Monday, October 15, 2012

The TEA BASICS class at 

ACC is coming 

up fast! 

If you had planned to attend and have not yet signed up, please do so soon. There is much preparation to be done for the course (yes, there are parting gifts ....) and I need to know for how many people.

The class is called Tea Basics (no. 10060) and will be held at ACC on Wednesday, October 24 (yes ... that's NEXT WEDNESDAY!) from 6pm-8pm. This is a one-time session (we're testing the waters you know) and cost is $35.00 ($25.00 tuition and $10.00 fee)

If you'd like to register, please call ACC Continuing Education at 
(518) 743-2238 ... but do it soon!

Hope to see you there! 

Let me be your TEAcher!

Saturday, October 06, 2012

Considering a gift for the tea lover in your life?

Or are you the tea lover wondering what to wish for?

Have you considered a Tea-of-the-Month plan from SensibiliTeas?
Here's how it works ...
A Tea-Of-The-Month plan is a subscription plan that provides the tea lover with 4 ounces of tea each month for a period of 3 months, 6 months or a year. The plan begins with a teapot with filter (or 1-cup in

fuser) and a teaspoon for measuring a perfect cup of tea. (Other awesome equipment can be substituted at a modified price) You can choose a plan for the recipient, or the recipient can choose the plan later.

There are several plans from which to choose:
Black teas (we choose the black teas for you)
Green teas (we choose the green teas for you)
White Teas (up to 6 months only-- we choose the teas)
Oolong teas (we choose the oolong teas for you)
Herbal Tisanes -- recipient can choose the monthly selection
The Flavorful Plan -- Recipient can choose from flavored, black teas, flavored green teas, herbal tisanes or rooibos (our most popular plan)
World Explorer Plan -- each month features teas from a different country
Beginner Plan -- A different type of tea is featured each month.
Surprise Plan -- we choose the teas, and our guess is honestly as good as yours. Not always 4oz of tea, but still of equal value when much higher priced teas are sent.

Shipping is included.
If your tea lover is already tricked out with tea making equipment, we can just expand the plan to include and extra month of tea.

It's the gift they'll look forward to every month! Call, email or visit to order!
(518) 824-1290 or (800) 449-9888, or, or visit us at The Shirt Factory on the corner of Lawrence and Cooper Streets in Glens Falls NY Tuesday - Friday 11am-5pm, Saturday 10am-5pm.

3 months = $65.00 (less than $22 per month)
6 months = $105.00 (Less than $18 per month)
12 months = $175.00 (less than $15 per month)

Friday, October 05, 2012

Bolthouse Farms Vanilla Chai Tea ... can we talk?

``Heart Healthy"
``Perfectly Protein"
"Lactose and Dairy Free"

``FEEL GOOD about what's in this bottle"
``Our Vanilla Chai Tea is a smooth blend of brewed green tea, heart healthy soy portein, chai spices and a hint of vanilla flavor -- it's as nutritious as it is delicious"
``7g Soy protein per serving ..."

Let's take a peek at the ingredients, shall we?
INGREDIENTS: Soymilk from concentrate (water, soymilk concentrate), cane sugar, soy protein isolate, natural flavor, acacia gum, calcium (tricalcium phosphate) carrageenan, salt, vitamin C (ascorbic acid) Magnesium (magnesium oxide), green tea (water, green tea extract, vitamin B6 (pyridozine HCL), zinc (zinc sulfate), iron (ferrous lactate, vitamin B12 (cyanocobalamin)

So tea is the 11th ingredient in the ``Vanilla Chai Tea" ? That's not cool.
Let's look at the nutrition facts.  8oz. serving ... that's 1 measuring cup.

1 teaspoon of sugar is about 4 grams.... so 26 grams means 6.5 teaspoons of sugar in a 1 cup serving.
But it's cane sugar, so it's okay, right?
No ... that much sugar is bad for anyone at anytime.
Especially given that tea has no calories at all.
Smooth tasting, sure ... but unless it's cheesecake, I don't need that much sugar... EVER!

I'll make my own, thanks.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

SensibiliTeas -- a whole lotta shakin' going on!

Big changes at SensibiliTeas!

First, we're moving, but we aren't going far.

In the near future, perhaps by late autumn or early winter, SensibiliTeas will be moving into the space previously occupied by The Acupuncture Studio, near the Lawrence Street entrance of the Shirt Factory. The shop will still be easily accessed through the loading dock/gallery entrance, or just a longer walk from the Cooper Street entrances. It will take a while to renovate the space, so I can't say when this will happen ... only that it will happen. In the meantime, we will continue to operate out of the space we've been in for 6+ years, in the first floor south building hallway, between JAG Gallery and Moss and Friends. Maybe I"ll be brave and post pictures of the new space as it evolves (as if I have time, right?)

I'm excited to announce that just down the hall from the new SensibiliTeas space, Dickinson's Delights will be moving into one of the suites to set up a retail space for their amazing baked goods and other treats. Jon and Tamberlyn Dickinson have been in business for 7+ years (I think) and can be found at many of the area farmer's markets. Jon is the guy making the crêpes!

We are so happy to have them on board!

And finally ... all the new employees ...  Luke and Linnell may peek their heads in from time to time (always a blessing!), but they have college ambitions to follow, Luke at SUNY Oneonta and Linnell at Temple University, and the commute was a bit much. Kris started a few months ago and is doing quite well. Chris started a week ago and is showing great promise and Kayla starts tomorrow. While you have always enjoyed an experienced staff, I beg your patience with the new staff while we get them the experience. They have a whole lot to learn ... this isn't a standard retail job!

This seems a good time to thank all of you for your loyalty and continuing support through what has been an incredibly difficult economy. Many of you have noticed the pricing changes, and sadly I've lost a few customers because of it, but I assure you the costs are directly relevant to the difference in costs between the day I opened the door in 2006 and now. It's been meaningful to develop so many lovely friendships over these years, and I have been blessed to be a surviving business. It doesn't happen without you, so for what it's worth.


Tuesday, June 05, 2012


Tuesdays are for white tea descriptions...


