Green tea is a product made from the Camellia sinensis plant. Black tea is also made from this plant, but unlike green tea, black tea is made from leaves that have been fermented. Fermentation may reduce the levels of some compounds, such as antioxidants, in the tea. It can be prepared as a beverage, which can have some health effects. Or an “extract” can be made from the leaves to use as medicine. Green tea is made from un-oxidized leaves and is one of the less processed types of tea and therefore contains one of the most antioxidants and beneficial polyphenols. Green tea contains chemicals known as polyphenols, which have antioxidant properties. The major group of polyphenols in green tea are called catechins, and the most important catechin seems to be epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG).
Green tea is widely consumed in Japan, China, and other Asian nations and is becoming more popular in Western nations. The Chinese have been drinking green tea for at least 3,000 years, and it has been popular in some other Asian countries for at least 1,000 years.
The leaves are supposedly richer in antioxidants than other types of tea because of the way they are processed.
Green tea contains B vitamins, folate (naturally occurring folic acid), manganese, potassium, magnesium, caffeine and other antioxidants, notably catechins.
Green tea is alleged to boost weight loss, reduce cholesterol, combat cardiovascular disease, and prevent cancer and Alzheimer’s disease.
Different Types of Green Tea
There are different varieties of green tea, each with its own method of harvesting and processing.