Thursday, 9 January 2014

Lung Chin Tea Health Benefits

First of all, many of you may not have come across Lung Chin tea. You may recognise it as Long Jin or Dragon's well (or variations on the names). The naming of Chinese tea in English is difficult. Often, where there is no really translatable name, a phonetic name is used. In this case the closest English can get is to try to represent how this tea variety is said. Lung chin, Long Jin, say those out aloud and the do indeed sound similar.

Dragon's well is a direct translation of one of the Chinese names for this tea.

An authentic Lung Chin comes only from the Zhejiang province in eastern China. The province is coastal. There are various legends about the Dragon's Well name origin. One of these suggests that there is a well in the region that was widely known to the inhabitants. The water in the well is denser than normal water. When it rains and the rainwater enters the well, where the two waters meet, they slowly mix and the striations in the region of mixing create the appearance of a moving dragon. You can see the effect for yourself if you carefully add tap water to brine. 

Another legend says that during a drought, the inhabitants prayed to a dragon for rain. When the dragon eventually sent the rain that re-filled their wells, they re-named their village Dragon's Well. The tea they produced and sold was duly given the same name!

As with all true teas, Lung Chin tea is made from the dried leaves of Camellia Sinensis, the tea bush. The particular variety used for Lung Chin grows in a wet and mild climate, such as that found between 1500 and 4500 feet in the mountains of the Zhejiang province.

This is the reason for the health benefits.  All varieties of tea contain anti-oxidants to varying degrees. Teas in which the enzymes that destroy the latter chemicals are deactivated soon after picking have the highest levels. Lung Chin is a green tea. Green teas are gently roasted early in their production. Heat deactivates the enzymes that oxidise the anti-oxidants such as EPCG thus preserving the potential benefits. Lung Chin is also rich in Vitamin C, the vitamin known to be extremely helpful to your body as it helps to keep your immunity to infections high.

The Chinese have known about the beneficial effects of Lung Chin for centuries. Pharmacies prescribe it in a variety of situations such as as a stimulant, diuretic and as an aid to digestion.

Treat yourself to this healthy tea ...

Sunday, 3 November 2013

Yet more evidence that green tea can help maintain your health?

Part of the University of Mauritius, the Centre for Excellence for Biomedical and Biomaterials Research, have carried out a small scale study of the effects of drinking green tea on diabetes. It was carried out on a total of 155 subjects, 77 of who were in a pre-diabetic state. So what is a pre-diabetic state? It is also known as prediabetes and can be followed by the development of type 2 diabetes. Despite the name, diabetes does not always follow. It is difficult to know if you are pre-diabetic as the symptoms are unclear but if you are predisposed to diabetes, you should be checked out by your doctor. Essentially, it shows up a higher than normal level of glucose in your bloodstream. It is not necessary to treat prediabetes using drugs, taking more exercise and shedding some weight often solves the problem.

OK, back to the University of Mauritius study. The pre-diabetic stage subjects were asked to drink 3 cups of green tea each day before eating. No details are given about the type, size of cup or exact preparation method for the green tea thus it is possible that the control of this research was not exact. The other group of 78 subjects drank only hot water before their meals. The study does not state what other controls were in place for the food each group ate or quantities, times and other beverages allowed during the study.

Subsequent testing of the two groups using a variety of immune system bio-markers was claimed to have "green tea reinforced the antioxidant defences of those who had reached the pre-diabetic stage" to quote the team leader.

Make up your own mind as to how valid this study is. At least it was carried out on people rather than mice or in-vitrio cell samples. Even if you don't drink green tea for health reasons, it is an enjoyable drink! In Nature Tea -

Wednesday, 14 August 2013

Teas for Summer

In traditional Chinese medicine, green tea is regarded as a cooling agent because it is least oxidised. It is used in traditional remedies for illnesses that are characterised by having a high body temperature. During hot weather, it is said to have the same effect i.e. if you drink green tea, you will feel cooler.