An exquisite white tea creation from Makaibari Estate in Darjeeling, India—the world’s first certified biodynamic tea estate. With one sip, you’ll understand why Silver Tips often commands the highest top price at tea industry auctions every year. Suggestions of apricots, sultanas, wooded glens, and flowers give way to a mouthwatering close. Biodynamic, organic, fair trade and single estate. $9.00 an ounce/10 servings per ounce/.90 a serving.

Hey Donnalynn, why so expensive? I mean ... I can get my Makaibari Green tea from the same estate for just $3.00 an ounce...

Supply and demand, really ... Most of the tea grown on the Makaibari estate is allocated to black tea production --- delightful Darjeeling selections. The next highest allocation is to the Makaibari Green tea you love. Very little of the tea is allocated to the production of this white tea, known as Silver Tips Imperial. The less there is, the higher price it demands. Actually, if you do a websearch for this tea, you'll likely find I've offered it here at the very best price. You'll likely also find not there are not many sources for it.

$9.00 an ounce ... I think you're worth it... don't you?

Biodynamic ... what's that?  Well, here I'm going to share a wiki link that explains it pretty well ... my apologies for taking the cheap way out... a little short on time today...

Friday, May 25, 2012

Tea drinkers in studies see cardiovascular benefits

23 May 2012By World Tea News
Two independent studies suggest flavonoids and polyphenols found in tea may aid in the prevention of heart disease.
Consumption of the flavonoid rutin in foods and tea could help to prevent the formation of blood clots, according to researchers at the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center at Harvard Medical School.
The report published in the Journal of Clinical Investigation reveals that the compound commonly found in fruits and vegetables could have promise in blocking the formation of blood clots in an animal model of clotting (thrombosis)
“Rutin proved to be the most potently anti-thrombic compound that we ever tested in this model,” said lead researcher Robert Flaumenhaft. In particular, he revealed that rutin was shown to inhibit both platelet accumulation and fibrin generation during clot formation.
Clots occur in both arteries and veins, he explained. Arteries are platelet-rich while those in veins are fibrin-rich. This discovery suggests that a single agent can treat and prevent both types of clots,” he said. The researcher recommended clinical trials.
Results show rutin may prove helpful in the prevention and treatment of stroke, heart attack, pulmonary embolism and deep vein thrombosis.
A different study to examine the impact of tea drinking on blood cholesterol levels found black tea intake improves lipid profile and antioxidant status of a random population.
In a paper published in the Journal of Preventative Medicine, researchers studied the effect of black tea on risk factors of cardiovascular disease in a normal population.
In a report included in the American Botanical Council’s HerbClip “the moderate intake of black tea improved the plasma levels of some of the cardiovascular disease risk factors and total antioxidant capacity.”
"Although the underlying biological mechanisms for these effects and the exact role of phenolics warrant an extensive study, tea may provide an important source of dietary antioxidants in many individuals," conclude the authors.
They conducted a randomized, controlled, parallel clinical trial to determine the effects of black tea consumption on fasting serum glucose, total cholesterol (TC), triglycerides (TGs), high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol, and low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol, as well as the antioxidant status in a normal population in the Republic of Mauritius.
Participants were given three 200mL servings of tea daily with no additives for 12 weeks, then drank hot water to wash out their systems. Black tea was from the Mauritius Corson Tea Estate Co. was carefully analyzed to determine the concentration of flavonoids.
Subjects tested after 12 weeks of tea drinking showed significantly increased HDL (good) cholesterol levels: 17% in the men and 24% in the women.
A significant increase in antioxidant activity was in tea-treated men (440% FRAP) and tea-treated women (386% FRAP) at week 12, followed by a significant increase in the men during the washout. The tea’s antioxidant effect was also measured in TEAC values which were slightly reduced by tea intake in the men and women at week 12.
Tea also appears to have a beneficial impact on glycemic levels. The mean fasting blood glucose level at baseline was 134 ± 66 mg/dL for the men and 111 ± 38 mg/dL for the women. At 12 weeks, those levels dropped significantly for the men (30.2%) and for the women (14.8%). Non-significant decreases were observed in the control groups.
The population of Mauritius has an unusually high (23.6%) incidence of diabetes compared to populations worldwide. The authors note that the baseline glycemic levels in both the control and test groups were higher than the international standard values. Examining the results of this trial, the authors conclude that "an antihyperglycemic effect of black tea can therefore be anticipated."

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Cinnamon & Honey - Interesting / Simple / Why Not?

