Green Tea: Contraindications, Benefits, Types And Matcha

From the Chinese etymology pinyin: chá, comes the word “tea” and depends on the Chinese dialect used, its pronunciation may vary. It is an infusion that can be prepared from tea leaves .

It belongs to the Camelliae sinensis or Thea sinensis family, a tree that grows to several meters high and is grown in places where there are not extreme temperatures or areas of high humidity. Its beginnings take place in the Asian continent and then give way to continents such as Africa, Oceania and South America.

During their processing, they should not receive oxidation when collecting their fresh and fresh leaves. That they must go through a series of steps to be able to obtain the final result: drying, pressing, rolling, crushing and drying. If all this process is fulfilled, a tea much softer in taste can be obtained, in addition its original characteristics and benefits can be prolonged for a longer time.

The production process can also vary according to the country, that is to say that while in Japan they use steam to dry the leaves, in China they decide to heat the leaves to be able to process them.

There are other types of tea that can also be obtained through this tree, for example if its leaves are kept in a rolled way so that its oxidation (or fermentation) is produced by ‘polyphenol oxidase’ enzymes, the result is oolong or also called red tea, which is produced in China, Japan, and India. However, if this oxidation occurs for a longer time, it is when the famous black tea can be obtained, which in the West this tea is the most consumed. This allows us to conclude that these last teas that we mention have the same origin, but their way of processing them and obtaining the final product is what varies.

History of green tea

Its sowing and cultivation is carried out in many countries of the world and archaeological investigations attest and prove that the consumption of this plant has been going on for much more than 5,000 years . Its origin is from China ; In principle, green tea was consumed solely and exclusively by a small and select group of the Chinese nobility, but after the fall of the Ming Dynasty, this plant could spread to many other countries. After this, with the start of planting in India by the British, this country became one of the main producers of green tea. Including in this list Japan, Vietnam, the United States, the Russian Federation, the United Kingdom and Pakistan.

What meaning do cultures give it?

Well-being, harmony, peace, beauty and serenity are some attributes that countries such as China, Japan and India confer on it, so this drink is related and associated, on a personal level, with the spiritual search, its use being very present in places of special rituals. to achieve those levels of peace and knowledge. A very clear example of this was given in Buddhist monasteries who have a specific space called the “tea house”, usually it is done in a garden, a place where they live, perceive and appreciate those moments full of inner peace and also of humor.

On the other hand, at the level of body and physical health in traditional Chinese medicine, this tea is intended to soothe headaches, extend youth and get rid of toxins from the body.

It would be incredible to believe that Japanese universities and houses of study make this practice formal in such a way that they educate about the tea ceremony to help people make their daily life more enjoyable and pleasant, to be able to harmoniously withstand changes in climate and stations that are presented in the country, to develop refined and distinguished tastes , to practice honesty and put fears aside knowing how to handle them, have better interaction with the people around them and develop education no matter where they go.

Types of green tea

The amount and types of this tea that is consumed in these Asian countries are innumerable , so if you are from another country and do not know much about the subject, you can request help to guide you which is the best to choose. There are known options and others that are not, but that you may love because they are pleasant to the palate, the body and the mind. We leave you a list only with the most common ones, but remember that you can ask for advice or investigate to decide for the one you think you would like the most:

Lung Ching (Dragon Pit)

It is the most popular, its color is golden and it has a sweet taste. It serves to free the mind and is known to have been used by monks for many centuries.

Bancha

Its flavor is associated with hay and is extracted from a plant that bears the same name.

Gunpowdwer

In places like Morocco its consumption is very high, they prepare it in the appearance of balls, which when heated with water, open and form the infusion. Its flavor is bittersweet, so a touch of mint and sugar can often be added at the end.

Sencha

It has a strange vegetable flavor, it is widely used in Japan and its color is more or less yellow.

Gyokuro

Its use and knowledge extends to Japan and has a peculiarity that it is taken slightly hot, but not quite.

Matcha

It is the one used during the celebration of the Japanese tea ceremony, it comes in powder form and is recognized for being of the highest quality.

Bi Luo Chun

It is cultivated in the province of Sichuan (China) and taking its leaves with the hand they must be rolled up to be able to consume them.

Benefits of Green Tea

The benefits of green tea for the body are numerous: they range from enhancing the beauty of the skin to preventing heart health.

This infusion facilitates the absorption of nutrients from food and the elimination of unwanted substances, such as pesticides.

Green tea is extracted from the Camellia sinensis plant and is famous for having a high concentration of antioxidants. In green tea we also find high concentrations of carotene, vitamins C and E , substances that act to rejuvenate the body.

Green tea is rich in manganese , potassium, folic acid, and vitamins (B1, B2, C, E, K). It is also rich in tannins – which reduces the level of LDL (bad cholesterol) and strengthens the arteries and veins, favoring the prevention of heart and circulatory diseases . It has bioflavonoids and catechins, substances that prevent cell changes that lead to tumors.

During the process to get the tea leaves, it undergoes very little oxidation and retains its original color, hence the name “green tea”.

Green tea contains a high concentration of antioxidants, carotenoids, minerals, and vitamins. These substances have protective effects on our body . Therefore, they make sure to get several health benefits, as well as the prevention of many health problems:

Green tea polyphenols against Cancer

The polyphenols that green tea contains act against quinol oxidases ; These enzymes stimulate the growth of cancer cells in the intestine, esophagus, lung, breast, and skin. In addition, polyphenols also help protect healthy cells.

