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Tea Top Exotic teas Production/Consumption Health


Tea from genus Ilex (holly trees)

Active Ingredients
caffeine, chlorogenic acids, saponins

Ku-Ding Tea

In China and Japan, leaves of Ilex kudingcha C. J. Tseng, I. cornuta (Chinese holly), and I. latifolia Thunb. are used for the Ku-Ding Tea. Its extreme bitterness comes from triterpene saponins, mainly those derived from ursolic acid. A purified saponin fraction of Ilex pubescens root is known to exhibit anti-inflammatory and analgesic effects.[1] The effect of leaf extract is still unknown.

Mate Tea

In Brazil and Paraguay, leaves of Ilex paraguayensis or I. paraguensis or I. paraguariensis are used for Mate tea.[2] It is also called yerba mate and contains caffeine, caffeic acid and chlorogenic acids (in contrast to what is believed, no tannin is included [2]). The plant was first cultivated and became widespread by Jesuit missionaries after Spanish conquest.[3]

Yaupon, asi or Black Drink

Indians of the South-Eastern United States used leaves of Ilex cassine, I. vomitoria, and I. dahoon to brew a spiritual drink called Yaupon or black drink. The drink was believed to cause sweat and vomiting but its active ingredient is caffeine. In proper dilution, the drink was used as stimulant during the civil war in Southern North America.[2]

  1. Wang JR, Zhou H, Jiang ZH, Wong YF, Liu L (2008) In vivo anti-inflammatory and analgesic activities of a purified saponin fraction derived from the root of Ilex pubescens. Biol Pharm Bull 31(4):643-50
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 Martin H (1977) The history of Ilex with special reference to Australia. Australian Journal of Botany 25,655-673
  3. Herzfeld H (1920) Ilex paraguensis or la yerba mate. Pharm Era 53,353-354

Tea from family Myrtaceae

Active Ingredients

Guaba Tea

The guava tea, or leaves of guava tree (Psidium guajava), is said to reduce the blood glucose level through its polyphenols. In Japan, it is officially recognized as Foods for Specified Health Use (FOSHU), but no refereed journal article is found in Medline about its function. Many commercial sites promote its anti-allergic (esp. pollen allergy) effect, but no effect was found in 2-week activity test using rats [1].

Syzygium Tea

Syzygium Tea, which is sold for its anti-allergic effect, is made from genus Syzygium in Myrtaceae. Because the culinary herb 'Clove' is Syzygium aromaticum, you can consider this tea as 'Clove' tea.

Tea from family Fabaceae

Rooibos Tea

Rooibos tea is dried and oxidized leaves of Aspalathus linearis. It contains no caffeine or tannins, and no effect to drug metabolism is reported [1]. A unique flavonoid 'aspalathin' is isolated from this plant [2]

  1. 1.0 1.1 Matsuda K, Nishimura Y, Kurata N, Iwase M, Yasuhara H (2007) Effects of continuous ingestion of herbal teas on intestinal CYP3A in the rat. J Pharmacol Sci 103(2):214-21
  2. Koeppen BH, Roux DG (1966) C-glycosylflavonoids. The chemistry of aspalathin. Biochem J 99(3):604-9
    Bramati L, Minoggio M, Gardana C, Simonetti P, Mauri P, Pietta P (2002) Quantitative characterization of flavonoid compounds in Rooibos tea (Aspalathus linearis) by LC-UV/DAD. J Agric Food Chem 50(20):5513-9

Other teas

Tencha (Rose family, )

Tencha is dried leaves of Rubus suavissimus S. Lee (Category:Rosaceae or rose family) originally from southern China. It contains a sweet stevioside, called rubinoside. It is often used to reduce pollen allergy in Japan, but its in vitro activity is known to be less than the fruit hull of mangosteen (Garcinia mangostana L.)[1]

  1. Nakatani K, Atsumi M, Arakawa T, Oosawa K, Shimura S, Nakahata N, Ohizumi Y (2002) Inhibitions of histamine release and prostaglandin E2 synthesis by mangosteen, a Thai medicinal plant. Biol Pharm Bull 25(9):1137-41

Tea from genus Camellia

Active Ingredients
caffeine, catechins, saponins

Black Oolong

Black oolong tea is roasted standard oolong tea. See here for details.

Misc. in Japan


 播磨章一 「茶花の史的考察」より[1]
点て茶の名称 使用茶 泡重視 茶筅 桶茶性 茶受け
陰干し茶 (全国) 枝葉花 × 穀類(椀内)
タテ茶 (糸魚川) 番茶、茶花 漬物類(椀外)
バタバタ茶 (蛭谷) 黒茶、茶花 漬物類(椀外)
ボテボテ茶 (島根、出雲) 陰干し茶、茶花  煮豆、冷や飯、漬物など(椀内)
ボテ茶 (松山) クコ 雑具(椀内)
もくだ (舘岡) 鳥足升麻 × ×
振茶 (中曽司) 煎茶(粉) × 雑穀(椀内)
フイ茶 (鹿児島、徳之島) 番茶 × ×
ブクブク茶(沖縄) サンピン茶他 穀類(椀内)
やこめ 番茶 × × × 穀類(椀内)
茶の湯 抹茶 × 甘味嗜好(椀外)
尻振り茶 番茶 × × × × 穀類(椀内)
紀州茶粥(和歌山) 番茶 × × × × 穀類(椀内)
碁石茶粥(徳島) 碁石茶 × × × 穀類(椀内)
  1. 第2回国際茶花シンポジウム抄録集、pp.3-5
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