I'll bet the drug companies won't like this one getting out. First of all, never boil honey or put it in a microwave. This will kill the enzymes in the honey. It is found that a mixture of honey and Cinnamon cures most diseases. Honey is produced in most of the countries of the world. Scientists of today also accept honey as a 'Ram Ban' (very effective) medicine for all kinds of diseases. Honey can be used without side effects for any kind of disease, even diabetics. Dr. Oz talks about it all the time...
HEART DISEASES: Make a paste of honey and cinnamon powder, apply it on bread instead of jelly and jam and eat it regularly for breakfast. It reduces the cholesterol in the arteries and saves the patient from heart attacks. Those who have already had an attack, daily use could stop the next one. In America and Canada, various nursing homes have treated patients successfully, finding that as one ages the arteries and veins lose their flexibility and get clogged; honey and cinnamon revitalize the arteries and the veins.
ARTHRITIS: Arthritis patients may take daily (morning and night) one cup of hot water with two tablespoon of honey and one small tbs of cinnamon powder. When taken regularly even chronic arthritis can be cured. In a recent research conducted at the Copenhagen University, it was found that when the doctors treated their patients with a mixture of one tablespoon Honey and half teaspoon Cinnamon powder before breakfast, they found that within a week (out of the 200 people so treated) practically 73 patients were totally relieved of pain -- and within a month, most all the patients who could not walk or move because of arthritis now started walking without pain.
BLADDER INFECTIONS: Take two tablespoons of cinnamon powder and one teaspoon of honey in a glass of lukewarm water and drink it. It destroys the germs in the bladder.
CHOLESTEROL: Two tablespoons of honey and three teaspoons of Cinnamon Powder mixed in 16 ounces of tea water were found to reduce the level of cholesterol in the blood by 10 percent within two hours. As mentioned for arthritic patients, when taken three times a day, any chronic cholesterol is cured.
COLDS: Those suffering from common or severe colds should take one tablespoon lukewarm honey with 1/4 spoon cinnamon powder daily for three days. This process will cure most chronic cough, cold, and, clear the sinuses.
UPSET STOMACH: Honey taken with cinnamon powder cures stomach ache and also clears stomach ulcers from its root.
GAS: According to the studies done in India and Japan, it is revealed that when Honey is taken with cinnamon powder the stomach is relieved of gas.
IMMUNE SYSTEM: Daily use of honey and cinnamon powder strengthens the immune system and protects the body from bacterial and viral attacks. Scientists have found that honey has various vitamins and iron in large amounts. Constant use of Honey strengthens the white blood corpuscles (where DNA is contained).
INDIGESTION: Cinnamon powder sprinkled on two tablespoons of honey taken before food is eaten relieves acidity and aids digestion.
INFLUENZA: A scientist in Spain has proved that honey contains a natural 'Ingredient', which kills the influenza germs and saves the patient from flu.
LONGEVITY: Tea made with honey and cinnamon powder, when taken regularly, arrests the ravages of old age. Use four teaspoons of honey, one teaspoon of cinnamon powder, and three cups of water and boil to make a tea. Drink 1/4 cup, three to four times a day. It keeps the skin fresh and soft and arrests old age. Life spans increase and even a 100 year old will start performing the chores of a 20-year-old.
RASPY OR SORE THROAT: When throat has a tickle or is raspy, take one tablespoon of honey and sip until gone. Repeat every three hours until throat is without symptoms.
PIMPLES: Three tablespoons of honey and one teaspoon of cinnamon powder paste. Apply this paste on the pimples before sleeping and wash it off the next morning with warm water. When done daily for two weeks, it removes all pimples from the root.
SKIN INFECTIONS: Applying honey and cinnamon powder in equal parts on the affected parts cures eczema, ringworm and all types of skin infections.
WEIGHT LOSS: Daily in the morning one half hour before breakfast and on an empty stomach, and at night before sleeping, drink honey and cinnamon powder boiled in one cup of water. When taken regularly, it reduces the weight of even the most obese person. Also, drinking this mixture regularly does not allow the fat to accumulate in the body even though the person may eat a high calorie diet.
CANCER: Recent research in Japan and Australia has revealed that advanced cancer of the stomach and bones have been cured successfully. Patients suffering from these kinds of cancer should daily take one tablespoon of honey with one teaspoon of cinnamon powder three times a day for one month?
FATIGUE: Recent studies have shown that the sugar content of honey is more helpful rather than being detrimental to the strength of the body. Senior citizens who take honey and cinnamon powder in equal parts are more alert and flexible. Dr. Milton, who has done research, says that a half tablespoon of honey taken in a glass of water and sprinkled with cinnamon powder, even when the vitality of the body starts to decrease, when taken daily in the afternoon at about 3:00 P.M., the vitality of the body increases within a week.
TOOTHACHE: Make a paste of one teaspoon of cinnamon powder and five teaspoons of honey and apply on the aching tooth. This may be applied three times a day until the tooth stops aching.
BAD BREATH: People of South America, gargle with one teaspoon of honey and cinnamon powder mixed in hot water first thing in the morning so their breath stays fresh throughout the day.
HEARING LOSS: Daily morning and night honey and cinnamon powder, taken in equal parts restore hearing. 
And if you suffer from pollen allergies, using local honey may help. There's just enough pollen in the honey to trigger your immune system to fight your allergies!
At SensibiliTeas, we sell local honey and organic cinnamon. Once again, proud to be your one stop shop.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Green Pekoe Adirondack Brined Pork Loins

Serving Size: 6 

You will need:

2 quarts cold water 
2/3 cup sea salt 
½ cup maple syrup (real and local if possible, please) 
2 cups apple cider real and local if possible please) 
1 tablespoon peppercorns 
2 tablespoons Green Pekoe tea
4-6 pound pork loin, or 4 1lb pork tenderloins, or 6 center cut pork chops cut 1 ¼” – 1 ½” thick 
2 tablespoons cooking oil


1) Trim any excess external fat from the meat. 
2) Bring water, cider, salt, syrup & peppercorns to just below a boil. (Steam should be slow and lazy) Make sure salt is dissolved. 
3) Remove from heat and add tea. Cool solution, uncovered, to room temp. 
4) Submerge pork loin in the brine in a large glass bowl or small crock. Weigh the meat down by placing an object (like a heavy plate) on top so that the meat remains submerged in the solution. Refrigerate overnight if the loin, 6-8 hours if using tenderloins, 4-6 hours if using chops. Bone-in pork may take a day longer. 
5) Remove pork from solution & rinse &  pat dry. To test flavor of brined pork, cut a small piece off the meat, pat it dry and pan-fry it. If the meat is sufficiently flavorful, remove it from the brine, let it come to room temperature, sprinkle with paprika and grill. If not, leave it in the brine and test again later. Discard solution. 
6) Staying inside? Brown pork on all sides in vegetable oil. Sprinkle all sides with paprika and place in a 350◦F oven for approximately 1 hour. Ovens vary, so check doneness by making a small cut in pork. No pink! Remove pork from oven & tent in foil for about 10 minutes.

Friday, May 18, 2012

Golden Jasmine Butterfly ... yummm...

Mmmmm... mmmmm ... what's in your cup tonight...

Tonight I'm enjoying Golden Jasmine Butterfly. This rare reserve tea is absolutely our finest jasmine tea. It begins with an exceptional hand-picked organic white tea from the Fujian region of China, and is then layered with fresh jasmine petals night after night until the scent and flavor are indescribably deep and sweet. The tea is then beautifully hand-bound into the shape of tiny, delicate. Sheer luxury in a cup.

Yes, it's expensive ... but let's put it into perspective. No one thinks twice about paying $10.50 for a great bottle of wine, so why would anyone balk at $10.50 for an ounce of organic handpicked, hand-processed, hand-tied tea from the other side of the world?

Even better ... a quarter-pounder, large fries and coke ...  gotta be at least $6 ... and gone in a matter of minutes.... but $10.50 is to expensive for about 30 cups of the best stuff on earth?