Link: buy green tea online

I have tried it but I will be honest and say that I didn't find it helped much, but then again, I am one of those people whi is completely unaffected by caffeine or herbal remedies (although I did find a clove helped with a toothache I had a couple of years ago!). Whether it works on an individual or not, it is still a nice drink to have in the summer. Make a large pot of green tea and place it into a bottle or big jug when it has cooled sufficiently. Then stick it in the fridge and once it has cooled to fridge temperatures, it makes a refreshing and healthy change to whatever it might be that you normally drink in hot weather.

This works well with Puerh tea too.

Tuesday, 13 August 2013

Green Tea and Child Cancer

It is always interesting to see the claims made by researchers into the benefits of drinking green tea. After all, the Chinese have been saying that it is good for your health for thousands of years. Most of the tests though are carried out on cell smaples that are outside of the body or on other animals so they are certainly in their infancy. Others, tried on humans, are so difficult to control that they are empirical at best. At worst, they are completely subjective.

However, with test after test coming up with green tea versus this, green tea versus that and so on, surely there has to be something in it. A recent study in Australia has found that a modified catechin (catechin is one of the antioxidants found in green tea) from green tea extract has been shown to kill 50% of the cells from neuroblastoma cancers, a particularly nasty cancer that strikes at infants. The problem is that the unmodified catechin is unstable in the human body and that limits its practical effectiveness. A modified version that is more stable is the one found to kill the cancer cells; cells that are normally highly resistant to chemotherapy. The research team have been awarded a further research grant to take the study further.

Tuesday, 30 April 2013

Puerh Tea

Pu-erh, the great "connoisseur Tea". The Queen of all Teas, known for its noble palate, taste and aroma. Also famous for its numerous health properties. Hand picked in the high mountains of Yunnan.
This naturally grown tea is a delicacy which is produced and delivered by Mother Nature without any human interference. It is pretty much the purest form of tea one can drink. The sweet taste and aroma are a feast and its endless health properties makes it a very special treat for the body, mind and spirit.

This tea brews to a reddish-brown colour and has a distinctive liquorice, soothing taste.

 Look out for the White Moon, also known as Yue Bai Guan, is an exceptional blend, as it has very soothing and aromatic properties, while offering an endless amount of health properties. Or for the true connoisseur, 10 years old Puerh is perhaps the ultimate tea.

Thursday, 25 April 2013

A Life of Tea Growing ...

Ai Lin, since the age of 5 has been living and breathing the Green Teas which her family has cultivated in the hills of Zheijian Province. Since her infant days she knows that life begins at sunset, and ends at sundown; no school or going anywhere but being close to the tea trees every single day of her life for the past six decades. There is no week end, or a break, except the ones offered by mother nature, like a rain storm or the chill of the winter. 

She feels blessed and extremely proud to be part of this natural process that has its roots deep in Chinese culture. She and her family have this ancient connection with each and every tea leaf which is hand picked from the green hills of her home town. It's hard to believe but yes, it is still hand picked one leaf at a time; one by one. She knows for a fact that her father and mother, her grand parents worked the same land, the same way, with the same harvest, the Long Jin Green Tea.

She believes that her teas are not just a drink but a true legacy to her land that can make us feel closer to nature and with each other; therefore happier people. In her own words: We can all share with others something which is pure and really good. She and her family understands that every year they have this commitment and duty to provide China and now the world with this awaited harvest,that she feels so much part of it and enjoyed by millions for centuries.

We are extremely grateful to Ai Lin, to her family and ancestors that have kept the integrity and purity of this magnificent tea and tradition. Despite all the modern reality and technology, life at Shi Hu has not changed much for thousand of years. Ai Lin is a living testament of how what is pure and real may last an eternity. We are indeed so privileged to share this legacy that we hope, will remain as it is for many generations to come.
Thank you, Ai Lin.