Oolong tea is being touted for its health benefits, namely its effects in helping with weight loss. But why is oolong tea so good for us? Oolong tea is a semi-fermented tea that falls between green and black tea. It is very high in polyphenols, antioxidants that are great for the body, helping to remove damaging free radicals and reducing triglyceride levels.
How Oolong Tea is Processed
When making oolong tea, it is important that the leaves are processed directly after they have been picked. Firstly, the leaves are wilted in the sun before being packed into baskets and shaken in order to bruise the leaves. Bruising the leaves causes the juices to be exposed to the air, which kick starts the process of oxidation. After this, the leaves are spread out to dry before the tea is fired, which stops the fermentation process. Oolong tea is traditionally fired in hot woks. Often, oolong tea is scented with jasmine flowers.
How Oolong Tea Helps with Weight Loss
Obesity, or excessive weight, occurs when sugars and fats are turned into triglycerides in the liver and the small intestine. These triglycerides are then transported through the bloodstream into other areas of the body. The majority of the fat in the body is in the form of triglycerides, and it is used as a source of energy to sustain life and also physical activity. If there are too many triglycerides, they will be deposited into fat cells. Therefore, if there are too many triglycerides, obesity will occur. Drinking oolong tea helps with the metabolising of fat, thus helping to control obesity and promote weight loss. Oolong tea activates the enzyme in the body that is responsible for dissolving triglycerides, so it stands to reason that regular consumption of oolong can be helpful in weight management by enhancing the function of fat metabolism.
Other Health Benefits of Oolong
Besides helping with weight management, oolong is also helpful for the following:
- removing free radicals from the body
- preventing skin damage such as pigmentation, liver spots, and wrinkles
- slows down the aging process by removing the free radicals that turn skin lipids into lipid peroxide
- improves symptoms that are associated with weak kidney and spleen energy
- the polyphenols helps to reduce and prevent tooth decay