This is great with my Chinese food (broccoli, snow peas, green beans with rice) and my new happy music ... I feel a bubble bath coming on ...

You know what ... I should make some in the shop for you to try ... maybe I'll do that tomorrow. That makes for a happy day for me at the shop tomorrow!  Awesome music, luxurious tea and anticipated visits from at least three beautful friends.  Nice way to start a weekend!

So what's in your cup?

Friday, April 27, 2012 gets a new look

Good morning ...
Well, the good folks at blogger changed their way of doing things I'm sure I'll adjust. However, the emailed version of the blog yesterday was really icky looking.

The problem has always been a blog with a black background and an email with a white background... how to best format the text... 
Well, I've alleviated the problem (I hope) by cleaning up the blog a little and giving it a fresher look. Let me know what you think!

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Brain Waves Indicate Tea Creates `Relaxed Alertness'

Brain Waves Indicate Tea Creates ‘Relaxed Alertness’
26 Apr 2012
By World Tea News

Brain scans show that compared to water, the L-theanine in tea has a very pronounced calming effect (indicated by red, alpha waves)

Australian researchers at the Center for Human Psychopharmacology measuring brain waves of volunteers found the EGCG in tea has a calming effect producing “relaxed alertness.”

Lead researcher Andrew Scholey sought to discover whether the flavonoid epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) modulates brain activity and self-reported mood in a double-blind, placebo controlled crossover study.

Participants completed baseline assessments of cognitive and cardiovascular functioning, mood and a resting state electroencephalogram (EEG) before and two hours after receiving 300 mg EGCG or matched placebo, according to Scholey.

He writes that “EGCG administration was associated with a significant overall increase in alpha, beta and theta activity, also reflected in overall EEG activity, more dominant in midline frontal and central regions, specifically in the frontal gyrus and medial frontal gyrus. In comparison to placebo the EGCG treatment also increased self-rated calmness and reduced self rated stress. “

“This is in keeping with the widespread consumption of green tea for its purported relaxing/refreshing properties,” he concludes.

EGCG is one of the key flavonoid phytonutrients found in the Camellia sinensis, the plant from which green, white, black, and oolong teas are made, writes Dr. Michael Greger who has written about similar findings with the active ingredient L-Theanine.

Using an electroencephalogram, researchers were able to anatomically match changes in brain wave activity to the feelings of a relaxed alertness that participants reported when consuming the tea phytonutrients, compared to a double-blinded placebo, he writes.

In a report on his website, Care2Make a Difference ( Dr.  Greger an author, physician and founder of the American College of Lifestyle Medicine, describes in a video how the introduction of L-theanine (50 mg) has a similar pronounced effecting on brain wave activity (pictured here).

The phytonutrient theanine “offers another neurological basis for humanity’s love affair with tea,” writes Dr. Greger. “Relaxed and aware is where we want to be. How do we get there? Drink tea,” he says.

There are benefits to tea drinking beyond just making us feel good, such as extending our lifespan.

This may explain the so-called Asian Paradox, why people living in Asia have lower heart disease and lung cancer rates despite their high level of smoking.

“How many cups a day of green tea are associated with increased longevity, though?” he asks.


Sources: Appetite, Acute Neurocognitive Effects of Epigallocatechin Gallate

Abstract: Acute neurocognitive effects of epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG).
Scholey A, Downey LA, Ciorciari J, Pipingas A, Nolidin K, Finn M, Wines M, Catchlove S, Terrens A, Barlow E, Gordon L, Stough C.

Centre for Human Psychopharmacology, Swinburne University, Melbourne, Vic. 3122, Australia

Monday, April 16, 2012

Good morning folks! Some major changes going on at SensibiliTeas these days ...

Over the next month or so, I will be working on modifying the SensibiliTeas pricing structure. This will include a tiny price increase. I figure it's time, in that I haven't increased prices since opening on 04/25/2006 (that's right! SensibiliTeas birthday is just around the corner!) during a time when the world has seen skyrocketing shipping charges, global climatic changes and meterological problems and significant global unrest ... all things that contribute to higher tea prices.

Anyway ... I'm doing it in such a way that though some will pay a little more, some people may even benefit! Instead of offering firm price breaks at 4oz, 8oz and 1lb, there will be a 10% discount for purchases of 4-7 oz of tea, 8-15 oz of tea will see a 15% discount, and those purchasing 16oz or more will see a 25% discount.

Here's a price comparison:
Lime Ginger Green Rooibos
1 oz. = $3.00 (.30 per cup)
4 oz. = 10.00 (.20-.25 per cup)
8 oz = 19.00 (.19-.24 per cup)
16oz = 32.00 (.16-.17 per cup)

Coming :
1oz = $3.00 (about .30 per cup)
4oz = 12.00-1.20 = 10.80 (.22-.27 per cup)
8oz = 24.00-4.80 = 20.40 (.20-.26 per cup)
16oz =48.00-12.00=36.00 (.18 per cup)

As well, we are discontinuing the sample size. The price of the packaging has become far too expensive, so minimum prices begin at 1oz. Hope you understand.

While researching more affordable packaging, we have found the need to change our packaging. Most tea purchases will now be packaged in rice paper bags. All of them will be light green, so it will be difficult for you to come into the shop and tell us you need a gold bag of tea when we no longer have them. If you are unsure how much tea you usually, please bring your old bag with you, and we'll help you figure it out. I expect the packaging changes to happen sometime in the coming week.

Even though prices are going up a little, many people will benefit!
The price breaks will no longer be limited to the purchase of a single kind of tea, but will apply to your entire purchase. So where
currently you'd buy
Apricot Allure 1oz = $3.00
Lemon Tulsi 1oz. = $3.00
Assam 1947 1oz. = $3.00
Mayan Chai 1oz. = $3.00

And your bill would be $12.00.
With the pricing structure change you'd get at 10% discount and pay $10.80!

Changing prices on 600+ different teas is a time consuming task -- even more so when considering how carefully it must be done to make sure the bookkeeping system, the website and the new brochure we're working on all say the same, so I'm begging for your patience as we move through this crazy project.

All in all, we promise to keep our prices lower and practices more fair than our mall-residing competitors. ;0)

Thanks for your continued loyaltea!


