Oolong tea is a variety of tea that is a produced through a process of withering the tea plant under strong sun and oxidation before curling and twisting. Oolong tea is a traditional Chinese tea and can be easily found across China in tea houses, tea shops and at households. In South China and among Chinese expatriates in Southeast Asia, oolong tea is very popular. The fine quality oolong tea is produced using tea plant cultivars which are exclusively used for producing particular varieties of oolong tea. Depending on the variety of the oolong tea and the production style, there are different degrees of oxidation which the tea leaves undergo and this can range from 8 to 85%. This results in different styles of oolong tea which vary widely in flavour. Some varieties and styles of oolong tea can be sweet and fruity with honey aromas while some varieties and styles can be woody and thick with roasted aromas, and still, other variations and styles can be green and fresh with complex aromas.
These differences are due to the differences in the horticulture methods used as well as the style of production. The oolong tea varieties which are produced in the Wuyi Mountains of northern Fujian are quite famous Chinese teas. Although the differences in the production styles lead to there being different varieties of oolong tea, the tea leaves are only mostly formed into two distinct styles. In some styles, the oolong tea leaves are rolled into long and curly leaves and in some styles, the oolong tea leaves are wrap-curled into small beads where each bead has a tail.
Oolong tea is produced from the leaves of a tea plant called Camellia sinensis which is a small shrub. The leaves and in some cases, even the young buds of the same tea plant Camellia sinensis are used to produce other varieties of tea which are known as white tea, green tea and black tea. So all these four varieties of tea are close cousins since they are produced from the leaves as well as in some cases the young buds of the same plant. So therefore, just as we know that tea is good for the health of our body, skin and hair; oolong tea which is one of the varieties of tea is no exception. Oolong tea is also very beneficial for our health, skin and hair. Let us find out the amazing oolong tea benefits for your health, skin and hair.
Oolong Tea Benefits for your health, skin and hair
• Oolong tea can help in fighting obesity as well as aid in weight loss – The polyphenols found in oolong tea can help in maintaining a good rate of metabolism which aids in weight loss process. These polyphenols can also in reducing the visceral fat thereby aiding in fighting against obesity. The catechins and the caffeine present in oolong tea have also been indicated to work together to maintain a lean body mass.
• Can help lower the risk of cancer – Some studies indicate that oolong tea can aid in reducing the risk of ovarian cancer amongst women as well as it can help to prevent skin cancer as well as gallbladder cancer. While conclusive results are still to be found, these are good indicators to include a cup of oolong tea in your diet.
• Can help reduce the risk associated with heart diseases – In some studies it was indicated that people who drank at least 10 ounces of oolong tea per week has a lower risk of high cholesterol while the people who had been consuming oolong tea for a very long period of time were found to have lower levels of cholesterol. Another study indicated that a regular intake of oolong tea may help in reducing the risk of death due to cardiovascular diseases. Oolong tea contains caffeine and antioxidants which may be the reason for its contribution in improving the heart health.
• May help prevent diabetes – Studies suggest that oolong tea can help reduce as well as prevent type 2 diabetes as it helps in stabilising the blood sugar levels. Oolong tea contains polyphenols which may help in improving the insulin activity in the body.
• Helps boost brain health – Several studies indicate that oolong tea may help improve the brain health by boosting brain function. The caffeine present in oolong tea triggers the release of norepinephrine and dopamine which aid in improving mood as well as helps in lowering stress. The amino acid L-theanine is also known to boost attention as well as relieve anxiety, while the tea polyphenols have a calming effect on the mind. So now you know why so many people are addicted to their cups of tea!
• Helps in improving the bone health as well as improves oral health – Studies indicate that oolong tea can help in maintaining a high bone mineral density levels. Oolong tea can also help improve the oral health as a regular consumption of oolong tea has been found to reduce the formation of dental plaque. Also, tea in general is known to help in reducing bad breath caused due to decay in teeth and plaque.
• Oolong tea fights against inflammation – Oolong tea has anti-inflammatory properties which helps in conditions such as arthritis. The epigallocatechin gallate or ECGC present in oolong tea fights the harmful free radicals which cause inflammation and helps in the prevention of inflammation related diseases like clogged arteries and cancer.
• Oolong tea may help in improving the health of your skin – Some studies indicate that the anti-allergenic antioxidants present in oolong tea can help in relieving skin conditions such as eczema. Oolong tea also contains powerful anti-oxidants which fight against the harmful free oxygen radicals which are responsible for early signs of ageing such as expression lines and wrinkles. The antioxidants present in oolong tea may also help to treat common skin problems such as acne, pimples and blemishes. A topical application of oolong tea on the skin can also help in such conditions.
• Helps in promoting hair health – Some people believe that a regular intake of oolong tea can help in preventing hair fall as well as improve the overall health of hair and scalp. A topical application of cold oolong tea such as a hair rinse can also help in improving the shine and lustre of your mane.
Thus with so many wonderful oolong tea benefits for your health, skin and hair you must try and include this to your diet to see the results for yourself.