Jasmine Green Tea: Benefits, Side Effects and How to Make it
Tea is a vital part of the human culture and society. For most tea lovers, tea is more than just a beverage it is a way of life. While coffee has become exceeding popular in the past decades, tea is still the most consumed beverage in the world disbar water. In the European and Asian countries tea is an essential part of the daily routine, while in America the type of tea consumed by majority is iced tea.
Tea is a refreshing beverage that is basically calories free, so it makes a great companion whether it’s a cold winter night or a hot summer eve. There are many different types of tea that can be prepared in a verity of different ways to appraise your taste. Tea is chock full of health benefits and has been used for centuries for its medicinal properties.
What is jasmine tea?
Jasmine tea is a scented tea that is made by adding blooms of jasmine to other teas. The most commonly used tea base for jasmine tea is green tea leaves but white and black tea is also used. The flowers that are used to make jasmine tea usually come for two common jasmine species i.e. Common Jasmine (Jasminum officinale) and Sampaguita (Jasminum sambac) (1).
Both these species belong to the Olive family. Jasmine tea is famous for its fragrant aroma and its refreshing taste. The jasmines are an evergreen shrub that are native to tropical and subtropical areas. The flowers are usually about 2.5 cm in diameter and are yellow or white in color. The flowers grow in a cluster of 3 or more on the shrub branches.
The jasmine flower are mated with the base tea in a machine for about 4 hours so that the flavor of the jasmine is thoroughly infused in the tea. The flowers may or may not be removed from the final product because the flowers at the end are completely dried and lose their fragrance.
Jasmine green tea can be consumed as iced tea or as a steaming hot cup. Jasmine tea is quite famous in Asia and is consumed not only as a beverage of choice but it is also used for its health benefits.
History of jasmine tea
The jasmine flower that is used to make scented tea originated in Iran and it was brought to China via Silk Road during the Tang Dynasty. In the initial days it was purely used for decorative purposes.
The history of making tea scented with jasmine flowers started in the South-Song Dynasty (more 1000 years ago) but it became a well-developed technique of making tea in Ming Dynasty. During the Ming Dynasty the raw material (quality of flower, the base tea leave, drying process etc.) that were used for making jasmine tea were well recorded.
Jasmine green tea was commercially manufactured for the first time at the beginning of 1900.
Over the years jasmine green tea gained astounding popularity and due to increase demand it became an important treading commodity. Jasmine flowers are unable to grow in the cold weather, so in the winter they had to be planted into pots and moved indoor so they would not wilt. This caused the price of jasmine tea to increase markedly.
In late 1900s the different countries planted jasmine flowers and stated making their own jasmine green tea but the Chinese jasmine green tea blend is still unmatched.
Substances contained in jasmine tea
Jasmine is tea mainly consists of two components, one is the base tea and the other is jasmine flowers.
The base tea that is usually preferred is the green tea because its flavor complements the jasmine flowers. The base tea can also be black, white or a variety of other teas. The base tea determines the nutritional value and the caffeine content. The base tea is also the source of the underlying flavor.
Jasmine flowers that are added to the base tea are used to enhance the flavor and fragrance. The jasmine flowers from two different jasmine species (Common Jasmine and Sampaguita) are mostly used in jasmine tea.
Nutritional value of jasmine tea
Jasmine green tea is a scented tea widely liked and consumed. Jasmine green tea not only tastes and smells fantastic but it is also a Pandora of health benefits. Jasmine green tea is free of calories and fat so it’s a great component that you can add to your diet routine.
It is also full of antioxidants that help your body fight damaged cells. Jasmine also has a relaxing effect on the mind and body so it’s a great way to relax at the end of the day or any time. Plain jasmine green tea contains no fat, calories, sodium, potassium, carbohydrates or vitamins.
Most people like to add lemon, honey or milk to their tea to give it an extra punch. When you add these things the nutritional value is altered according to the substance added.
Nutritional values of a plain cup of jasmine green tea are as follows:
|Nutrient||Amount per serving - one teabag (g)||% Daily value|
|Calcium||about 5 - 7 mg||1|
Is there any caffeine in jasmine tea?
All jasmine teas contain caffeine because they are usually made from the base of naturally caffeinated(Camellia sinensis) green tea leaves. The base tea for jasmine tea can range from black tea to green tea to white tea.
Different tea bases have different amount of caffeine.
The content of caffeine in jasmine tea depends on the base tea that is used to make it and the process used to manufacture the tea and the method of brewing the tea. Jasmine green tea has a lower caffeine content then jasmine black tea but higher than jasmine white tea. So if you’re trying to watch your caffeine intake make sure to read the packaging carefully or ask the tea supplier about the caffeine content of the specific brand of jasmine tea.
Overall benefits of jasmine tea
Jasmine green tea is an herbal that not only has a refreshing taste and aroma but also has many other benefits. Jasmine tea leave extract has been used in soaps, body washes, creams and even pharmaceutical medicines. Jasmine tea is a scented tea that has the aroma of jasmine flowers and has a soothing effect.