Friday, April 06, 2012

Female Tea Drinkers Appear to Have Fewer Bouts of Gastric Cancer

Tea Drinkers Appear to Have Fewer Bouts of Gastric Cancer
04 Apr 2012
By World Tea News

TOKYO, Japan

Researchers at the National Cancer Center in Tokyo report that women who drank five or more cups of tea a day were 21 percent less likely to be diagnosed with gastric cancer.

There were is no similar association observe for men.

The study is compiled from results of eight separate research papers and three case-controlled studies as analyzed by the Shizuka Sasazuki research team and published in the Japanese Journal of Clinical Oncology.

Gastric or stomach cancer has a high mortality rate, killing 800,000 people worldwide each year. This disease most often occurs in men and women aged 40 or older.

Authors of this study said previous epidemiological studies resulted in inconsistent conclusions and they would like to combine all data from quality studies to see if there is an inverse association between drinking green tea and risk of gastric cancer in men and women.

In a report on the findings by David Liu, Ph.D. for Food Consumer(, writes “the study results did not mean that drinking green tea would definitely reduce the risk of stomach cancer even though that possibility cannot be excluded either.”

“Case-control studies, however, consistently showed an inverse correlation between green tea consumption and stomach cancer risk. But the association was weak or moderate,” writes Liu.

“Although this study did not establish any inverse association between green tea intake and risk of gastric cancer in men, it did not exclude the possibility either. It is possible that some other factors outweighed the effect of green tea on the risk of gastric cancer, making the protective effect of green tea insignificant,” according to Liu.


Friday, March 30, 2012

Can Tea boost you chances of Pregnancy?

Tea May Boost Chances of Pregnancy
28 Mar 2012
By World Tea News

Researchers at Boston University studying women who were trying to conceive found that tea drinkers were 27 percent more likely to become pregnant.

The year-long study of 3,600 Danish women found that drinking two cups of tea a day boost the chance of pregnancy compared to a control group. It is the largest study of caffeine on pregnancy.

The study also revealed women who drank two cola-style carbonated beverages daily were 20 percent less likely to become pregnant.

The findings suggest that switching from cola to tea could significantly enhance the chances of pregnancy.

Professor Elizabeth Hatch said the discovery is secondary to the purpose of the study which was designed to determine whether caffeine intake affected the chances of pregnancy.

Findings from the study revealed drinking coffee doesn’t affect your chance of getting pregnant.

She cautioned that previous studies strongly suggest that women who are trying to get pregnant and those expecting a child should avoid caffeine. The results of previous research were not conclusive.

In this study Hatch and her colleagues monitored each volunteer for a year. Danish women of average 28 years of age were chosen for the research because every Danish citizen is given a civil registration number at birth, allowing health officials to recruit and then screen individuals through the internet.

“We don’t know how they took the tea or if they added milk or lemon, but they had this increased chance of getting pregnant over women who did not drink tea at all,” Professor Hatch reported. “It may be linked to caffeine but clearly there may be other factors linked with the women’s lifestyle or there may be beneficial properties in tea itself,” she said.

The researcher cautioned though that although tea increased chances of having a baby, it was not a miracle cure that guaranteed pregnancy.

“I think drinking two or three cups of tea a day for anyone wishing to get pregnant will be fine. I would love to say tea is a miracle cure to get pregnant but that is not realistic. There may be other factors. The tea drinkers tended to be older women and there may be something else in their diet or lifestyle that helped.”

Tea contains a lot of antioxidants “which are very good for male and female fertility,” according to Maha Ragunath, consultant in reproductive medicine at the Care Fertility Centre in Nottingham, U.K. “But I don't think women trying for a baby should now drink lots of tea, it's everything in moderation."

According to reports on the Growing Your Baby website, “researchers found that green tea, which is believed to boost pregnancy chances, did not have any additional affects and increased conception chances in the same way as any other tea.”

The team is now trying to find further links between tea consumption and pregnancy and if it affects baby’s health, birth size, pregnancy complications and chances of miscarriage.

Source: Growing Your Baby, Deccan Chronicle

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Green Tea Reduces Lung Cancer Risk

As reported by World Tea News March 7 2012

Pathologists examining a large sample of lung cancer patients in four separate studies in Taiwan, the Czech Republic and the United States report significant protection from drinking tea.

In one Taiwan study cancer cells in patients consuming at least one cup of green tea daily failed to form layers characteristic of abnormal cells. A second, four-year study compared 170 cancer patients with 340 healthy controls to better understand and isolate the impact of smoking habits, genetic factors and green tea consumption.

The study, published in the medical journal Hematology Oncology concluded that tea significantly decreases a person’s risk for lung cancer.

In a separate report Kaiser Permanente researchers tracked 126,293 people who provided baseline data from 1978 to 1985 and followed them until 2008 to determine their risk for developing lung cancer in relation to cigarette smoking, alcohol consumption, gender, ethnicity, BMI, and level of education.

They found individuals who consume high amounts of black tea and fruit, as well as those with higher BMIs, have a lower risk of developing lung cancer, while those who consume more than three alcoholic drinks per day have an increased risk of developing the disease, according to three separate studies presented at CHEST 2011, the 77th annual meeting of the American College of Chest Physicians (ACCP).

The Czech study found that consumption of black tea had a protective effect on nonsmoking women, while fruit had a protective effect for both men and women.

In the green tea study patients with lung cancer exhibited a higher proportion of smoking, green tea consumption of less than one cup per day, exposure to cooking fumes and family history of lung cancer than controls, according to the study results. An elevated risk was observed in smokers who never drank green tea, as compared with smokers who drank more than one cup of green tea per day.

Doctors the Changhwa Christian Hospital in Taiwan catalogued five different variations of lung cancer. Tea was offered in quantities from 30 to 50 ml to total 100 to 120 ml per day.

“Our study suggests a protective effect of green tea on lung cancer elicited by cigarette smoking,” the researchers said. “Green tea drinkers have a reduced risk of lung cancer. Heavy smokers have a higher risk of lung cancer. This result may indicate that smoking-induced pulmonary carcinogenesis may be modulated by green tea consumption and the growth factor environment.”

