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  • An Overview of Assam Tea

    A study in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition reported that tea is actually healthier for the body than just plain water. This is because tea has a unique property that can re-hydrate the body while at the same time containing essential antioxidants that help in fighting against harmful diseases. Due to these antioxidants, drinking tea can actually help in providing protection against different types of cancer such as mouth, breast, lung, colorectal, pancreas, skin, bladder and esophageal; as well as stroke, and other blood pressure and heart related diseases.

    What is Assam Black Tea?

    One of the most common varieties of tea is the Assam black tea, which is primarily a black tea named after its originating region, Assam in India. The Indian state of Assam is the second biggest commercial tea production region after southern China, and the world’s largest tea growing area. This is the reason why Assam tea is exported to many different countries worldwide, and not just consumed locally like many other varieties.

    A person plucking tea leaves in Assam

    Photograph by Diganta Talukdar

    Qualities of Assam Tea

    Assam tea is produced specifically from the Camellia sinensis variety assamica plant that is mostly grown at or near sea level. Assam is widely known for its briskness, body, strong and malty flavor, and bright color. The blends containing Assam teas are often sold as breakfast teas in most English-speaking countries, with the most renowned names being those of English breakfast tea, Scottish breakfast tea, and Irish breakfast tea.

    A Little History

    Since it came from a different variety of the tea plant Camellia sinensis, which is the Camellia assamica, this beverage was first tried and loved by European tea lovers in the 19th century as the sub-continent opened up. A Scottish adventurer named Robert Bruce discovered this special variety in 1823, where it was found growing wild in Assam.

    It was in the 1830’s when this variety was classified as Camellia sinensis var. assamica and because of its wider and darker green leaves, it was easily distinguished from the usual Chinese tea variety.

    A Taste of Assam

    Assam tea has its unique taste due to its growing conditions in India. It is planted near sea level and enjoys the conditions of abundant rain, and extreme heat and humidity. This tea type has a strong bright color with a unique malty taste and briskness that one can experience with a single sip. As it travels well Assam tea can be enjoyed without the need of going to its originating place, India.

    Cup of Assam tea

    Photograph by Hari Prasad Nadig

    Assam Tea Health Benefits

    It is widely known that drinking tea has several health benefits especially combined with a healthy diet and active lifestyle. The different Assam tea benefits include the following:

    1. Lose body fat. Many individuals who drink tea for health benefits do so as it has been shown that drinking tea can help the body have a faster metabolism thus, burning more calories and excess fats. When the metabolism of the body is accelerated, fats are burned faster than the usual rate. Teas can also help curb cravings particularly for sweet foods such as chocolates, ice creams, and others.
    2. Fight cancer. Recent studies have shown that keeping an active lifestyle along with a healthy diet is perhaps the best way to prevent cancer from occurring. Drinking tea is also beneficial when it comes to cancer prevention simply because it contains powerful antioxidants that are able to ward off harmful and damaging free radicals, which in return can strengthen the cells and one’s metabolism.
    3. Improved mental health. Assam tea works as both a natural sedative and a stimulant, which is why it can help in boosting the energy needed by the body throughout the day. When the body gets the right amount of energy it needs, the brain works with more efficient functionally thus, improving one’s mental health.  Assam tea also contains the amino acid theanine. The known theanine benefits include the ability to relax one’s mind for a pleasant and calming experience.
    4. Fights flu symptoms. Preparing a cup of Assam daily can actually help decrease the perseverance of the common flu. This is because it contains EGCG, a powerful antioxidant that aids the body in fighting off flu symptoms including the dreading influenza virus.
    5. Dental health. Studies have shown that tea drinkers actually have healthier teeth and gums (when both tea-drinkers and non-drinkers having proper oral health care). This is because the minerals present in teas aids in preventing the formation of cavities, bad breath, tooth decay, and bacterial infections.