Tuesday, January 6, 2009

January is National Hot Tea Month!

Did you know that January is National Hot Tea Month? No? Neither did I, until recently. So I thought it would be a good time to read the tea leaves, so to speak, and see why tea is worthy of such a designation.

All tea comes from the Camellia sinensis plant, a warm-weather evergreen. How the fresh leaves of the tea plant are processed and their level of contact with oxygen determine what type of tea you are left with. Green tea is not oxidized at all—the leaves are steamed, rolled and dried. Black tea is allowed to oxidize for two to four hours. Oolong tea falls somewhere between green and black teas, with the leaves being only partially oxidized. Theanine, an ingredient found naturally in tea, has been shown to boost the immune system. A cup of tea contains an average of 20-25 mg. of theanine, helping your body fight off infection-a good idea in cold and flu season! Contrary to popular belief, herbal teas do not derive from Camellia sinensis, but instead are an infusion of leaves, roots, bark, seeds or flowers of other plants. They lack many of the unique characteristics of tea and are not linked with the research on the potential health benefits of traditional teas.

Drinking tea needn't be a boring routine. At Bloomers, you'll find "Blooming Tea", a small bundle of tea leaves bound together which, once steeped, unfurls into a beautiful bloom in your clear teapot. (We have those, too!). If you are a solitary tea drinker, consider the pretty Tea-for-One, an ingenious little teapot that rests on it's own teacup. Both of these help make staying healthy a little easier!To Your Health!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Perfect time of year for blogging about tea!

"There are few hours in life more agreeable than the hour dedicated to the ceremony known as afternoon tea." ~Henry James, The Portrait of a Lady