Finally, a second Taiwanese study in 2010 examined the smoking and tea drinking habits of more than 500 people, and found that the risk of lung cancer was 5 times higher in those who did not drink green tea. Among smokers, the risk was 12 times higher.

A new study shows for the first time how EGCG in green tea might work to suppress lung cancer by raising levels of a molecule called mi-R210 inside lung cancer cells. Cells with higher levels of mi-R210 multiplied more slowly than lung cancer cells with lower levels, the study showed. In addition, cells with high mi-R210 levels lost the ability to grow on top of each other, a hallmark of cancer cells.

The study was published in the September issue of the journal Carcinogenesis.

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Pu Erh -- A tea worth waiting for

Dr. Oz mentioned Pu Erh tea on a broadcast this past week... This made it a very busy Pu Erh week in the shop ... So what is Pu Erh?

Pu Erh (pronounced "POO-ar" or POO-Er... POO-AIR is okay too) comes from Yunnan province in China, which is considered to be the birthplace of tea, and traditionally is harvested from ancient wild trees rather than hip-high bushes. Unlike other varieties of tea, it is harvested throughout the year with no particular season as the trees do not require the dormant period required by Camelia sinensis bushes. The processing of Pu Erh is much like that of black tea, but with a few differences. The tea is only partially fired, allowing some moisture to remain in the leaves. The leaves are then piled or sometimes pressed into a cake form. The natural bacterium on the leaves creates a reaction similar to that of a compost pile. The tea is then aged in special underground rooms or caves, adding to its unique earthy character.

Pu Erh is the only tea that is intentionally aged. This aging process causes the tea to take on an earthy aroma. The taste is often different than the aroma. Typically, the longer the tea is aged, the smoother its flavor. Many give this tea credit for restoring and maintaining good health.

Since the time of the Tang Dynasty, Chinese have drunk this tea after rich meals to ``cut the grease’’. In the 1970's Chinese doctors in Kunming reported clinical experiments in which drinking pu erh was shown to lower cholesterol levels in the blood stream. French researchers at St. Antoine Hospital in Paris duplicated these results with 500 hyperlipidemia patients (individuals with advanced cholesterol conditions) and found that three cups of Pu Erh a day for a month brought lipids down 25 percent in those drinking Pu Erh, while those drinking other teas showed no significant change. These tests further showed Pu Erh performed at least as well as the most advanced medicine for the purpose, without the drug's side effects.

It has since been shown to help reduce body weight by increasing the metabolism. Many report that drinking it after meals relieves any overstuffed feelings and aids digestion. A in-shop 2 week study at SensibiliTeas showed that 3 cups a day with no other changes to diet or lifestyle, resulted in a slow, steady weight loss, and an average cholesterol of 60 points. Participants also saw a reduction in C-reactive protein levels. (participants were required to have a physical before and after the study)

  • Aids digestion
  • May help reduce cholesterol levels
  • May assist with weight loss efforts
  • May reduce blood alcohol levels
  • May increase metabolism
  • May reduce C-reactive protein levels
Pu Erh is available in various forms at SensibiliTeas. I have a few Pu Erh cakes, but our best seller is Immortal Nectar ... a Pu Erh harvested in 1997. I also have it in other loose leaf variets, including a Scottish Caramel Toffee Pu Erh and a Strudel Pu Erh (Pu Erh with cinnamon, vanilla & mint) the form of Tuo Cha (handformed into the shape of a tiny birds nest) , or loose but packed into mandarin oranges.

Pu Erh, due to its aging, is different than any other tea you'll ever drink. It's bold but never bitter. It's earthy, but smooth. It's fabulous with spicy food, and a hit with those trying to switch to tea from coffee. Proven to do all it's advertised to do ... it's certainly worth a try!

Saturday, February 25, 2012

22 February 2012
Source: The Sunday (London) Times

As few as three cups of black tea a day will cut cholesterol, stabilize blood sugar and reduce chances of a heart attack.

The research backing these claims appeared in the journal Nutrition Bulletin. A 12-week study of 87 volunteers, financed by the industry backed Tea Advisory Panel (TAP), showed three cups of tea a day led to a significant improvement in various cardiovascular risk factors.

Researchers found two or more cups protect against type 2 diabetes. Results were similar, with or without milk.

The benefits are attributed to the 150- to 200-mg of flavonoids in tea are equivalent to five portions of vegetables and may be the best delivery of antioxidants.

Nutritionist Dr. Carrie Ruxton, who co-authored the review reports tea’s active ingredients control inflammation, reduce excess blood clotting, promote blood vessel function and reduce clogging in arteries.

“There is far more to the nation's favorite drink than we realize,” reports Ruxton. “With its antioxidant flavonoids, black tea packs a powerful punch with many health benefits particularly for the heart. And recent studies show that the flavonoids work their magic whether or not we choose to add milk.”

“Chronic conditions such as heart disease, stroke and diabetes are associated with inflammatory processes and the presence of excessive pro-oxidant free radicals in the body,” according to TAP’s Dr. Tim Bond, “The proven antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects of black tea flavonoids may therefore be responsible for the positive health effects of black tea.”

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Away for a while ...

Hiatus from blog updates for now. Cut my finger pretty bad and typing is difficult. All blooming teas are on sale 50% off (reg. $3.00/today $1.50) All ``love teas'' 50% off -- Valentine, Forget-Me-Not Rooibos, Essence D'amour, Rose-Kissed Jasmine, Kashmiri Rose, Violet Rose, Amore ... sale runs through Tuesday.

Shop will be open Tuesday - Friday 11am-5pm and Saturday 10am-5pm regardless of my silly injury.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Saturday's Rooibos -- Lime Ginger Green Rooibos

Lime Ginger Green Rooibos

The dry and pleasant flavor of West Indian Lime gives our Lime Ginger Green Rooibos a unique, zesty citrus flavor swirled with notes of ginger. The unique flavor of this rare lime variety is thirst-quenching and known to enhance circulation and immunity. Get the juices flowing with this stimulating yet caffeine-free blend of antioxidant-rich and longevity-enhancing botanicals.

