Tea Ingredients | Catechin
Catechin is a type of polyphenol. It is a unique ingredient of tea with health effects such as reduction of bad cholesterol and stress relief.
In this page, we are going to introduce the basic knowledge of catechin and tips to effectively ingest catechin from tea.
What is Catechin?
Catechin is a type of polyphenol. It’s a unique ingredient of tea, which attributes bitterness and astringency in tea.
Many of you may have heard that polyphenol is good for your health, likewise, catechin is also one of the ingredients whose health effects are clinically proven.
There are four main catechins in tea that are;
- Epicatechin gallate
- Epigallocatechin and
- Epigallocatechin gallate
Each catechin has their own effects, and they also commonly have basic effects such as reduction of bad cholesterol.
Catechin attributes astringency in tea.
Astringency in tea mainly comes from catechin and caffeine.
Specifically, catechin contains astringency with bitterness, caffeine includes light and refreshing astringency.
Health effects of catechin
Health effects of catechin are listed below;
- Antibacterial / Detoxification
- Reduction of bad cholesterol
Let’s see in order:
Antibacterial / Detoxification
Catechin has effects of antibacterial and detoxification.
Specifically, it can be active against bacteria that cause O-157, flu, mycoplasma pneumonia. Besides, catechin has an effect of detoxification as it can easily be bonded to alkaloid that is a toxin found in many plants.
Catechin has an antioxidant effect.
Antioxidant is simply described as a function that detoxifies extra substances in our body.
It is an important function that can prevent all types of diseases as it plays a role that prevents tissues from aging and maintains the immune system.
Surprisingly, it is said that antioxidant in catechin is tens of times more effective than Vitamin C’s and E’s.
With the data, no wonder it is said that tea is good for your health.
Reduction of bad cholesterol
Reduction of bad cholesterol is also an effect of catechin.
Cholesterol has 2 types that are “HDL cholesterol (good)” and “LDL cholesterol (bad)”. Catechin has an effect that reduces LDL cholesterol.
Particularly, it is said that epigallocatechin gallate rich in tea has more of the effect.
You may have heard that tea leaves have an effect of deodorization.
This deodorization actually comes from catechin.
For instance, research done by Miki Ui et al. (1991) reports that chewing gums that contain catechin have an effect of oral deodorization.
You may feel relaxed while drinking tea.
In fact, the effect of drinking tea that relieves stress and tension is scientifically proved.
Research done by Takako Yamato et al. (2012) indicates that drinking tea and catechin tea on the market brings these effects of;
- stress/tension relief
- counteraction of fatigue and mood enhancement
Also, drinking catechin-rich tea on the market has an effect of anti-depression and decrease of low mood.
This shows that ingesting catechin by drinking tea can relieve your stress.
It is surprising that ordinary tea that we casually drink actually brings a variety of effects.
How to ingest catechin in tea
Here are 2 tips to ensure the ingestion of catechin in tea;
- use hot water at a high temperature
- purchase second / third flush tea
Let’s see in order.
Use hot water at a high temperature
Catechin has a characteristic that hardly dissolves at a low temperature. Whereas, it can dissolve well in hot water at a high temperature.
Although high temperatures can cause astringent in tea, we recommend brewing tea at a high temperature for the purpose of rich catechin.
Purchase second / third flush tea
Tea leaves are classified as first/second/third flush teas by the harvest times of year
First flush is considered as the most premium and flavorful tea, but second and third flush teas are recommended when expecting the ingestion of rich catechin.
Second and third flush teas grow in the times that the daylight hours are long, which results in rich catechin produced by sunlight.
Therefore, try second / third flush teas when you want to take rich catechin.