Adverse effects of Wu-Long Tea

Wu-Long Tea – Caffeine

All Teas naturally contain “caffeine” so if caffiene intake is an issue you may want to know how drinking Wu-long tea can effect you regarding caffeine consumption.

Wu-Long tea typically has about half the caffeine content of the same amount of coffee.

The following is the approximate caffeine content of various beverages:

Beverage Milligrams of Caffeine
AVG per serving Per OZ.
Coffee 5 oz. cup 80 13.00
Cola (12 oz. can) 45 3.75
Black Tea 40 5.00
Wu-Long Tea 30 3.75
Green Tea 20 2.5
White Tea 15 2.00
Decaf Tea 2 .50
Herbal Tea 0 0.00

Summary – Tea and Adverse effects regarding Caffeine

During the past decade, extensive research on caffeine in relation to cardiovascular disease, fibrocystic breast disease, reproductive function, behavior in children, birth defects, and cancer has identified no significant health hazard from normal caffeine consumption.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has conducted research and reviewed the extensive scientific literature on caffeine. In a Federal Register notice published in May 1987, the FDA stated that the agency had reviewed ” studies on teratology, reproduction behavior, carcinogenicity, and cardiovascular disease…but found no evidence to show that the use of caffeine in carbonated beverages would render theses beverages injurious to health.” The American Medical Association has examined the research on caffeine and came to a similarly confident position on its safety. A 1984 report from AMA Council on Scientific Affairs stated, ” Moderate tea or coffee drinkers probably need to have no concern for their health relative to their caffeine consumption provided other lifestyle habits (diet, alcohol consumption) are moderate, as well.”
 (Ref.: International Food Information Council)

Other Health Concerns Regarding Tea Consumption

If you have Hyperthyroidism – Graves Disease – consult your physician before consuming any food or drink that may aggrevate this condition. This includes all teas .

In general, people should consult their physician prior to consuming tea if they suffer from these conditions:

  • stomach ulcers
  • heart problems
  • hyperthyroidism
  • psychological disorders

Pregnant women should also avoid tea and/or consult their physician prior to consuming tea or tea products

Green tea should also be avoided if one is taking any of the following medications:

  • anti-biotics
  • Benzodiazepines
  • Beta blockers
  • blood thinning medicines
  • chemotherapy
  • oral contraceptives
  • lithium

Tea and Thyroid Conditions

We cannot provide specific medical advice regarding your specific condition as it relates to tea or any tea related product as we are not physicians however we can recommend some online sources that deal specifically with thyroid conditions: related to tea consumption:
www.ithyroid.com
thyroid.about.com

Benefits of Wu-Long Tea

Next to water, tea is the most consumed beverage in the world. For centuries people have been enjoying the taste and health benefits (knowingly or unknowingly) of wu-long and other teas, maybe you have too!

Majority rules! the health benefits simply cannot be ignored. Due to its overwhelming popularity, serious research has been conducted in the last 30 years regarding the many health claims of wu-long tea, mainly as a weight loss aid and antioxidant. Many links to technical abstracts supporting health claims have been included so if enjoy reading” technical or medical” journals you can find many in this website.

Wu-Long Tea Burns Calories

If your looking for a way to shed some pounds drinking Wu-Long tea may be just what your looking for!

Here is one study that validates the powerful calorie burning effect of Wu-Long tea…

Based on a study in Japan, the metabolism of Japaneese women that consumed Wu-Long tea increased twice as much as those that drank the traditional green tea. That is.. twice as many calories were burned by the Wu-Long tea drinkers.

Wu-Long Tea Blocks Fattening Carbs

Researchers in Japan discovered that drinking Wu-long tea before consuming carbs (15 minutes before) reduces the effect of the insulin boost usually associated when carbs are eaten. This means the carbs that are usually stored and converted to fat are blocked. You can eat cake, pasta, bread etc without gaining the weight associated with carb intake.

Wu-Long Tea Promotes Great Skin

In a new study published in the academic journal Archives of Dermatology, researchers from Japan’s Shiga University of Medical Science found that drinking Wu-Long daily had a dramatic skin clearing effect, within about 4 weeks of regular consumption.

