Qualities: as a semi-fermented tea, oolong tea integrates the best qualities of both the un-oxidized green tea and the fully oxidized black tea. Some claim it has the richest taste among all teas as it retains the strong fragrance and mellow flavors of black tea as well as as the sweet and fragrant smell of green tea. Oolong tea contains caffeine. Botanical name: Camellia sinensis Certified Organic Country of Origin: China Production: the process to create oolong tea is complicated and each step requires a lot of experience and skill. Fresh tea leaves are left to wither in the sun, then tumbled to bruise the leaves to allow partial oxidation. Finally, the leaves are rolled and heat dried to stop the oxidation process. The manufacture of oolong tea involves repeating these stages to achieve the desired amount of bruising and browning of leaves. Withering, rolling, shaping, and firing are similar to black tea, but much more attention to timing and temperature is necessary. Storage: Store in cool, dark, dry place Health Benefits: 1. Boosts your metabolism, causing weight loss. Oolong tea helps you burn fat faster by raising your metabolism for up to two hours after drinking it. Oolong also contains polyphenols that are able to block enzymes that build fat. This means you can lose weight with oolong tea, so long as you don’t load it with refined sugar and artificial sweeteners. If your tastes lean towards sweet tea, consider using a small amount of raw honey, maple syrup, stevia or agave syrup—all of which are sugars low on the glycemic index. 2. Lowers cholesterol Oolong is known to reduce cholesterol levels and promote heart health. Because oolong tea is semi-oxidized, it produces a perfectly sized polyphenol molecule that is able to activate the enzyme lipase, which is known to dissolve body fat. 3. Increases mental alertness This healing hot cuppa is known to revitalize your mental alertness and performance, naturally, because it contains caffeine. Be careful if you are sensitive to caffeine and limit your consumption to one lightly steeped cup a day, or indulge a few times a week. 4. Aids digestion Oolong can help aid digestion for those not sensitive to caffeine. The tea alkalizes the digestive tract, reducing inflammation in those with acid reflux and ulcer problems. Because it is mildly antiseptic, oolong tea can clear bad bacteria from your belly. Its calm, smooth flavor can soothe the stomach when consumed hot. 5. Promotes healthy hair Due to its high level of antioxidants, oolong tea can prevent hair loss if you make a tea rinse out of the leaves. Not only that, but your hair will be thicker and shinier. Oolong softens and adds lustre to your hair. 6. Betters your skin condition Eczema often occurs in conjunction with allergies or sensitivities. Oolong tea is able to suppress those allergic reactions because it combats free radicals, which is a healing property of an antioxidant. Also, the antioxidants found in oolong are essential for vibrant, youthful skin. Drinking oolong can greatly slow down the aging process, so it’s a great anti-aging tool. 7. Stabilizes blood sugar When you have type 2 diabetes, your blood glucose levels are elevated. Studies have shown that those suffering from diabetes could benefit from drinking oolong which, in studies, has decreased blood glucose to a healthy level. The antioxidants in oolong, which comes from polyphenols, does wonders for metabolizing sugar. 8. Prevents tooth decay Both oolong and green tea protect teeth from acid produced by certain bacteria. The production of acid and the growth of bacteria are both inhibited by oolong tea, which means it is effective in preventing tooth decay and build-up plaque. 9. Prevents osteoporosis and forms strong bones Oolong can protect your bones and prevent osteoporosis. Those who consistently drink oolong tea are less likely to lose their bone mineral density, helping retain minerals from healthy foods consumed. It has been discovered that oolong contains magnesium and calcium in its leaves. 10. Strengthens the immune system Known for its anti-cancer properties, oolong tea assists in maintaining a healthy immune system. The antioxidant flavonoids found in the tea prevent cellular damage. The production of anti-bacterial proteins is much higher in those who drink oolong tea, indicating a strong immune response when fighting infection.