This article details the history of Ceylon tea and its health benefits.
Until 1870, Sri Lanka had no clue about tea or its cultivation. Their major crop was coffee. In the year 1869, a major leaf virus broke out and destroyed almost all coffee crops. Estate owners were looking out for another option as their coffee plantation was destroyed. They started to follow the route of James Taylor. It was he who first started planting tea in the Royal Botanical Gardens of Peradeniya. This is how tea cultivation started in Ceylon, or Sri Lanka.
Sri Lanka is divided into various provinces. Details about tea cultivation based on these provinces follow:
Central province: Kandy, Nuwara Eliya
Uva province: Badulla, Bandarawela, Haputale
Southern province: Galle, Matara, Mulkirigala
Sabaragamuva province : Ratnapura, Kegalle
Tea produced in Nuwara Eliya has a special fragrance and flavor. The flavor of the tea is determined by two factors; namely, south-western monsoon and cold weather.
- Ceylon tea is rich in antioxidants and therefore helps in lowering the risk of getting cancer.
- As Ceylon tea has lots of antioxidants it helps in reducing cholesterol levels in the blood vessels thereby preventing high blood pressure and heart attacks.
- According to recent studies, it is shown that drinking four cups of Ceylon tea a day for a period of one month helps in increasing blood circulation.
- Ceylon tea helps in the prevention of plaque which helps the fight against cavities.
Ceylon tea is available in three types; Ceylon black tea, Ceylon green tea and Ceylon white tea. Ceylon white tea is costlier than the other types and it is mostly cultivated in Nuwara Eliya and Galle.
Golden rule to buy Ceylon tea
To avoid buying duplicate Ceylon teas, here is a small checklist. Check whether there is a lion logo on the package. If the lion logo is present, it seems to have passed the quality checks set by the Sri Lankan Tea Board.