Tea is the second most widely consumed beverage in the world, second only to the most necessary of all liquids - water. It is the most popular beverage for a huge swath of humanity across continents, races and cultures from times immemorial.
Tea is known as nature’s 'wonder drug'. Of late, tea and its healthy benefits have been receiving wide attention in the media. The ability of tea to promote good health has long been believed in many countries, especially Japan, China, India and European countries like England.
Enlightened tea drinkers are rediscovering the protective and revitalizing benefits of this ancient drink. Ever wonder why the Chinese and Japanese have some of the longest life-expectancy rates in the world? Shhh…here’s the secret: they drink a lot of tea.
Tea is prepared from linder leaves, leaf buds and tender stalks of different varieties of the warm-weather evergreen known as camellia sinensis. The most popular types of tea are:
The degree of processing the leaves of camellia sinensis determines whether a tea will be green, black or red (oolong).
Green tea is the least processed. These are simply steamed quickly before packaging.
Black and red tea are partially dried, crushed and fermented. The length of fermentation, which causes the leaves to blacken, determines whether the tea will be red or black.