Oolong tea is a mixture of green tea and black tea. The characteristics of oolong tea are more similar to those of green tea. Some people refer to oolong tea as brown tea and even wu long tea. This herbal tea is derived from camellia sinensis tea plant. The leaves of this herbal plant are more processed than that of green tea and far less oxidised than that of black tea. This simply implies that the herbal plant is semi fermented to get oolong tea. Oolong tea originated in China, however, the finest oolong tea is obtained from Taiwan.
The wonderful health benefits of oolong tea:
Oolong tea has many health benefits. The world consumption of oolong tea is only 2 percent of all teas. This low number shows that very few people are aware of the benefits of oolong tea. Many studies are conducted all across the world on the benefits of oolong tea. Here we list some of them.
1. Rich in antioxidents
Free radicals negatively effect the body causing early ageing, skin problems, wrinkles, cancer, Alzheimer’s disease, dark spots, arthritis and many other problems. The antioxidants present in oolong tea shield us against the harmful effects of free radicals. This herbal tea acts before the free radicals can start working against the body.
In 2003 Kenichi Yanagimoto conducted a study on green tea, oolong tea and black tea for their antioxidant action. The study proved that green tea has most powerful antioxidants, followed closely by oolong tea and the black tea.
- Green tea successfully blocked oxidation by almost 100% over 40 days.
- Oolong tea was able to block oxidation by 50% over just 15 days.
- Black tea showed mild antioxidant activities.
2. Makes the heart healthy:
Several studies have been conducted to determine the health benefits of oolong tea.
An American study conducted in 2007 concluded that oolong herbal tea helps reduce blood concentrations of triglycerides by eighty percent in rats.
In 2001 a Japanese study concluded that oolong tea helps lower cholesterol level after consuming it regularly for one month.
Another study conducted in 2004 by the Japanese Osaka City University concluded that oolong herbal tea helps in increasing plasma adiponectin levels. Low plasma adiponectin levels are linked with several serious ailments like obesity, type 2 diabetes as well as coronary heart ailments.
3. Reduces High Blood Pressure:
A study conducted by Yang in 2004 concluded that regular consumption of oolong tea and green tea for a year or more helps reduce blood pressure.
People who drink one to two cups of oolong tea are 46% less likely to get high blood pressure.
4. Heals skin problems:
A study conducted in 2001 by Uehara of the Shiga University concluded that oolong tea has anti allergic effect. The study found that oolong herbal tea can help cure recalcitrant type atopic dermatitis, a skin problem.
5. Stops tooth decay:
A study conducted in 1993 by Nakahara discovered that oolong tea slows down the enzyme action of bacteria streptococci. Bacteria streptococci cause dental plaque which can lead to dental caries. Thus by suppressing the activity of this bacteria, oolong herbal tea prevents tooth decay. Department of Dentistry at Osaka University also reported that oolong tea strengthens tooth enamel.
6. Weight loss
Several studies on oolong tea have concluded that this tea helps increase metabolism rate thus aids weight loss.