Green tea is, however, being overtaken by a new variety called purple tea which has higher levels and a greater range of antioxidants than any other tea.
Grown in the volcanic soils around the Mount Kenya region, the purple leaf contains a powerful antioxidant called anthocyanin, which reportedly makes its consumer feel healthier, more energetic and look better within a short period of time.
Purple tea is particularly beneficial to women as it brings the following health benefits.
The beauty industry has shown great interest in purple tea due to its anti-ageing benefits to the skin, prevention of hair loss and its ability to enhance the skin tone.
Skin ageing, inflammation and cell damage occurs due to excessive exposure to ultraviolet light. Polyphenols found in purple tea have been shown to inhibit the damage.
Extracts from purple tea are being incorporated in cosmetics such as lotions, sunscreens, shampoos, body gels and bath salts.
A strong brew of the tea mixed with lemon can also be applied directly to the skin for an even tone and on the scalp to stop hair loss and promote growth of new hair.
2.) Weight loss
Purple tea contains a unique compound, a polyphenol called GHG which is not found in other teas and which helps in controlling diet induced weight gain by enhancing good digestion, increased metabolism rate and reducing fat absorption by hindering pancreatic lipase, the enzyme responsible for the digestion and absorption of fats in the intestines.
3.) Cancer prevention and inhibition
Anthocyanins have been found to cause the death of cancer cells, prevent proliferation of human cancer cells, induce differentiation of cancer cells, inhibit the growth of new blood vessels that foster tumour growth and prevent cancer cell invasion.
4.) Cardiovascular diseases prevention
Cardiovascular diseases are the leading cause of death in developed countries with high blood pressure being the highest contributor of CVD deaths.
Anthocyanin is known to be useful against cardiovascular diseases by reducing blood pressure, inflammation as well as improving endothelial structure, function and capillary strength.
5.) Improved cognitive function
Studies have shown that catechins, which are found in high levels in purple tea, have the ability to permeate the brain and enhance brain antioxidant capability.
This helps prevent memory impairment and brain ageing which reduces ailments linked to oxidative stress such as Alzheimer’s disease, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s disease and depression among others.