Prevents Heart Disease

This infusion contains an active principle that reduces the risk of adhesion of fatty plaques in the blood vessels , helping to prevent arteriosclerosis. It also has an anticoagulant effect.

Improve Acne

Green tea helps repel acne-causing bacteria and reduces inflammation. It also decreases the chances of dry skin, itching, and contact allergies.

Against immune deficiencies

One of the substances in tea, ethylemine , enhances the capacity of certain members of the immune cell system.

Improves Respiratory Allergies

Polyphenols block the cellular receptors involved in the response to allergenic stimuli that trigger the typical reactions of rhinitis.

Against Obesity

Green tea speeds up the metabolism , making it easier to burn body fat.

High Cholesterol Control

Its compounds strengthen the arteries, lower the levels of bad cholesterol and block the accumulation of fat on the walls of the blood vessels.

Prevents Premature Aging

Being rich in antioxidant flavonoids – which help neutralize free radicals – they act by fighting premature aging . On the other hand, the infusion is rich in tannins, which is a substance with antiseptic and astringent properties . Therefore, this plant is also indicated for cleaning fat and balancing the skin.

How to Prepare Green Tea Perfectly

We start by heating the water. To prepare green tea, the water does not need to boil completely, just at the beginning of boiling we must put the tea herbs.

  • To make an infusion we must with a level tablespoon of the herb for each cup of almost boiling water.
  • Let it rest for 5 minutes and strain it shortly after.

The effect of green tea is more complete if it is taken immediately after its preparation.

  • To improve immunity and prevent diseases, we must take one cup per day.
  • To lose weight: we drink 3 cups a day. These three cups must be distributed throughout the day.

For maximum effectiveness, we still have to follow a menu guided by a nutritionist. To obtain a better result, we must include the daily practice of physical exercises in a routine.

Side Effects of Green Tea

Side effects are rare when consumption is in moderation.

One of the most common effects for many people is an upset stomach. The tannins in green tea increase stomach acid . So if you drank the tea before eating, it may give you a stomachache, feeling nauseous or cause constipation. It is best to drink green tea after a meal or between meals.

The catechins in green tea can cause a decrease in the absorption of iron from food . If you have iron deficiency anemia, drinking tea much later or before meals is recommended.

Since green tea has caffeine , people who have an intolerance to the substance may experience some discomforts such as headaches, irritation and tremors.

L-Theanine from Green Tea

L-theanine, an amino acid present in green tea, has a structural similarity to glutamine and other neurotransmitters that are produced from it (GABA and glutamate) and is known to have actions on the central nervous system (brain).

The main property of L-theanine is to act as a relaxing agent without sedation . It is also associated with a reduction in the perception of stress and improves attention. Therefore, while L-theanine does not appear to induce sleep, it can improve the quality of sleep due to its relaxing effect.

L-THEANINE BENEFITS

  • Control anxiety and stress
  • Protects the central nervous system
  • It enhances sleep quality
  • Has protective action on the liver
  • Protects the cardiovascular system

The recommended amount per day is 200 to 500 mg.

And Matcha tea, is it also green tea?

Matcha is a more powerful version of green tea, with even more antioxidants. It is made from green tea leaf, dehydrated and ground after a particular cultivation.

As the caffeine in green tea works, it provides us with increased stimulation, in addition to catechin and phytochemicals that help prolong the feeling of being full that food produces. It has more L-theanine, producing a neuroprotective and anti-stress effect.

It is also relaxing, reducing the production of cortisol, which improves mood and acts on alpha waves (a type of brain wave linked to tranquility and concentration).

The most proven effects are cancer prevention due to antioxidants that prevent damage at the level of the cell structure, and in weight control , due to the thermogenic action of caffeine.

In matcha tea production, the Camellia sinensis leaves are protected from the sun with a tarp, one month before harvesting. Once collected, they are rolled up and exposed to water vapor. Dry naturally, they oxidize and preserve their natural polyphenols . At the end, they are ground and processed into a green powder.

The flavor of matcha is milder, less bitter than green tea, and its powder can be used in recipes or mixed with hot or cold drinks.

How to use

Matcha can be prepared as an alternative and very quickly . You just have to put the hot water in it and mix until bubbles form on the edges of the cup. It is also often used in green and vitamin juices.

Where to buy green tea and Matcha tea

Green tea can be easily found in any food sales area, both small and large, matcha is more complicated if you live outside of Argentina. If you prefer to buy it online, we leave you a list with the most recommended:

  • Organic Green Tea – 200 tablets of 400 mg
  • Hornimans – Green Tea – Pure – 100 sachets
  • Matcha Green Tea Powder – Powerful Organic Japanese Culinary Grade Antioxidant – 4 oz (113 grams)
  • Ambivitalis – Matcha Organic balanced green tea powder, 100 gr. in a zip-lock bag

All types of green tea and their different varieties can be found at this link .

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Kathie Sand always saw the world of beauty as the terrain on which to build her professional career, a goal that was clear to her when she was only 15 years old. Her great concern to expand knowledge led her to settle in Paris where she studied hand in hand with the best beauty professionals and with the most advanced techniques for skin care.

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