Botanical Name: Camellia sinensis
- English: Tea
- Unani: Chaai, Shaahi, Shaayi
- Also, known as: Tee, cha, Te, Thé, Chay, Tè, Da, Chai, Sa, The, Chay, Chah, Thaeyilai, Cha-keay
Habitat: Native to Western China
Parts Used: Leaves
Camellia sinensis, it is an evergreen plant and medium sized woody shrubs. Chinese tea is a much-branched shrub of about 3 to 4 meters high with relatively small to medium leaves. Leaves are oval and pointed at the tip; usually 5-10 cm long, shiny, dark green above. Tea has been cultivated for centuries, beginning in India and China. Today, tea is the most widely-consumed beverage in the world, second only to water. It is believed to have originated somewhere in Southeast Asia and western China. Since recorded history, camellia has been taken as a tea in China. It is being cultivated since so many years now. It is still uncertain that what is exact origin pointed for the tea leaves. There are 3 main varieties of tea, green, black, and oolong. The difference is in how the teas are processed. Green tea is made from unfermented leaves and reportedly contains the highest concentration of powerful antioxidants. All the different kinds of tea, including Green, Black, White, Oolong, and Pu-Erh, come from the same plant which is Camellia sinensis. Considering the difference in flavor and fragrance between black and green tea, the fact that these beverages come from the same plant is amazing!
People in Asian countries more commonly consume green and oolong tea while black tea is most popular in the United States. If we talk about other types of tea like white tea, that comes from the new buds that are steamed or dried. On the other hand, Green tea leaves are steamed and dried. Black tea leaves are rolled, fermented, and dried. The oolong tea leaves are partially fermented and dried. These all types of the teas are depending upon how they are fermented. The more the leaves are fermented, the lower the polyphenol content and the higher the caffeine content. Green tea has the highest polyphenol content while black tea has roughly 2 to 3 times the caffeine content of green tea.
How to use:
The basic method for dried herbs and flower is, take 2-3 tablespoons of dried herb in a cup or teapot. Pour hot water over it and cover it with lid for 10-30 minutes. Hot water is needed to draw out the antioxidants, enzymes, vitamins, flavonoids, and volatile oils from the botanicals. Strain and squeeze out as much as liquid as possible and enjoy!
- You can sweeten your herbal tea with a bit of honey, natural fruit juice, stevia leaves powder and or licorice root powder.
- You can make ice cubes or pops by freezing tea in ice trays or pop molds.
You should consult with a qualified healthcare practitioner before using any herbal products, particularly if you are pregnant, nursing, or on any medications.
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This information has not been evaluated by Health Canada.
This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.