Cooling Tea: Which Teas Are Cooling? Which are Heaty?
According to Traditional Chinese Medicine, heat and inflammation of the body can lead to discomfort of the throat and lungs. Too much heat can result in dry skin and eyes as well as acne. At worst, it may result in cough with white or yellow phlegm, runny noses, fever, or even constipation.
The good news is that cooling teas can negate heat, even if you brew a hot cup. The goal of this article isn't to provide you with exotic medicinal herbal blends. For those, you should consult a local Chinese Medicine practitioner who can examine your personal conditions. Instead, we focus on leaf and herbal teas that are great as a daily drink to enjoy, while balancing the heat levels. Because they're not offered in pills or in other concentrated form, it's hard to suffer from side effects as a result of an overdose.
Cooling Loose Leaf Tea
Even traditional teas made from the Camellia Sinenses tea plant can be cooling. It however, really depends on the type of tea that you're looking for. The 'cooling' degree of such teas are mainly dependent on the amount of oxidation the leaves have undergone.
Is Green Tea Cooling for the Body? What about other Teas?
Green teas are minimally oxidised and therefore are generally seen as the most cooling. Black teas however are fully oxidised, and therefore considered 'warming' or 'heaty'. In between those two, you've semi-oxidised oolong teas.
Generally speaking, green teas and lightly oxidised oolongs like Tie Guan Yin, can be regarded as cooling. Therefore, they're are suitable for people who heaty and inflammed. This appears the most often during summers, and young people tend to have more heat then old people.
In contrast, dark oolongs (such as Da hong pao) and black teas are considered 'warming'. They're great if you lack heat. This often results in having cold feet and hands or generally feeling low in energy. Now you know this, it make a lot of sense that you or people in your surrounding often reach for a cup of black tea during cold winters.
Cooling Chinese Herbal Tea
Beside leaf tea, you've the herbal teas. Based on the official definition, those aren't made from the tea plant, and therefore are officially known as 'tisane'. Nevertheless, 'herbal tea' is still the most used term today. Among herbs that are suitable for brewing a cup of tea, the most popular ones are flowers.
Chrysanthemum teas are the most popular cooling herbal teas, because they're not too overly strong and have a delicious soothing flavour. To fight some serious inflammation people love to go for honeysuckle flowers. Especially, when one also suffers from flu or running noses. Kuding tea also fights common colds, but also are beneficial for those who suffer from headache and red eyes. This herb also have some other benefits and side effects that you might want to know more about.