Many people in the West are seeking alternatives to caffeine based beverages and look to the benefits of green tea. This tea is a traditional part of daily life in several countries, including China, Japan, Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Korea and the Middle East. The caffeine content of the tea is much reduced and this is one of its attractive features as caffeine can cause side effects, such as insomnia.

Green tea is widely available now, in health stores and supermarkets. The guidance is to use one teaspoon per cup. Lots of people with sore throats drink the tea mixed with honey, as it is very soothing. It was first drunk in China and there are several varieties there. It’s grown across many provinces and the most well known variety is Longjing. Gunpowder Tea and Bi Luo Chun are also popular. The tea is graded according to quality. The Chinese are firm believers in the benefits of green tea.

Almost no other type of tea is consumed in Japan. They have a wide range of varieties at different cost. One of the varieties is called Matcha and it is a high grade tea used in the traditional tea ceremony. It’s also an ice cream flavor and it is used in sweets. As in China, green tea is part of the culture.

There have been many claims made, as the result of medical studies, clinical trials and anecdotal evidence as to the benefits of green tea. It is said to help in the prevention of a number of diseases, including diabetes, inflammatory bowel disease and certain types of cancer. Supporters also say that it lowers cholesterol, thus lessening the chance of heart attacks and strokes. Even bad breath is said to be affected by the benefits of green tea as it destroys the bacteria that causes it.

Many tests have been conducted on elderly people in order to assess their mental alertness after prolonged consumption of green tea. Green tea drinkers have shown less mental impairment and it is also believed that the tea boosts the immune system, fighting off disease. Green tea can also help to minimize stress levels.

Whether, the taste of the tea or the health benefits are the motive, there are numerous products available to buy. Loose tea is sold for tea making and there is also a powder variety, which is suitable for making ice cream and smoothie drinks. For convenience, tea bags containing loose tea are also for sale. There is even a Japanese Tea Ceremony kit, a very relaxed way of enjoying the benefits of green tea.