Yellow Tea - the "new" Green Tea for Health Benefits?


Copyright 2011 - Kris Heeter

Step aside green tea, there's a "new" tea in town.

That's right, Yellow Tea is hitting the streets and gaining popularity...

Research suggests that it packs a healthy punch that may just match up to or be better than green tea.

Antioxidants? It hasn't been completely flushed out yet but yellow tea may have more cancer-fighting power than green tea. Yellow tea may also be better at fighting liver toxicity.

Let's take a look...

Have you tried yellow tea?

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Of the six predominant teas of china - which do you prefer?

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Yellow Tea's History

Over two thirds of the world's population drink tea. Major tea producing countries include China, Japan and Indonesia. Although, tea as a commodity is becoming quite popular in other countries as well.

There are six major tea classifications from China: black, green, oolong, pu-euh, white, and yellow. These six all come from the plant Camellia sinensis.

Yellow tea has been around for centuries, but is considered to be a rare tea because of it's more complex methods of harvest and preparation. And, it's relatively "new" to Westerners.

Leaves for yellow tea are harvested when they are young - earlier than for green tea. Yellow tea is then oxidized (or fermented) for a longer period than green tea. It is not completely oxidized like oolong or black tea. The lighter color in the tea leaves comes from a slower drying phase.

Is Yellow Tea Healthier Than Green Tea?

The jury is still out on this but there are indications that yellow tea is just as healthy, if not more, than green tea.

Green tea has always been touted for its antioxidant and cancer-fighting abilities. A long history of scientific research backs many of the health claims. The antioxidant levels of yellow tea, however, have not yet been extensively studied. It has been hypothesized that yellow tea will have similar if not higher antioxidant levels due to the early harvest and slower drying phase. White tea is also thought to have higher antioxidant levels but, again, the studies on this are not extensive yet.

Phenolic compounds in the tea leaves are the antioxidants. There are several different phenolic compounds, one in particular, epogallocatechin (egcg), has been attributed to beneficial effects on the cardiovascular system, the nervous system, and the digestive system. Antioxidants in tea have also been implicated in lowering blood sugar levels, particularly with respect to diabetes, and in improving mental health.

Yellow tea has been recently noted, in a 2007 scientific study, to have higher capabilities of suppressing liver toxicity more efficiently than green, white, black, oolong, and pu-erh teas.

Finding Yellow Tea

Finding yellow tea here in the United States is a little challenging - it's not something that you will easily find in a main grocery store. Some specialty stores may carry it and there are some online sources - for example:

Additional References

Hashimoto et al. Yellow tea is more potent than other types of tea in suppressing liver toxicity induced by carbon tetrachloride in rats. Phytother Res. 2007 Jul;21(7):668-70.

Kuroda and Hara. Antimutagenic and anticarcinogenic activity of tea polyphenols. Mutat Res. 1999 Jan;436(1):69-97.

National Cancer Institute. Tea and Cancer Prevention: Strengths and Limits of the Evidence -

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Comments 19 comments

Shelly McRae profile image

Shelly McRae 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona

Nice hub. Good info on what is likely to be the new trend in tea. Thanks for sharing.

Gypsy Rose Lee profile image

Gypsy Rose Lee 5 years ago from Riga, Latvia

Thanks for the great info.

Will check if we have yellow tea here in Riga. I know we have green tea. Hope you have great holidays.

anglnwu profile image

anglnwu 5 years ago

I love green of all kinds. Yellow is not as well-known but it may be the next new star. Nice information and rated up.

AliciaC profile image

AliciaC 5 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

Interesting information, Kris. I've never heard of yellow tea before. I'll look for it when I go to a health food store or a specialty grocer. I'm interested in discovering what it tastes like.

Kris Heeter profile image

Kris Heeter 5 years ago from Indiana Author

@ShellyMcRae, @Gypsy Rose Lee, @anglnwu and @AliciaC - thanks for stopping by!

AliciaC - I'm going to be on the look out for it too. I'm curious to see what it tastes like. I believe it should be a bit milder than green tea

SanneL profile image

SanneL 5 years ago from Sweden

Thanks for a great hub!

Yellow tea sounds wonderful and I can't wait to try it out, and start adding it to my tea collection.

Debby Bruck profile image

Debby Bruck 5 years ago

Hello Kris ~ very interesting and useful. I love green tea and also have white tea for the taste and health benefits. We have also tried to grow some Camellia sinensis. I will happily share this with my husband. Blessings, Debby

ImChemist profile image

ImChemist 5 years ago

Im one of green tea fans , your hub is very useful .thank you

Peggy W profile image

Peggy W 5 years ago from Houston, Texas

Will look for yellow tea the next time I visit The Path of Tea in Houston where they carry over 100 varieties of organic teas from around the world. Thanks for this information. Up, useful and interesting votes!

Kris Heeter profile image

Kris Heeter 5 years ago from Indiana Author

Peggy - Thanks for stopping by! I hope you find it. I wish we had a tea store like that around here:)

Kathleen Cochran profile image

Kathleen Cochran 5 years ago from Atlanta, Georgia

I have been so proud of myself for changing from regular sweetened tea (which we drink by the gallon in the south in the summer) to green tea. It is lighter and more refreshing - and so good for you! Now I'm learning there is something even better. What would I do without my hubber friends who keep me informed? Thanks!

Kris Heeter profile image

Kris Heeter 5 years ago from Indiana Author

Kathleen - you are welcome:) It's great to hear you've switched to green tea - there are so many great health benefits!

randomcreative profile image

randomcreative 5 years ago from Milwaukee, Wisconsin

I haven't even heard of yellow tea! I'll have to keep my eye out for it.

Pamela99 profile image

Pamela99 5 years ago from United States

I drink green tea daily in several varieties and I am going to look for yellow tea to try it out. Thanks.

Kris Heeter profile image

Kris Heeter 5 years ago from Indiana Author

@Pammela99 - thanks for stopping by. I, too, drink many varieties of green tea. I'm on the look out for yellow tea too. I need to try our specialty store in town:)

Chefni profile image

Chefni 5 years ago from Pakistan

Thanks Kris, :)

This is very informative. As I am religious green tea drinker, I find this new information very exciting. I will definitely go and purchase some yellow tea for myself to see the difference :)

Thank you again :)

mary615 profile image

mary615 5 years ago from Florida

Very interesting Hub. I never tried yellow tea, only green tea. I'm willing to try it, though. Thanks for sharing this.

Kris Heeter profile image

Kris Heeter 5 years ago from Indiana Author

@mary615 - thanks for stopping by. The yellow tea is really hard to find in the U.S. (at least based on my experience). Some of our extensive markets that carry specialty food do not even have it. I'm tempted to try one of our Asian markets to see if they by chance have it!

BlissfulWriter profile image

BlissfulWriter 5 years ago

Great info and well written. I drunk green and white tea, but not yellow yet. Want to try.

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