Wouldn't it be lovely if there were an inexpensive, delicious beverage that could benefit your skin, fight fat and cancer, and get you going in the morning? As luck would have it there is - white tea.
White Tea: Cure for All?
Many of us are familiar with the health benefits of green tea. But did you know that white tea is even more powerful than green tea? It also contains significantly less caffeine. No wonder everyone from Oprah to Dr. Oz to Alima’s own Kate have been spreading good cheer about this healing and salubrious natural treat.
White tea was a favorite drink of the Asian nobility for centuries. Known for it’s delicate fragrance and taste, it stems from the Camilla Sinensis tea bush. White tea’s immature leaves are plucked before ripened, and then--rather than being air-dried--freshly steamed for drinking.
White Tea and its Health Benefits:
Obesity: A 2009 study suggested that white tea increases metabolism and helps the body to utilize and burn fat more efficiently. Further research is currently being conducted to better understand the link between white tea and metabolism.
Skin: High level of antioxidants found in white tea help foster glowing, younger-looking skin by reducing inflammation which is linked to premature aging, Rosacea, and other forms of skin irritation. White tea also boosts the immune system’s response to sun exposure, while lessening or reversing wrinkles and pigmentation caused by sun damage. Aside from drinking white tea, look for white tea extract in many of the best sun and skin care products available on the market.
Hair: White and Green tea are reputed to lessen hair loss by increasing globulin, which assists with the usability of sex hormones in the body. So far, there are no clinical studies to cement these findings, but antidotal evidence appears promising.
Heart: Catechins (a type of antioxidant found in white tea) lower blood pressure and bad cholesterol, raise good cholesterol, improve artery function, and help protect against heart disease and stroke.
Mood: While coffee’s caffeine content is linked to higher levels of the stress hormone, Cortisol, white tea has a calming effect on anxiety and emotional wellbeing. This has to do with the presence of L-theanine, which raises seratonin, dopamine and GABA (associated with mood and concentration) levels in the brain
Hormones: White tea’s many antioxidants improve bone strength in post-menopausal women, leading to better bone density and a decrease in osteoporosis and arthritis. Also, L-theanine, found in white tea, is capable of calming some of the mood swings related to both PMS and menopause.
Teeth: Fluoride is found in small levels in white tea, helping to prevent tooth decay and loss. It also kills bacteria responsible for plaque build-up and bad breath.
Blood Sugar: High levels of polyphenolics (found in white tea and red wine) help alleviate and even prevent symptoms of Diabetes; white tea is currently being studied for use in conjunction with, or in place of, conventional Diabetes medication.
Immune Function: The antioxidants in white tea contain both antiviral and antibacterial effects. This means a strengthened immune system and increased resistance against certain illnesses and diseases.
Cancer Prevention/Treatment: Antioxidants are known for their potent cancer-fighting potential. According to Oregon State University, white tea is the most powerful type of tea in terms of cancer prevention and treatment. The high levels of polyphenols, found in all teas, are protected from degradation by the particular manner in which white tea is processed and prepared.
White tea can be enjoyed in tea bags. However, it’s true health-giving properties are best activated in loose form. According to recent studies, drinking 2-4 cups a day of steamed loose tea is ideal.
If you are a devoted coffee drinker, try integrating a pot of white tea, alongside coffee, into your daily routine. This doesn’t require giving up coffee, but rather, enjoying tea as an adjunct to coffee and other drinks. Because of white tea’s low caffeine content, this complimentary approach is a perfectly feasible and safe.
Can’t get enough white tea? For a delicately sweet, clean-smelling scent, check out some of these white tea based fragrances: Parfum d’empire: Osmanthus Interdite, L’Occitane: White Tea EDT, Bath and Bodyworks: White tea and Ginger, or Bulgari’s gorgeous scent: Au The Blanc