Friday, February 10, 2012

Friday's Flavored tea -- Açaí Berry Black

No website link to this one because it has just arrived in the shop!
Totally yummy hot or iced!
Premium India black tea plays beautifully with the rich flavor of the açaí berry.

Please note, this tea does not carry all the benefits of the açaí berry, and the tea simply carries a açaí berry flavor, but that doesn't mean it's not good for you!

Sorry for the short blog ... blog writer has writers cramp ... Hmm... do I have a tea for that? Checking ...

Thursday, February 09, 2012

Thursday's Herbal Tisane -- Honeybush

Honeybush (scientific name Cyclopia genistoides; Family: Fabaceae), or 'Heuningbos' in Afrikaans, is commonly used to make an infusion in the same manner as tea. It grows only in a small area in the southwest of South Africa and shares many similarities with rooibos.
The leaves of the bush are harvested, bruised, and left in the sun to oxidize. The resulting product is then boiled or steeped like tea to make a beverage that is enjoyed both hot and cold.
South Africa's Univeristy of the Free State found Honeybush an effective aid for constipation and a mild relaxant.
Honeybush contains virtually no caffeine (< 0.01% compared to 3.3% in ceylon tea), and is low in tannin (0.45% compared to 30% in ceylon tea). Tannin inhibits absorption of minerals.
Some of the active compounds present in Honeybush include:

Cinnamic acids
Non-Phenolic metabolites

  • Caffeine-free
  • Very low tannin levels
  • It is very soothing and calms the central nervous system
  • Eases constipation
  • Can be applied topically to skin irritations
  • Full of antioxidants to guard against free radical attack
  • Contains polyphenols that boost the immune system and to help reduce the degenerative effects of lifestyle diseases
  • Rich in minerals such as iron, potassium, calcium, copper, zinc, magnesium, manganese, and sodium
  • Contains isoflavones and coumestans that are known to prevent breast, prostate and uterine cancers, osteoporosis and high cholesterol
  • The flavones and isoflavones of Honeybush are similar to those of soy, and are similarly helpful when used in the treatment of menopausal symptoms.
  • Staves off hunger pangs
  • Reduces water retention
Downsides of Honeybush
None whatsoever as no negative side effects ever reported therefore Honeybush can be drunk freely. If Honeybush is brewed or boiled for longer than ten minutes, the antioxidant activity becomes much higher.

Wednesday, February 08, 2012

Wednesday's Oolong -- Da Hong Pao

Dà Hóng Páo 大红袍
Also known as "Big Red Robe", Dà Hóng Páo is an important Wuyi Oolong tea. According to legend, the mother of a Ming Dynasty emperor was cured of an illness by a certain tea, and that emperor sent great red robes to clothe the four bushes from which that tea originated. Three of these original bushes, growing on a rock on Mount Wuyi and reportedly dates back to the Song Dynasty, still survive today and are highly venerated. At one point, less than one kilogram of tea was harvested from these plants each year, of which a portion was retained by the Chinese government. In 2005, Da Hong Pao was known to sell for $30,000 kilogram (2.2 pounds)
Dà Hóng Páo is also one of the ten famous teas of China.

Not yet on the website, but available at the shop or via phone/email order, and at a much better price.

Da Hung Pao yields a golden yellow liquid that produces a pleasant long lasting aftertaste. Multiple infusions strongly encouraged.

Tuesday, February 07, 2012

Tuesday's White Tea -- Baihao Yinzhen

Baihao Yinzhen

白毫银针 Baihao Yinzhen is a white tea produced in Fujian Province in China. Amongst white teas this is one of the most expensive varieties and the most prized, as only top buds (leaf shoots) are used to produce the tea. Genuine Baihao Yinzhen is made from cultivars of the Da Bai (Large White) tea tree family. It is important to point out that there are other productions that look similar with downy leaf shoots but most are green teas, and as green teas, they taste differently and have a different biochemical potency than the genuine white tea Baihao Yinzhen.

Baihao Yinzhen is also considered to be one of the 10 famous teas of China.

This tea consists of uniform buds that have yet to open into leaves. The dry leaves have a silky texture from the fine white hairs (bai hao) that cover each shoot. The flavor is unmistakable and long lasting -- somewhat buttery or nutty. The aftertaste is astringent and satisfying. This is among the rarest and most spectacular of the white teas. Early in the spring, the individual leaf buds are picked and carefully handcrafted into this noteworthy tea. Infuse in a glass to enjoy the dance of the green leaf bud spears. Packed with antioxidants and low in caffeine - a very healthy tea. This of the highest grade and was grown near Fuding, in northern Fujian.

Monday, February 06, 2012

Monday's Green tea -- Longjng


Long ago, around 250 AD, in the Hangzhou region of the Zhejiang province of ancient China, a small town of poor tea farmers was feeling the tense grip of a great drought. With no rain, the leaves of the ancient tea plants began to yellow and fall to the cracking soil. Days went on -- no sign of rain. A town meeting was held to discuss their fate.

A Taoist priest selected a young man to climb to the top of a nearby mountain. They were told by their great-great grandparents that an old water dragon had once built a nest. Prayers to the dragon would deliver the town from sure ruin.

For three arduous days the young man climbed the precarious incline, sleeping only enough to shake off the drowsiness. Early on the fourth day he climb one more peak and then it saw it! He rushed to the top of the mountain, excited to have finally found the dragon! His town would now be saved! But alas, all he found was an collapsed ancient shrine made of rocks he had not seen before, and a dark empty well.

No dragon was to be found.

Overwhelmed by disbelief, the disheartened young man fell to the ground, kneeling to the shrine. All day and all night the young man lay upon the broken altar praying that his town be saved from the clutches of the drought. Soon he could keep his eyes open no longer. His dreams held the images of a great beast that swirled in the clouds, gathering them together and swirling them in a frenzy. The clouds change from a pillowy white to a dark, gloomy gray.

Soon he was awoken by the heavy drops that quickly soaked his clothes. He climbed to the highest peak and saw that both the mountain and his arid town below were drenched with a life-saving rain. He walked to the well beside the altar and noticed that it was now full, and he was delighted and mystified to see the different layers of water seeming to swirl round and around each other, like a dragon chasing his own tail.

He returned to his village to find that his prayers had saved the tea crops.