Wu-Long Tea Reverses Signs of Aging

As we age the effect of stress, pollution, processed food additives etc.. take its toll on your body by creating free radicals. These free radicals are responsible for producing many of the visible signs associated with aging such as dark spots and wrinkling of the skin. Drinking Wu long has been proven to reduce and destroy 1/2 the amount of free radicals in the body thus may help reduce the visible signs associated with aging.

Wu-long Tea Promotes Strong, Healthy Teeth

A study from the Dept of Dentistry at Japan’s Osaka University concluded that routine and regular consumption of Wu-Long tea reduced the effect of plaque deposit thus preventing tooth decay. This is due to the anti-bacterial effect against oral streptococci.

Strengthens Your Immune System

Drinking Wu-Long tea can bolster the immune system as suggested by recent studies, probably due to the strong antioxidant properties inherent in all teas.

What Is Wu-Long Tea ?

All tea comes from the same species of plant Camellia Sinensis. It is in the fermentation process that produces the many wonderfully different tasting and fragrant teas.

” Wu-long tea has gained much popularity lately because of the many health benefits…”

Wu-Long ( ..or oolong, wulong… don’t get hung up on the two names they are EXACTLY the same tea!) is a partially fermented tea which is processed between the black and green tea families. The tea leaves are dried in sunlight and allowed to partially oxidize (20-80%) until leaf edges reddens. This gives oolong a a bit more body than Green tea but slightly less body than Black tea.

Wu-Long is grown in China, specifically, in the southern regions of China like Taiwan, Guangdong and Fujian. One of the most famous tea regions in Fujian is Anxi.

Demand for Wu-long tea has skyrocketed since 2003 when many of these studies were made public. People from all around the world who had never been aware of these amazing health benefits have been enjoying this refreshing and fragrant tea.

Wu-long tea possesses the best qualities of both black and green teas. It has the refreshing qualities of green teas while also has the fragrance of black teas. People are discovering that besides increasing your body energy, promoting metabolism and controlling obesity, Wu-long tea is tasty and never ceases to lose its appeal no matter how often you drink it.

Tea Tasting 101 – What Does Wu Long Taste Like?

Wu long (oolong) teas have been described as “flowery”, “smooth”, “spicy”, “sweet and creamy”, “subtle orchid tastes”, “full tasting with a mellow aftertaste”…

Hmmm…makes you want to try some Wu long tea yourself! These terms are a good guideline for judging wu long (oolong)tea tastes; you’ll see these terms a lot if you experiment with different tea varieties.

I’m sure once you’ve tasted Wu long (oolong) tea brewed correctly, you might find these terms very fitting .

“…With all the talk about the health benefits of tea drinking we can easily forget about one of the best reasons to we drink tea – the complex and amazing taste!”

Remember, tea processing is an art not a science, which is why the taste and the subtle nuance in flavor and aroma in each batch varies ever so slightly.

Why is this? Wu long teas vary in taste mainly because of the firing process.

The longer fired Wu long teas are considerd more “bakey”. Short fired are more “peachlike” or “fruity”.

Over-firing tends to create an undesirable tasting tea; a baked taste, destroying the complex mellow beauty of a good oolong tea

Not to be confused with “High-fired” which is similar to “over fired” or “dried”, but not bakey or burned. An indication of good flavor.

For a good example of a fantastic tasting – high fired Taiwanese Wu Long, my first impression was that it had “bakey notes”, but not a burnt flavor. It’s since become one of my favorites, always complex and full bodied.

One thing to remember is that these taste terms describe the flavor range and are not absolutely good or bad. For example “bakey” is usually a negative term meaning burnt because of over firing during processing. However a slightly baked taste from just the right amount of firing is extremely pleasant to the taste!

This is where choosing an experienced tea vendor online with knowledge and plenty of experience is critical! One of the best online tea vendors Generation Tea.

