Pu erh tea is derived from the large leaf variety of the camellia sinensis plant from where green tea, black tea and oolong tea are also obtained. The term "pu erh" is taken from the Pu erh county in the Yunnan province of China where the tea is produced. The best pu erh tea is said to be produced in the a group of famous mountains in Yunnan that are renowned for their climate and environment.
Pu erh Tea BenefitsPu erh tea is processed or aged in different ways. Some pu erh varieties are purchased raw or green - meaning it has not undergone an extensive oxidation process (hence it is similar to green tea) - and some are purchased in the post-fermented stage where it shares a lot of commonalities with black and oolong tea. Though oftentimes classified as a type of black tea, pu erh tea is largely considered to be of a separate variety that holds a different and many say, higher status, than black tea.
Pu erh tea is usually aged and consumed several years after its production. The older the tea, the more valuable it gets. Like a good wine, pu erh tea ought to be slowly drunk while the leaves settle down in the cup.
Pu erh tea is available either in loose leaf form, or in tea bag form, or in compacted cake form (also known as brick). The cake form of pu erh tea usually attracts a lot of attention from tea collectors as many of the older teas are traditionally done in this form.
When aged well, pu erh tea produces a pleasant-tasting drink that is often served in Chinese restaurants after heavy meals. Its fat-breaking abilities are recognized by the Chinese people and the tea is often considered the perfect drink to complement an oil and fat-laden feast.
Pu erh tea typically takes on a dark, strong brown color that's almost akin to that of black tea, but possesses a somewhat mellower, liquor-like flavor.
Pu erh tea possesses many of the antioxidant qualities found in green tea, black tea and oolong tea. Pu erh tea contains polyphenols that attack free radicals in the body to help ensure protection against a host of diseases.
The following are the health benefits attributed to pu erh tea:
- Pu erh tea is known to help lower blood cholesterol levels.
- Pu erh tea may help boost the flow of blood and help enhance circulation.
- Pu erh tea may help inhibit the formation and growth of cancer cells.
- Pu erh tea aids in the proper digestion of food.
- Pu erh tea may help invigorate the spleen.
- Pu erh tea is known to help break down and thus reduce fat in the system.
- Pu erh tea may help remove toxins.
- Pu erh tea may help heal aches and pains.