Five Significant types of components found in all teas
- Essential Oils = aroma
- Polyphenols = antioxidants
- Phytonutrients = vitamins, minerals, amino acids
- Enzymes = promote tea leaf oxidation
- Methylxanthines = stimulants and muscle relaxants (Caffeine, Theophylline, Theobromine)
Health Benefits of Drinking Tea
- Tea (specifically Black and Green) contains important antioxidants. Research suggests these phytonutrients may contribute substantially to the promotion of health and the prevention of chronic disease.
- Tea-drinking has been associated with oral health and bone health.
- Compounds in tea other than flavonoids have been shown to support the human immune system.
- Preliminary research suggests that drinking tea may have effects on body weight, fat accumulation and insulin activity
The Process of Becoming Tea
with·er·ing [wĭth’еr-ĭng] (v.): The process by which the moisture content of the leaf is reduced physically and chemically to prepare the leaf for processing.
roll·ing [roh-ling] (n.): Rolling breaks the cell wall structures of the tea leaf allowing the oxidase enzymes within the cells to initiate the oxidation process.
ox·i·da·tion [ŏk’sĭ-dā’shеn] (n.): A reaction in which the atoms in an element lose electrons and the valence of the element is correspondingly increased. An apple that has been cut and starts to brown is a good example of this reaction.
fir·ing [fahyuhr-ing] (n.): During this final process, the tea leaves are dried by being passed slowly under hot dry air at a carefully controlled temperature.
sort·ing [sawr-ting] (n.): At the end of the process, leaves are sorted visually by size and color or mechanically by size, into lots of like tea leaves. This is a preliminary part of the grading system.
terroir [tεrwar] (n.): In tea, terroir refers not only to the climate and soil of the region, but also the weather of the 7 to 10 days of the leaf’s life on the bush before it was plucked.