Sunday, March 1, 2009

Wu Long or Wu Yi Tea for Beautiful Skin?

By Caitlin Ryan

Did you know that merely drinking a few delicious mugs of tea per day can boost the quality of your skin and fight premature aging? Wu yi tea has been drunk for centuries in the Asian world and thankfully, it is finally catching on in the Western world. Its age-fighting capabilities are remarkable! It may be YOUR answer to maintaining youthful skin!

Among oolong teas, wu long and wu yi have both become highly popular teas for weight loss as well as fighting aging. They are both incredibly healthy teas, but why is one touted over the other? Let us explore the world of tea for a moment.

Tea is born from Camellia sinensis, but then processed in different ways after harvest. Green tea, white tea, oolong tea and black tea are the main types of tea.

Green tea and white tea are highly nutritious because they are not fermented and none of their natural properties are destroyed. However, they are both pretty grassy tasting and not a lot of people enjoy their flavor. White tea is slightly more delicate merely because it is picked earlier than green tea. Though black tea is the most popular in the Western world because of its mild flavor, it is not as nutritious because it has been fermented for too long to maintain the same nutritional values.

Oolong tea, on the other hand, is both pleasant tasting and highly nutritious. This is because they are fermented for a short time. There are two main varietals of oolong tea: wu long and wu yi. The wu long tealeaves are picked during the first growth cycle of the tea plant, which is then allowed to go through several more growth cycles.

Tea connoisseurs tend to believe that because of this, wu long tea is of higher quality and it is usually priced higher than wu yi tea. Wu yi tea, though, has the same health benefits and is just as capable of fighting aging as wu long tea. It is usually less expensive, and the flavor and aroma differences are so subtle that I personally feel that it is not worth the extra dollars to buy wu long tea versus wu yi tea. Both teas will help me maintain my youthful skin!

Tea can be compared to wine in this manner. Though there are some lovely wines available for $50 or more a bottle, if you can purchase a $20 bottle of Shiraz that is quite enjoyable, why spend $50? At the same time, you probably would not find the same enjoyment with a bottle of Shiraz that cost $5, right? For this reason, you probably will not find a lot of wu yi tea on the supermarket shelves next to the economy packs of black tea!

It does not matter whether it is wu yi or wu long tea when it comes to fighting free radicals and preventing premature aging. Tea contains highly powerful antioxidants that improve your skin health by eliminating free radicals and the damage they incur. For this reason, your skin will remain youthful for far longer when free radicals are not able to break down collagen and cause wrinkling, sagging skin.

Wu yi tea is also important for the regeneration of skin cells. Enjoying a mug of wu yi tea can calm your body.

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