Camellia Sinensis: tea
Green Tea is the unprocessed, naturally-dried leaf tips of Camellia Sinensis. It should be a transparent, light, delicate drink, clear green and full of nutrients. The tea we usually drink in UK with milk and sugar is black tea which has been chopped, fermented, heated and processed to produce the strong black drink from which vital nutrients have been lost. After the Great British cuppa green tea can take a bit of getting used to but it is a beautiful delicate and healthful drink and, like fine wines, well worth the effort of getting to know.
Green Tea for Health and Caffeine
Good green teas have a natural sweetness which means they can be drunk without adding sweeteners or milk and are rich in natural antioxidants. Recent scientific research studies suggest there are significant health benefits from drinking green Asian teas: in the East where there is a long tradition of drinking green tea, this has long been been believed .
Rich in polyphenols; low in caffeine
Green tea is very rich source of heart-protecting polyphenols and other antioxidants Special varieties of tea plant have been grown for centuries; the fresh leaves are carefully harvested and dried to create the distinctive individual delicate flavours of the different varieties. Most of the green teas in shops and supermarkets are not good examples of green tea. If you have tried green tea in the past and found it harsh or unappetising it is worth trying one from a more specialist importer.
Studies have shown green tea can help slow prostate cancer – see the BBC article: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/health/8108831.stm
Caffeine-free Tea for the Budwig Diet
Teas can be almost as high in caffeine as coffee but especially in green tea it is often thought of as having a different nature to the caffeine in coffee, more gently uplifting but this is probably due to other compounds in both drinks. If you want caffeine-free tea buying caffeine-free is considered not a good thing for the Budwig diet because chemicals and solvents are often used in the extraction of caffeine. However if you want caffeine-free tea just re-use the tea leaves. Caffeine is very soluble in water so most is released in the first cup and so subsequent cups will be virtually caffeine-free.
Making Green Tea
Green tea should be made with water far cooler than boiling, about 70-80 oC. Good green tea is expensive to buy but you can – and should, it’s wasteful not to – pour more water on the leaves and make several cups after the first one. Click here for green tea suitable for the Budwig diet.