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What is White Tea?

Figuring out which tea you like can be a little daunting, especially when first trying it out. It’s hard to know which one you’ll like, since their names are usually colors and not actual flavors. However, with just a few tries, you can get a sense for what kind of tea you like and don’t like.

White tea is a subtly-flavored and low-caffeine tea originating in China. It is the least processed of the true teas. White tea also has numerous health benefits that make it a worthy drink.

Whether you’ve had some experience with tea or are completely new to it, it can be confusing to decide on flavors when you first hear about them. As for white tea, read on to learn what to expect from your first cup and why you’ll want to give it a chance.

Where Does White Tea Come From?

White tea originally came from Fuding, in the Fujian Province of South East China.  Now, white tea is grown in other regions of China as well as countries like India, Africa, Taiwan and even the state of Hawaii. 

White tea comes from the plant Da Bai, a variety of the camellia sinensis plant. Interestingly, Da Bai translates to “great white” in English.  

What Makes White Tea Different?

what is white tea

White tea is the least processed of the true teas from the camellia sinensis plant.  The most expensive versions of white tea are processed by hand, putting it on an artisan level. 

What Does White Tea Taste Like?

With a delicate taste and rich aroma, white tea is often described as fruity, floral, fresh, and delicate.  White teas are often infused with other flavors like jasmine or honey.

How Much Caffeine is in White Tea?

Along with the taste, you’ll want to note that white tea has a low caffeine content compared to other true teas. This type of tea has the least amount of caffeine out of all teas with only 15 to 30 mg per eight ounce serving. 

How To Store White Tea

To keep your tea at its freshest, keep it in a cool, dry place in a container away from any light. 

When stored properly, unflavored tea should keep its quality for 1-2 years, while flavored tea can stay fresh for about 6 months to a year.

How to Brew White Tea

To experience the freshest cup of white tea, start with purified water, the best water for tea.  

Your water for brewing white tea should be between 175 to 190 ℉.  Note that this temperature is slightly below boiling – too hot a temperature can damage the delicate tea leaves.

White teas should be steeped between 2-3 minutes. 

how to brew white tea

Health Benefits of White Tea

You often hear about how healthy tea is, making it a popular alternative to coffee as people switch from a high-caffeine drink and a low-caffeine drink. As for white tea, here are some of its health benefits:

  • Antioxidants: white tea is rich in antioxidants, which combat against the harms of free radical, which can lead to inflammation and weakened immunity,
  • Polyphenols: white tea contains polyphenols, which help reduce the risk of heart disease and improve immunity,
  • Weight loss: the epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) and caffeine found in white tea combine to burn body fat,
  • Fighting cancer: more research is needed here, but studies have indicated that consuming large amounts of white tea stopped the spread and growth of colon cancer cells,
  • Bone health: the catechins that white tea contains help bone growth and stop breakdown in the bones, helping to prevent osteoporosis,
  • EGCG: along with its contribution to weight loss, the EGCG found in white tea has been shown in studies to reduce the risk of Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s disease.

White Tea is a Delicate Low Caffeine Choice

White tea is a great option when you want to drink a true tea with a delicate flavor and low caffeine content.  Along with a fresh and delicate flavor profile, white tea offers a ton of health benefits.  So why not brew up a pot today?

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