Some of the best uses and benefits of jasmine tea are as follows:
- Aromatherapy: Aromatherapy is fast becoming a popular practice. In aromatherapy natural essential oils are used that are extracted from flowers, barks and stems of different plants to enhance mental and physical wellbeing. The aroma from the oils helps stimulate different parts of the brain and helps relieve stress. The essential oils can also be absorbed through the skin and promote healing. Aromatherapy can be done by using scented candles, baths or massages. Jasmine green tea has a soothing aroma and it has been incorporated in aromatherapy to help relax the mind and the body. The scent of jasmine helps lower the heart beat and has a calming effect on the senses.
- Weight loss: When live in a time were junk food is consumed like water and sedentary life style is common. Now-a-days most of the food we consume is processed and loaded with carbs. Obesity has reached an all-time high in the world. It’s important to maintain weight within a proper perimeter not for vanity sake but for the sake of good health. Due to all the junk food plus the environmental pollution heart disease, diabetes and cancer have become more common. And I think we can all agree that losing weight is not as easy as gaining it. Studies have showed that drinking jasmine green tea helps reduce the number of fat cells in the body. Drinking jasmine green tea regularly with a proper diet not only helps reduce weight faster but also helps maintain it.
- Anti-aging: In this cutthroat world everyone is more worried about what’s on the outside then what’s on the inside and people spend a ton of money at beauty salons. Jasmine green tea might be a good and non-expensive alternative because it is chock full of antioxidants that help neutralize all the free radical in the body that might cause cell damage. Antioxidants not only help prevent disease but also make the skin look fresh and young. Jasmine green tea also helps reduce acne and pimples.
Health benefits of jasmine tea
Jasmine tea has been used for centuries for its medicinal properties and to add flavor to beverages. Jasmine tea is made when jasmine flowers are mixed with a base tea (mostly green tea), so jasmine green tea is full of both the health benefits of jasmine flower and green tea.
The impact of jasmine tea can be greatly altered if the base tea is changed (black or white).
These are some major health benefits of jasmine green tea:
- Fights bacteria: Bacteria are microorganism that can cause infections. Studies have proved that jasmine tea has certain antibacterial properties (2). Jasmine green tea can help protect the body against E.coli infection (food poisoning), it is a bacteria that is found in unsanitary cooking condition and incorrectly preserved food. Jasmine tea can also provide relive to people that are suffering from sore throat or flu. Along with fighting bacteria jasmine green tea also helps with the formation of good bacteria in the gastrointestinal system. Thus jasmine tea helps strengthen the intestinal system and prevent issues like diarrhea or ulcers.
- Antioxidant: One of the most notable feature of jasmine green tea is that it is packed full of antioxidants (3). The most important antioxidant within jasmine green tea is catechins, while in jasmine black tea it is theaflavins. Antioxidants helps slow down the process of aging. Free radicals are formed within the body due to oxidation reaction. These free radicals can cause cellular damage that can lead to many diseases. The antioxidants work within the body to detect the free radical or other harmful agents that might cause disease or compromise the immune system. Jasmine green tea thus helps boost immune system and exerts an anti-aging effect at the same time.
- Improves cardiovascular health: Due to all the junk food consumption and sedentary lifestyles the incidence of heart disease is on the rise. Forpeople that have personal or family history of heart disease, jasmine green tea can be a great help in preventing further problems. Jasmine green tea contains catechins that helps prevent the accumulation and formation of bad fat with in the body. The accumulation of cholesterol within the blood vessels can cause heart attack or stroke. Jasmine green tea helps lower the cholesterol level and the blood pressure thus decreasing the risk of heart disease (4).
- Relieves joint pains: Arthritis is an inflammatory disease of the joints that makes movement painful. There are many causes of arthritis like autoimmune disease, systemic disorder or infection. Arthritis makes the movement of joints painful and difficult, which in turn decrease the quality of life. Jasmine green tea contains certain elements that have an anti-inflammatory action. Jasmine green tea can help reduce the joint pain and discomfort. Elements in jasmine green tea not only help reduce inflammation but also help stop unwanted cellular oxygenation reactions. Incorporating a certain amount of jasmine tea in regular diet can help relive joint pain (5).
- Reduces cholesterol: Cholesterol is a natural compound that is present in the body. It is a part of the cell membrane and helps the formation of steroid compounds. Excess of cholesterol in the body can cause arteriosclerosis (narrowing of the blood vessels), which can lead to heart disease and stroke. Studies have shown that jasmine green tea helps reduce the accumulation of cholesterol and bad fat in the body (6, 7). It also helps prevent the formation of bad cholesterol thus reducing the chances of heart attack and stroke.
Side effects of jasmine tea
Jasmine green tea has an abundance of health benefits but it’s a law of nature that everything has two side so where there are health benefits there are bound to be some side effects. Jasmine green tea is a refreshing herbal tea that has relatively little side effects. There are not that many precautions that a person needs to think about when drinking jasmine green tea.
