Japanese Green Tea - Health Benefits
Japanese Green tea is known as a drink which has many benefits for your health. Dr. Oguni, Department of Food and Nutritional Sciences in University of Shizuoka, Hamamatsu College, Japan discusses the healthy benefits of green tea in his site, Green Tea and Human Health.
- Preventing food poisoning
Catechin, the bitter ingredients of green tea in green tea effectively kills bacteria which causes food poisoning and also kills the toxins produced by those bacteria.
- Reducing the risk of cancer
Catechin is said to be effective to reduce the growth of cancer.
- Practicing good oral hygiene
Catechin suppresses the formation of plaque by cariogenic bacteria and also kills the bacteria themselves. It also kills other bacteria that cause bad breath. Green tea contains natural fluorine which helps prevent cavities.
- Preventing the increase of cholesterol
Catechin prevents the excessive buildup of blood cholesterol.
- Controlling high blood pressure
Catechin suppresses production of angiotensin II which leads to high blood pressure.
- Lowering blood sugar
Catechin and polysaccharides are effective in lowering blood sugar.
- Slowing the aging process
Consuming agents that are effective antioxidants will slow the aging process. Green tea is rich in vitamin E, which works as antioxidant. Also, catechin in green tea is a very strong antioxidant.
Japanese people like to drink green tea after meals. Why don't you start having a cup of green tea after your meal?
Kinds of Green Tea
Japanese tea is called Ocha and is referred to Green tea. Green tea is one of the most popular beverages in Japan. Green tea harvest starts around May 1 every year in Japan. Green tea farms are filled with bright green tea leaves. Shizuoka prefecture produces most of the green tea in Japan. You can see many green tea farms around the area.
Tea leaves are steamed, dried, rolled, and blended at tea processing factory. There are many varieties of green tea. Gyokuro is the most superior green tea which has sweet flavor. As it is raised, it is protected from direct sunlight. Sencha is the most common green tea. It is raised without cover for the sun. Matcha is made by grounding steamed dried tea leaves into powder with a stone mortar. It is used for tea ceremonies. Houjicha is made by roasting the leaves. It contains little caffeine or tannin. Bancha is rough tea. It is made from lower grade tea leaves and is inexpensive.
How to Prepare Green Tea
When brewing green tea, we put tea leaves in a teapot called Kyusu and pour hot water in it. Then, tea is served in an individual cup called Yunomi which has no handles. If you are visiting someone's house or business in Japan, you will probably be offered a cup of green tea. Also, Japanese restaurants serve green tea free of charge. When you drink Japanese tea, hold the yunomi cup with one hand and put the other hand at the bottom of the cup. Please remember that green tea is drunk hot and without sugar or cream.