Legends say that the discovery of tea dates back to roughly 5,000 years ago by Chinese Emperor Shen Nung when a single leaf blew into his pot of boiling water. He found that not only did the leaf improve the taste of the water, but it seemed to have an awakening effect on the body and mind. Time has advanced, but tea still continues to be the world's favorite beverage.
With more research and even more processing techniques developed, the same Camellia sinensis (the tea plant), has been broadly classified into 4 categories of teas by the tea universe- Black, White, Green and Oolong.
WHAT REALLY IS IN YOUR TEA
Tea is the second most consumed drink in the world, surpassed only by water, obtained from the leaves of the plant Camellia sinensis, which is a sub-tropical, evergreen plant native to Asia but is now grown around the world. The tea plant grows best in loose, deep soil, at high altitudes, and in sub-tropical climates. So, in short, "tea" is anything derived from the Camellia sinensis plant.
The most amazing part of the beverage is its subtle, natural taste which comes from the boiling of leaves. It is often mixed with other ingredients to give a combined taste of both the tea leaves and the ingredient, viz Orange, Clove, Cardamom and so on. With the advancement of the likeness of tea amongst tea lovers all over the world, tea manufacturers have started retorting to usage of artificial oils, essences and additives to give the taste of the ingredients, however, it is always advised to consume tea which is 100% natural and pure, considering the assumption that anything not natural maybe harmful in the longer run.
TYPES OF TEA
Typically, tea is divided into 4 groups based on their processing, although funnily, as against the common belief, they are all derived from the same Camellia sinensis plant: