Green Tea and Thriving After Cancer
When reading about healthy eating for cancer survivors, it is common to see green tea ranking high on the list of recommended foods. The reason for this is that green tea contains a high level of cancer-fighting compounds called catechins. In their book, Foods to Fight Cancer, doctors Richard Béliveau and Denis Gingras devote an entire chapter to discussing the cancer-fighting benefits of green tea. These doctors and other evidence-based research suggest that green tea can be an important part of thriving after cancer!
The Important Difference Between Black Tea and Green Tea
While green tea and black tea come from the same plant (Camellia sinensis), green tea is not fermented. The plant contains naturally occurring enzymes that start the fermentation process soon after the leaf is harvested. In order to prevent the fermentation that would lead to black tea, the green tea leaves are heated. The Chinese method for doing this is to roast the leaves, while the Japanese method is to steam them.
Why Should Cancer Thrivers Consider Japanese Green Tea?
The Chinese method of roasting the leaves results in a tea that is sweeter—having flavour notes of orchid, green bean, chestnut and honey. Japanese green tea flavour notes are described as grassy, asparagus, marine, vegetal and spinach. However, Japanese green tea is much higher in beneficial catechins. So, while it may take your palate some time to acquire the taste for Japanese green tea, the evidence indicates it will be worth it, as the amount of beneficial cancer-fighting components is significantly higher!
So, will you make the switch to Japanese green tea? Maybe you are thinking “I don’t like tea at all!” If so, stay tuned for next week’s blog when I will share a yummy green tea recipe for the non-tea lover.