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Effect of eating o-cha

Tea leaves contain aqueous components that dissolve in water and non-aqueous components (table1). Aqueous components are catechin, caffeine, vitamin C, theaine, and r-amono butyric acid, which have various effects on human. Non-aqueous components such as B-carotene, vitamin E, and dietary fiber are thrown away when O–CHA is drunk although much of them are contained in tea leaves. Tea have been eaten as well as drunk in the past. Matcha, powder green tea, has been drunk to benefit all the components of tea. As functions of tea components are shown (table1), there has been a tendency to utilize all the components without wasting them. B-carotene and vitamin E are anti-oxidative vitamins that are solvable in lipid. They act as vitamin A and E when taken inward, showing anti-tumor and aging prevention effects. Dietary fiber has an effect on bowel modulating activity, which prevents cancer in colon. You might take too much calories by having nuts and grease that contain a lot of vitamin E, but you can take it from tea leaves with much lower calories. The experiments have proved that the non-aqueous components are utilized inward if grind tea leaves are taken inward. About half of VA and VE that a Japanese person need to take can be taken if 1g of powdered Sencha is taken a day. Besides the fragrance, taste, color and nutrition, utilizing the anti-odor and anti-oxidative effects into foods, which can be added to keeping producing meat and eggs with higher quality, is being tried. Also there are groups that are studying recipes using green tea leaves, one of which is O-CHA cooking club (president, professor Shoji Omori). Several green tea products are in market after processed for easier use. There also are small grinders in the market to make powered tea at home.

(Yoshiyuki Nakamura)