Added/Modified on November 22, 2013
Also Known As: Camellia sinensis, qīngchá, Oolong may be preceded by brand or region processed, i.e. Taiwan Oolong or Wu-Long.
All Oolong Teas are made from the Camellia sinensis plant. Whether the Oolong tea is labeled as green, white, oolong, or black tea depends on how it is processed.
The type of processing will vary the amounts of antioxidants and other chemicals in the tea; for the most part the difference is negligible.
Generally Oolong tea leaves are processed in two ways. The oldest method is to roll the harvested tea into long curly leaves.
The second method is to press the tea leaves into a ball-like form, similar to gunpowder tea.
No mater which way the leaves are processed, it must be done as soon as the leaves are harvested. The leaves are put in the sun to wilt for a short time, then placed in baskets and shaken to bruise the leaves.
This allows the juices in the leaves to be exposed to the air, beginning the process of oxidation. Oolong teas can be oxidized from between 10% to 70%.
Now the leaves are spread out to dry. If dried less than two hours, the tea is a Chinese Oolong; the drying time is longer for Taiwanese Oolongs.
In traditional Chinese tea culture, oolong teas that are semi-oxidized are called qīngchá, which literally means “blue-green tea.”
Now the tea is fired in order to stop the fermentation or oxidation process. Traditionally this means that the tea is placed in hot woks and cooked quickly.
This process may be repeated several times: fermenting the leaves, then firing, until there are crisp, dry leaves of the variety, oxidation level, and process for a specific brand.
Oolong tea tastes more like green tea than it does black. It is traditionally brewed strong, so the bitterness leaves a sweet aftertaste.
What is Oolong Tea? Oolong tea is made from the leaves of the Camellia sinensis bush. The tea is commercially available in tea bags, loose bulk leaves, or in liquid extract form.
Oolong Tea Preparation: ◦2 tsp Oolong tea per cup
◦Water at 180 to 190 degrees Fahrenheit
Steep 3–4 minutes. With high quality Oolong it is common to brew the same leaves three to five times, the third or fourth steeping usually providing the best cup of tea.
Home Remedies Using Oolong Tea:
Oolong tea has been used throughout history to promote good health, healing, and to prevent illness.
Oolong Tea is known to contain all of the antioxidants including catechins, thearubigin and theaflavin which will help fight free radicals. It is used for weight loss because in increases the metabolism, blocks dietary fat absorption, and burns fat.
Oolong Tea is good for the heart, used as a treatment for diabetes, and inhibits bacteria. This tea prevents tooth decay, and enhances enzyme function which helps dissolve triglycerides. Oolong Tea is used to reduce blood pressure, preventing hypertension.
Clinical research has shown that, “Oolong tea lowered the risk of death from cardiovascular disease. Approximately 1,000 participants, age 40 to 79 years, were studied; of those who drank one to six cups of oolong tea per week, the risk reduction for cardiovascular disease was 38 percent among men and 22 percent among women.”
Side Effects of Oolong Tea:
Generally considered safe, Oolong tea may produce negative side effects from gross over consumption.
The side effects from over consumption would be related to the caffeine causing dizziness, irritability, or sleeplessness.
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