He never spoke to any of his fellow villagers of his dreams or what he witnessed on that high mountain peak, but every year he returned to the summit to pray at the broken altar. Every year he noticed, even as his bones grew brittle and his body weak, that the well next to the shrine never seemed to lose any water, and the swirling layers moved endlessly as the dragon endeavored to catch that tail.

As he became on old man, and he knew he time on the earth would be soon ending, he passed his story along to his many grandchildren. Annually, they would take the trip up the mountain to pay homage to the altar and the well with the water dragon, which became known as the Long Jing, or Dragon Well.

Other legends hold that:

1) When locals were digging the well found a stone shaped like a dragon and so they named the well Dragon Well. (kinda boring, huh?)

2) The well’s water is particularly dense. After rainstorms, the lighter rain water floats on the surface of the water and exhibits a twisting pattern which resembles the long and sinuous bodies of Chinese dragons. (a little more exciting, but I like the longer story better...)

And now ... about the tea!

First ... where is it grown

There are a lot of non-authentic Dragonwell teas available on today's market. Authentic Long Jing or Dragon Well tea comes from the area around West Lake in the Hangzhou regions of the Zhejiang province in southern China, an area held in the embrace of many hills and mountains peaks. This area is celebrated as ‘paradise on earth,’ a water wonderland, and a favorite imperial retreat. These high peaks keep cold air sweeping from north from reaching the tender and delicate Longjing tea growing in low-lying areas. So your Longjing green Chinese tea matured in a warm climate with a pleasant average temperature of about 61°F. The best Long Jing is from Lion Mount.

Throughout the year, the warm weather brings almost 5 feet of rainfall to the area. And almost 100% humidity makes clouds and fog that keep the burning sunlight from destroying the tender buds of the Longjing Chinese tea.

There is also a unique sandy soil on these hills. The white, porous earth is excellent at draining water and contains rich amounts of vital minerals like silicon and kalium for this special Chinese tea. Luxurious silks also come from this region, as the soil and climate are perfect for growing mulberry, the sole food of silkworms.

What does it look like?

It is easily recognized by it's The present-day flat shape of Dragon Well Tea is said to have something to do with Emperor Qianlong of the Qing Dynasty. Legend has it (Yes ... another legend!) that on one of his inspection tours to Hangzhou, Emperor Qianlong disguised himself as an ordinary man and came to the Hugong Temple at the foot of Shifeng Mountain near Dragon Well Village. An old monk served him some Dragon Well Tea of the West Lake. After drinking it, Emperor Qianlong instantly felt refreshed and fell in love with the sweet-smelling tea. “Sparrow-shaped leaves and subtle aromas, trickling down my throat like a pleasant breeze'' he noted in one of his poems. And so he personally picked some tea leaves and hurriedly placed inside his pocket to bring them back to the capital city.

After the long journey, the tender tea leaves were pressed flat but still greatly praised by the empress dowager. Emperor Qianlong therefore deemed the tea to be "imperial tea" and ordered the annual supply of tea leaves be baked flat exclusive enjoyment of the empress dowager. Or so the legend goes ... The flat shape of Dragon Well tea is generally believed to be influenced by Dafang tea of neighboring Anhui area in the late Ming (1368-1644) and early Qing Dynasty (1644-1911).

And how does it taste?

It is said to be known for its four wonders ... its emerald green color, aromatic flavor, sweet taste and beautiful appearance. It's taste is mellow, refreshing, slightly sweet and perhaps finishing a bit nutty. It has an exquisite lingering fragrance.

Sunday, February 05, 2012

Sunday's Black Tea -- American Breakfast

American Breakfast Tea

Origin: India, China, Sri Lanka and Taiwan

Traditionally, a breakfast tea is a hearty tea that will easily stand up to the addition of milk and sugar. This tea is a little more tantalizing. Made from tea leaves from India, China, Sri Lanka and Taiwan. It is full-bodied, malty and has a bright amber cup, but has a delicate flowery bouquet. Perfect as is or nicely complemented by the addition of milk, lemon or sugar, it's the perfect cup to start your day. So ... what do you want to do today? 212° 1 level teaspoon tea per 8 ounces water; steep for 3-5 minutes.

Saturday, February 04, 2012

Saturday's Rooibos -- Jamaican Flower Rooibos

Jamaican Flower Rooibos

Origin: South Africa

Description: Organic Hibiscus Sabdariffa is more commonly known as "Jamaica Flower". The tart and deep flavor of hibiscus blends well with the refreshing and healthful nature of rooibos. This blend has a deep red infusion with a strong and fruity body that finishes with complex notes of mango, passionfruit and island spices. Contains Organic/Fair Trade rooibos, hibiscus, honeybush, lemongrass, schizandra berries, rosehips, licorice root, orange peel, and flavors of passionfruit, orange, tangerine, mango and clove. Great hot or iced. 212° 1 level teaspoon tea per 8 ounces water; steep for 3-5 minutes. Organic and Fair Trade.

Friday, February 03, 2012

Friday's flavored black tea -- Cardamom


Origin: India

Description: A treat popular in Eastern Africa. Black tea artfully blended with cardamom creates a brew that is warmly sweet with lemony undertones. An excellent choice for an upset stomach. 212° 1 level teaspoon tea per 8 ounces water; steep for 3-5 minutes. Organic.

Thursday, February 02, 2012

Thursday's herbal tisane -- Kapha


Origin: Various

Description: In Ayurvedic principles, your Kapha is said to be similar to clay (elements of water and earth). It helps to hold our constitution together and provides structure, fluid balance, endurance and strength. It is the slow, stable, calming, sweet and cold aspect of the self and governs our resistance to disease and promotes self healing. Kapha imbalance can have some of the following indicators: easily congested, lethargic, difficulty waking up in the morning when under stress, slow digestion. When Kapha is in balance, the mind is peaceful and settled and your body feels full of energy and strength. Our Ayurvedic Kapha herbal tea will help restore balance to your kapha energy. A delicious spicy-warm combination of lemon balm, ginger, cinnamon, cardamom, and black peppercorns. 212°F 1-2 level teaspoons tea per 8 ounces water; steep for 3-5 minutes. Multiple infusions possible. Caffeine-free. Organic.