- Allergic reaction: An allergic reaction occurs when the immune system attacks substances that are usually harmless (like pollen, nuts or medicine) but are perceived as a danger. The allergic reaction can range from mild, which includes skin rash, to severe that includes breathing difficulty (anaphylactic shock). Although allergic reaction to jasmine green tea is rare but people that are allergic to pollen should take caution.
- Caffeine: Caffeine is an alkaloid that is present mostly in tea, coffee and chocolate. Caffeine helps stimulate the nervous system and fight away sleep. Although caffeine in small amount is good for the body and helps you get through the day, ingesting large amount of caffeine regularly is bad for the body. Caffeine is an addictive substance and it is easy to become dependent on it if you take it repeatedly during the day irrespective of the form. People who suffer from heart disease, ulcers or anxiety should avoid caffeine as it aggravates their condition. The amount of caffeine present in jasmine tea is dependent upon the base tea, so if you’re trying to avoid caffeine buy the brand with low caffeine content.
- Drug interaction: Drug interaction is a state that occurs when a substance affects the action or the potency of a drug when booth are administered together. While jasmine does not cause many drug interaction, the base green tea can cause adverse reaction when administered with certain drugs. Green tea should be avoided if you are taking any beta-blockers or lithium because a drug interaction can occur that can reduce the effectiveness of the drug.
- Ulcers: Stomach ulcers occur when there is a breach in the continuity of the mucosal lining. A stomach ulcers can occur due to stress, infection or systemic disorder. The symptoms of stomach ulcers can range from mild discomfort to severe pain. Jasmine green tea has an acidic pH so it should be avoided if you have stomach ulcers as it exacerbates the condition.
- Pregnancy:It is common knowledge that caffeine should be avoided during pregnancy because it increases the incidence of miscarriage. So expecting mothers are recommend to reduce the tea or coffee intake to maximum of one cup a day. Women who have a history of stillbirths or miscarriages should avoid caffeine altogether during their pregnancy. While jasmine is commonly used in aroma therapy it might not be a good idea to use it during pregnancy because the chemicals released may pose danger to the fetus.
How to prepare jasmine tea
All types of teas are available in both loose packing and teabags. While tea bags are fine for making other teas, it’s important that when you make jasmine tea you use loose tea leaves. In jasmine tea, green tea is mostly used as the tea base but white tea and black tea base is also available. Jasmine tea is only as good as its leaves and when the leaves are out in the small packaging of the tea bag they may break and form into dust like particles. Broken tea leaves lose their essential oils and fragrance, they also release excess tannins that make the tea bitter and cutting. When you make tea with loose tea leaves (mixed with fresh jasmine leaves if you have any)and without the constraints of the tea bag, it allows the flavor to diffuse more evenly and make a robust flavored cup of jasmine tea.
When making a perfect cup of tea also pay close attention to the foundation of tea that is the water.
Take about 8 ounces of water in a tea kettle and heat it to the boiling point. Now there are two ways to go from here, the first is that you can add 2 teaspoons of jasmine tea leaves and let it brew for a few seconds then turn off the heat and let the flavors infuse for 2 minutes. Then take a cup put a strainer on top and pour yourself a steaming cup.
The second thing you can do is pour the hot water in a cup and add 2 teaspoons of jasmine tea leaves and let the flavor infuse and the leaves settle down, your cup of tea is ready. Even if you prefer your tea lukewarm always heat your water to boiling point before adding tea leaves so that the flavors can fully infuse.You can always let it cool to the temperature that you like.
Everyone likes their tea different so don’t be shy to experiment a little with your tea, give your taste a chance, broaden its horizons. There are many different things that you can add to enhance the flavor of your tea.
Adding a little bit of honey or sugar to your tea is a great idea for people who don’t like the sharp taste of jasmine green tea. Few drops of lemon juice also greatly complements jasmine tea. Some people like to add a few tea spoons of milk to their cup of tea to add an extra dimension to the tea.
The bottom line
Jasmine green tea has lots of benefits.
In addition to its bacteria fighting and antioxidant properties it also improves cardiovascular health and relieves joint pain. It also has positive effects on lowering cholesterol levels. On the other hand drinking of jasmine tea has some risks. Some of the most important side effects of jasmine green tea are caffeine content, risk of allergic reaction and a risk of aggravating stomach ulcers due to its acidic pH. In pregnancy this tea should only be drink with moderation (a cup once a week is okay but a cup daily would be too much).
Make sure you ask your physician for advice if you want to drink jasmine green tea in pregnancy. Also you should always ask your doctor before you start drinking this tea if you take any medication on a regular basis (due to possible interactions with jasmine tea).
|Written by:||Michal Vilímovský (EN)|
|Education:||Medical student, 3rd Faculty of Medicine, Charles University, Prague, Czech Republic|
See numbered references in the article.
Dollarphotoclub.com and Pixabay.com
|Published:||March 9, 2016 8:33 PM|
|Next scheduled update:||March 9, 2018 8:33 PM|