Tea originates from the Camellia family which is an evergreen plant and is native to China.5 The tea plant mainly is positioned in tropical and subtropical climates where there is a minimum of 50 inches of rainfall.6 It prefers a rich and moist areas located beneath the sun. There are two different tea leaves, this includes small and broad. The small leaf variety is known as Camellia sinensis which flourish in the cool, high mountain regions of central China and Japan. The broad leaf is known as Camellia assamica. It develops best in the moist, tropical climates found in Northeast India and provinces of China. Both plants produce dark green and shiny leaves creating a mouth-watering cup of tea! There are six types of tea which all belong to the same plant. The key is associated the taste and differences found in processing. For example, stopping the oxidation will stop the tea from forming and drying.
The polyphenols are stable as long as the leaves remain on the live plant. The process of starts naturally as soon as leaves are picked. This reaction is caused by the realise of “enzyme polyphenol oxidase in leaves”. By controlling the degree of oxidation, the tea maker creates a distinctive flavour and chemical profile of their tea.
Green, white and yellow teas construct to minimal oxidation since they are heated soon after picking. The polyphenol ingredients of these teas is therefore very similar to the fresh leaves, the infused tea liquid has a mild flavour. In contrast, for black tea, the leaves are cut and bruised. This disrupts the cell structure and allows all the leaf juices (containing polyphenols) and enzymes to mix together, allowing complete oxidation. As a result, black tea contains very few polyphenols as they are mostly converted to theaflavins and thearubigins. Thearubigins give black tea its distinct red-brown colour and stronger flavour.

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