They know how critical it is to evaluate teas on a batch by batch basis. They do a great job! They have always delivered the highest quality wu long teas.

What Influences Tea Taste

Tea taste is influenced by many factors: The time of year it’s picked, which leaves are picked, the processing, the actual growing region, and the knwledge of the vendor. These are all major influences in the final taste of whichever tea you enjoy whether Wu-long, green, Pu-erh etc…

The good news is there are such a wide variety of amazing tasting teas to be discovered that understanding what words are used to describe the taste is a big help in choosing a tea.

Let’s talk about descriptive terms related to all types of teas

Remember, this is subjective and varies from person to person!

Here are some basic tea taste concepts:

  • Aroma: The odor of the tea as it steams from your cup. The more complex the better, often called a “bouquet”.
  • Astringency: the polyphenols in tea (the healthy antioxidants) create a “puckery” sensation usually on the side of the tongue.
  • Body: The sensation of weight experienced in the mouth. Usually, thin, medium, full.
  • Full: Describes liquor possessing color, strength, substance and roundness, as opposed to empty.
  • Thick: Describes liquor having substance, but not necessarily strength.
  • Thin/weak: Describes tea liquor lacking thickness and strength.
  • Toasty – describes the liquor of the brewed tea. Usually this term is used when the tea is “over fired” during the manufacturing process. (Can be bad but not always).

Terms Descriptive of Poor Taste – All Teas

Bakey: Usually occurs when a tea is subjected to higher than normal temperatures during the baking process. Typically unpleasant to the taste.

Cheesy: An undesirable character suggestive of slightly rancid butter, generally attributed to insufficiently seasoned or inferior chest battens.

Common: Inferior teas with little or no distingushing character. Plain. Grocery store teas fall into this catagory. Better worse than plain!

Earthy: Can also be described as moldy, musty, dank etc… Typically occurs when teas are stored under poor conditions.

Empty: When the tea liquor lacks body and substance, this term is appropriate.

Woody: Tea taster’s term indicating an undesirable grassy characteristic.

Terms Descriptive of Good Taste – All Teas.

Biscuity: Tea taster’s expression, often used with Assam teas that have been fired well but not overly so. A not unpleasant character reminiscent of biscuits.

Black Currant: An extremely desirable characteristic occasionally noticeable in the liquors and infusions of fine darjeelings, akin to the aroma emitted by black currant bushes.

Cream(y): Round, smooth the precipitate which is apparent when the liquor of a good strong tea cools. It is a combination of catechin with caffeine. This remains a solution in the hot tea infusions. On cooling, this is thrown out of solution and so remains suspended but after long standing settles at the bottom. A bright cream indicates a good tea, whereas a dull or muddy cream is indicative of an inferior tea.

Full: Strong tea without bitterness and possessing good color,

Fruity Flavor nuance found in quality teas such as oolongs and Keemuns. Also describes fruit flavored teas.

Remember the above are subjective taste characteristics that are “agreed on” in the tea drinking community at large.

So ultimately, it’s a matter of degree of flavor elements, which mainly influences the taste of wu long or any tea for that matter. You be judge…and enjoy!

History of Wu Long Tea

Wu long (also Wu-long, or ooLong) is literally ‘black dragon’ tea, but they say the name originally had nothing to do with dragons; rather, it was named after its discoverer Wu Liang.

Wu Liang was out picking tea one day. After collecting a good load his eye was caught by a river deer. He stopped to slay the beast and when he got home he got distracted by the preparation of it, quite forgetting to dry out his precious tea.

By the time he remembered about it a day or so later, the tea had started to change colour – he was worried that it might have gone bad, but he didn’t want to let good tea go to waste so he finished preparing it anyway.

When he got through with firing the tea he made himself a cup and found that he had stumbled on a taste sensation! His surprising new tea was mellow and aromatic, unlike anything he had tasted before.

Once he made the tea for his neighbours they all want to know how to make it, and he was happy to share the technique; before long Wu-Liang’s tea was known throughout the province. Through Chinese Whispers it eventually came to be known as Wu-Long cha, or Black Dragon tea.