Orange and grapefruit green tea

The orange and grapefruit give the tea fruity tones, also enhanced by the carrot and pumpkin. A blend that gives the palate a fresh citrus taste, able to pleasantly quench thirst in the summer.
The orange peels give a citrusy but delicate flavour, in combination with the green tea. If you taste this tea hot with such a delicious fruit finish, you will surely also enjoy the fragrant scents of orange and grapefruit. In summer, it is a resource that quenches thirst and helps recover energy and mineral salts.

Properties and benefits

This tea is also a set of beneficial qualities for our body. Starting with green tea, present in abundance in this infusion, which is considered one of the healthiest drinks ever. This type of tea has many antioxidants useful for our well-being, both for metabolism and for brain function and heart health. Tea is rich in polyphenols, natural compounds that have positive effects on well-being by protecting cells from free radicals and aging.
It contains a catechin called epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG), which help prevent cellular damage, Green tea also contains minerals that can be beneficial to health, and especially substances known as nervous system stimulants. Green tea helps maintain concentration and attention, thanks to caffeine (theine). It is present in smaller doses than in coffee, and for this reason it does not cause nervousness or agitation effects. It also contains the amino acid L-Theanine, which soothes anxiety and increases feelings of relaxation. Caffeine and L-Theanine can combine to improve energy and alertness in a balanced way.
The fat-burning effect of green tea is much discussed, and if combined with a low-calorie diet, it can give results. It is a food that stimulates the metabolism and increases the burning of fats, to make them available as energy. An important ingredient in tea is given by orange peels, already known in ancient Chinese medicine for their beneficial potential. They are rich in vitamin C which strengthens our immune system, they contain pectins and the hesperidin molecule (natural anti-inflammatory) which help to counteract the appearance of cholesterol.

Thanks also to other antioxidants, tea with orange peel was in the past considered useful in reacting against swelling and irritation. This blend is also suitable for increasing probiotic bacteria in the intestines, which benefit our immune system. The hot infusion with green tea and orange is useful, to counteract the states of nasal congestion with an excess of mucus, given that both the orange peel and the grapefruit have an expectorant function. The digestive benefits of green tea and citrus fruits promote the well-being of the stomach, soothe irritations and reduce the swelling of intestinal gas. It also helps in cases of nausea or after a heavy meal and a small excess of alcohol. This infusion is also useful for giving a perfumed breath, as well as quenching thirst.

Origins and History of cultivation

The tea plant is native to areas of East Asia, the Indian subcontinent and Southeast Asia. Today tea is grown all over the world in tropical and subtropical regions, but the difference between green and black tea is the method of preparation. Green tea undergoes less processing and oxidation, which results in a different color and flavor. Green tea processing originated in China and is believed to have been used for over 3,000 years. The Chinese population initially consumed it little, it was reserved for the elite, but over the centuries it spread more and more. We know that the historical and literary references to tea concerned green tea.
In ancient times, tea leaves were not prepared in infusion, but rather chewed and eaten. Only around 2700 BC. they were boiled and drunk. Legend has it that it was Emperor Shennong who discovered how good and refreshing they are when infused. Around the 6th century, tea became more available, moving from a luxury drink to a common brew. Tea ceremonies were famous, especially in Japan thanks to the Buddhist monks who imported it from China. Over time, the tea spread to many other Asian countries, although today China and Japan remain the largest producers of green tea. It was then made known from the nineteenth century onwards, in many continents, above all by the trade of the Anglo-Saxons. Today green tea has become a popular drink all over the world (about 15% of all tea consumed).
Recall that the nameof the plant, Camellia derives from the surname of Reverend Georg Kamel (1661-1706), a lay Jesuit, pharmacist and missionary in the Philippines, who studied oriental plants for a long time. Sinensis means Chinese, given the enormous diffusion of this plant in China. The basic ingredient of green tea is combined with orange peel, which has an equally thousand-year history. We know that the tree was born in China over 4000 years ago, as a hybrid between pomelo and mandarin, cultivated for its fruit and soon spread to many countries.
The orange tree easily adapts to different environmental conditions once planted. For this reason, it adapted well to oriental trade, and through the Arabs it arrived in Asia Minor, in North Africa and finally in Europe. In Greek mythology, the orange recalls Juno, who brought as a dowry to her marriage to Jupiter some small trees with golden fruits, the oranges. For this reason, the fruit was a symbol of fertility and conjugal love. In fact, orange blossoms are typical wishes for marriage. After the cultivation mainly with the function of ornamental plants, in the Renaissance in Italy the cultivation of the sweet orange began to be brought to the table. The plant was increasingly appreciated from the eighteenth century, still today for the beauty of the flowers and for its fruits.

Plant and flowers

The tea plant or Camellia sinensis, is an evergreen woody shrub of the Theaceae family. Different varieties of tea are obtained from the leaves, including green tea. The plant can even reach 16 meters in height, but it is cut to less than 2 meters to facilitate hand-picking of the leaves, which is repeated every 1-2 weeks. Four varieties of Camellia sinensis are recognised, of which C. sinensis var. sinensis and C. sinensis var. assamica (JW Masters) Kitamura are the most used for the production of tea.
Tea prefers the climate of cool and humid tropical plateaus, and deciduous forests. It grows well on sandy and clayey soils, always well drained. Young, light green tea leaves are preferred for harvesting, although the age of the leaves determines different tea qualities – the chemical composition changes. The flowers are white, fragrant, and are hermaphroditic (they have male and female organs). The orange tree is Citrus sinensis L. belonging to the Rutaceae family. The fruits of sweet oranges are distinguished from bitter oranges.
Citrus sinensis can reach 12 metres, with elongated leaves and white flowers. The fruits are round and orange, with a rough skin. The tree only rests for 3 months, so it often flowers and bears fruit at the same time: the first oranges can be harvested in November, while the last ones in May and June. There are many varieties of orange, because this citrus fruit grows all over the world: for table use, squeezed oranges, for the production of juices, candied fruit and dried oranges.

Nutritional values of green tea, orange and grapefruit

Green tea contains several antioxidants, including EGCg (epigallocatechin gallate). In addition, it shows good levels of potassium, zinc, iron, magnesium and manganese. It makes available methylxanthines (caffeine, theobromine, theophylline), vitamin C and B vitamins (thiamine, riboflavin, niacin). The orange peel brings potassium, Vitamin C and Vitamin A, iron and copper, vitamins of group B to the drink.

How to prepare orange and grapefruit green tea

The infusion is obtained by placing in a cup (250 ml), about 3-5 grams of the mixture of green tea, orange and grapefruit, with water at 80 °C. Let it steep for 2 to 3 minutes before drinking this green tea. Add honey or sugar, if desired.

Orange and grapefruit green tea: side effects and contraindications

The excess intake of green tea can cause some side effects, so it is advisable to respect the indicated doses. The content of theine (caffeine) can trigger disorders if it is taken in excessive quantities, causing nervousness, anxiety, insomnia, rapid heartbeat. Despite having a lower caffeine content than other types of tea, green tea can affect the functioning of the nervous system, causing palpitations, insomnia, poor appetite, irritability and restlessness.
Do not take the tea on an empty stomach if you have problems such as stomach ulcers or irritable bowel syndrome. Avoid high doses of green tea during pregnancy, especially in the first months, and while breastfeeding. Also, high doses of tea may affect thyroid function and cause liver strain. Consult a specialist in case of chronic pathologies.

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