Made from the Camellia sinensis leaves, oolong is made from the same plant as black and green tea. However, the difference is in the processing. Every type of tea leaf contains specific enzymes that lead to oxidation, a chemical reaction, which helps in turning the color of the green leaves into black.
|An Interesting Fact |
Oolong tea only constitutes 2% of the teas in the world, which makes it a niche. However, the subtle blend of green and black tea packed in one makes oolong tea worth discovering.
What is Oolong Tea?
Oolong tea can be found in a wide range, but the most popular one has its roots in the Fujian province of China. Although there are numerous varieties that one can find, the most popular ones can be traced back to the Chinese region and therefore it is considered as a traditional Chinese and Taiwanese tea.
The oolong tea benefits are galore, making it a popular option for tea lovers as well as those looking to lead a healthy life. When consumed regularly, oolong tea provides several health benefits ranging from maintaining a healthy weight, improving skin health, and preventing tooth decay.
[Read: Benefits of Basil Tea]
What is the Nutrition Composition of Oolong Tea?
Just like the green and black teas, oolong tea is also packed with several nutrients and minerals. According to the reference daily intake (RDI), a cup of steeped oolong tea contains an approximate amount of –
|Niacin||1% of the RDI|
|Potassium||1% of the RDI|
|Sodium||1% of the RDI|
|Magnesium||1% of the RDI|
5 to 24% of the RDI
|Manganese||26% of the RDI|
The other antioxidants present in oolong tea that adds to the health benefits are-
- Polyphenols – theaflavins, thearubigins, EGCG
- Amino acid – theanine
10 Amazing Oolong Tea Benefits
There are several oolong tea benefits. Among the several ones, here are 10 striking health benefits of oolong tea.
1. Lowers Cholesterol
Oolong tea helps in lowering cholesterol levels, thereby promoting a healthy heart. Being semi-oxidized, oolong tea(1) produces the right amount of polyphenol molecule activating lipase, an enzyme that helps in dissolving fat in the body.
2. Aids Digestion
Those who are not sensitive to caffeine can benefit a lot from oolong tea. The tea helps in alkalizing the digestive tract, which leads to a reduction of inflammation in the digestive tract of those suffering from ulcers and acid reflux. As the tea also acts as a mild antiseptic, it helps in clearing harmful bacteria in the stomach and soothes the lining of the stomach when consumed hot.
3. Weight Loss
Oolong tea leads to effective weight loss. Once consumed, it raises the metabolism of your body that helps in burning the fat effectively. The polyphenols in the tea block those enzymes that build fat in the body, which leads to weight loss. Make sure that you do not add artificial sweetener or refined sugar to your oolong tea.
On the contrary, stevia, raw honey or maple syrup can be added to your brewed tea as a healthy sweetener option as these contain low levels of the glycemic index.
4. Keeps Your Alert
As this tea contains around 36 mg of caffeine, it helps in keeping your mind alert. However, it is recommended to watch the amount of caffeine you consume. You can follow the consumption of oolong tea to a maximum of one cup a day or a few times across the week.
5. Stabilizes Blood Sugar
Those already facing issues of high blood sugar can benefit from oolong tea as it helps in stabilizing the blood sugar levels to a great extent. Elevated blood sugar levels can be brought down to normal levels by consuming oolong tea with the help of polyphenol antioxidants(2) present in the tea. However, more research is required in this domain to get in-depth evidence on the same.
6. Improves Skin Condition
Sensitivities and allergies are some of the common skin conditions ailments. Drinking oolong tea can help in fighting these allergies as the tea is packed with antioxidants that help In combating free radicals. Moreover, these antioxidants are vital for a rejuvenated, youthful, and vibrant skin. Oolong tea can also act as an anti-aging tool, and regular consumption of this tea can help in slowing the aging process.
[Read: Health Benefits fo Senna Tea]
7. Promoting Healthy, Strong Hair
One of the prominent oolong tea benefits includes its property of promoting healthy hair. It can prevent hair loss, thanks to the antioxidants present in the tea. Rinsing hair with oolong tea leaves can not only help in making hair stronger and healthier but also lustrous, shinier, and thicker.
8. Helps in Forming Strong Bones
Oolong tea is also known to prevent osteoporosis. Due to the nutrients such as calcium and magnesium in oolong tea, it can maintain bone health. Consistent consumption of oolong tea can help in retaining the minerals from foods. It also aids in protecting the loss of bone mineral density to a large extent.
9. Strengthens the Immune System
A healthy immune system can be maintained if oolong tea is consumed as a part of the regular diet. The presence of antioxidant flavonoids in the tea helps in preventing damage of cells. Moreover, those who drink oolong tea are known to have more anti-bacterial proteins as compared to those who do not consume the same. This indicates a robust immune system that helps in fighting infection in the body.
10. Prevents Tooth Decay
Oolong tea, as well as green tea, has the properties of preventing teeth from decaying. Both tooth decay and bacteria growth are suppressed by oolong tea, which means that it prevents plaque build-up.
How to Make Oolong Tea?
Some of the must tried-and-tested DIY recipes of oolong tea are:
Oolong Iced Tea
Things you’ll need:
- 6 tea bags of oolong tea
- 6 cups of water
- ½ tablespoon of freshly squeezed lemon juice
How to prepare?
- Add the tea bags to hot water and let it steep for 5 minutes.
- Remove the tea bags and add lemon juice.
- Cool the tea in the refrigerator for 3 to 4 hours before consuming or serve with ice.
Oolong Peach Tea
Things you’ll need
- 4 tea bags of oolong tea
- 6 cups of water
- 2 ripe peaches, peeled and sliced
How to prepare?
- Add the tea bags to the cup of hot water and let it steep for 5 minutes. Remove the tea bags and refrigerate for 3 to 4 hours.
- Puree the peaches and add it to the tea.
- Serve with ice.
Things to Keep in Mind before Consuming Oolong Tea
Oolong tea has been consumed for ages and is considered to be safe. However, it contains caffeine, which when consumed in excess quantity causes insomnia, anxiety, headache, heart palpitations, and high blood pressure. As mentioned before, Oolong tea contains polyphenol antioxidants and flavonoids that may bind with the iron content in the food and disrupt the functioning of the digestive system.
Moreover, pregnant women are advised to consume only a maximum of 200 grams of caffeine that amounts to a total of 3 to 5 cups of oolong tea per day.
Unlike the popular green, black and red teas, oolong tea does not form a part of the regular diet. However, oolong tea benefits are many – right from boosting the body metabolism to decreasing the risk of type 2 diabetes, oolong tea offers a range of health merits.
A tasty and extremely healthy beverage option, oolong tea should be added to your daily diet, helping it to provide you with a range of benefits. We all are looking for a healthy diet, and oolong tea looks like a great addition, and a must try.