By Winston Yang of Oolong Inc.
Green and oolong tea have long been believed to provide many health benefits, especially for weight loss, better hair and skin. Recent studies have even linked tea to prevention of prostate cancer. How exactly tea neutralizes cancer is still not completely understood. Nevertheless, one cancer survivor from Taiwan is willing to live by its effectiveness.
Mr. Lin Yuyang is not only a cancer fighter, but also a pioneer of Taiwan’s tea industry. For over a decade, Mr. Lin has been experimenting with earth friendly techniques to produce oolong tea. When he was diagnosed with tongue cancer, he set out to produce a cure for his own illness.
Seven years has gone by, and Mr. Lin’s cancer is still in remission. The secret? His own oolong tea and fruit shakes. He would start each day, on an empty stomach, drinking a fruit shake with the following ingredients: kiwi, apple, banana and guava. It would be followed up by 2 liters of light green oolong tea (not to be confused with Japan’s matcha) later in the morning. In the evening, he would take 2 liters of his own black tea. Running a successful business , it is impossible to avoid regular foods in the course of the work day. Nevertheless, he takes extreme caution to avoid grease, fat and meat. The real key to his health, according to Mr. Lin, is a positive mindset and a good heart.
Mr. Lin’s tea plantation has been chemical free for over a decade. He has developed farming techniques that use no pesticides or weed killer. Bugs are allowed to live freely on his land. “Insects are part of nature that deserves a place to exist,” says Mr Lin.” Human should only take the leftover, after nature gets what it needs” He removes weeds manually, and nurtures the tea trees (camellia sinensis) with organic fertilizer.
The pride of the plantation is its oriental beauty. It is a type of exotic oolong tea that relies on tea bugs for its unique flavor. The bug bites on the leaves and stems, setting off an early fermentation process. For the past several years, Mr. Lin’s has been a regular winner at Taiwan’s annual Oriental Beauty Competition. For in-depth explanation of the process, please visit here.
For its innovative farming techniques, Mr. Lin’s plantation was recognized in 2014 by Taiwan Tea Council as a “Spotlight Plantation”. It is the only one in northern Taiwan, away from the famed Nantou County and Alishan, the homes of the much fancied high mountain oolong and Alishan oolong.
Along with oriental beauty, Mr. Lin produces a light green oolong, which is barely fermented, and a more fermented black tea that carries notes of Taiwanese sweet potato. Mr. Lin gulps down his oolongs profusely to hold his cancer at bay. Both variety of oolong possess substances that are believed to fight cancers. When tea leaves are lightly fermented, they can release large amount of polyphenols ―EGCG, EGC, ECG, and EC. More heavily fermented tea, such as black tea, contain theaflavin instead. These chemicals are anti-oxidants. They can neutralize free radicals in the body, which are thought to be a cause of cancers and tumors. ( For more detailed explanation, please visit here).