The very best white tea called Silver Needle is harvested in Fujian Province exclusively between March 15 and April 10. Only the unopened and undamaged buds will qualify for this top grade of white tea.

Sri Lanka and various areas in India also produce white teas, and some select white teas are being exported from Africa. Regardless of the origin, the health benefits of white tea are unsurpassed. Due to its lack of processing, white tea has higher levels of catechin, theobromine and gallic acid. Catechin is a flavonoid that is also found in cocoa and chocolate. Catechins have been extensively studied and have been found to reduce the risk of diabetes, cancer, stroke and even heart failure.

Theobromine is an alkaloid which, while studied less extensively than catechin, is no less nutritionally important. Considered a stimulant similar to caffeine, theobromine is accredited with such health benefits as lowering blood pressure and increasing seratonin, which can elevate mood and is being used as a replacement for codeine when used as a cough suppressant.

Also found in concentrated quantities in white tea, gallic acid acts as an antioxidant which protects our bodies on a cellular level. It also has anti-viral and anti-fungal properties. This potent component in tea is showing potential in the fight against cancer, and has shown progress in the study of treatments for diabetes.

Teas are also being heralded as having beneficial affects on metabolism, lowering cholesterol and blood sugars, and aiding in hydration and relaxation. White teas, with their higher concentrations of all things beneficial, are the teas of choice for those who are consuming tea for their health benefits.

The delicate flavors and aromas of white teas make them a pleasurable hot beverage that is soothing not only to the body but also to the mind if you consider that with each sip, you’re consuming a variety of components which are aiding your body from the individual cells to the stress-relieving sigh when you take a moment to relax with a cup of white tea.

Related articles:

Health Benefits of Different Kinds of Tea

Karlonian Iced Tea Recipe

Jennifer Allen is a professional writer and chef who has now managed to achieve a total of 36 article submissions and 22 sales at Constant Content.

One Response to “Health Benefits of White Tea: The New Fountain of Youth”

  1. comment number 1 by: Ann Trenton

    Tea has been used as medicine for centuries. Now modern science is discovering what people in China and throughout the world have long known: tea is good for you. While green and black tea are very healthy, white tea is the least processed tea and has the highest antioxidant levels. It may be the supreme Drink of Health.

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