Green tea is popular in China, Korea, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Japan, Pakistan, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Morocco, and the Middle East. Recently, it has become more widespread in the West, where traditionally black tea is consumed.
• The Kissa Yojoki (Book of Tea), written by Zen priest Eisai in 1191, describes how drinking green tea can have a positive effect on the five vital organs, especially the heart. The book discusses tea's medicinal qualities, which include easing the effects of alcohol, acting as a stimulant, curing blotchiness, quenching thirst, eliminating indigestion, curing beriberi disease, preventing fatigue, and improving urinary and brain function.
• A German study found that an extract of green tea and hot filtered water, applied externally to the skin for 10 minutes three times a day, could help people with skin damaged from radiation therapy (after 16-22 days).
• A study published in the December 1999 American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that "Green tea has thermogenic properties and promotes fat oxidation beyond that explained by its caffeine content per se. The green tea extract may play a role in the control of body composition via sympathetic activation of thermogenesis, fat oxidation, or both."
Almost of all black-colored foods are good for weight and cholesterol control.
• Black rice is one of several black-colored heirloom plants producing rice variants. High in nutritional and medicinal value, black rice is rich in iron and considered a blood tonifier. This grain is high in fiber and has a deep, nutty taste. The deep color of black rice and the deep purple color when cooked, suggests the presence of phytonutrients. It has a relatively high mineral content (including iron) and, like most rice, supplies several important amino acids.
• This variety includes any black-colored variety of bean. Beans which include black-colored varieties encompass the soybean, the azuki bean, the mung bean, and the rice bean.
• Drinking black vinegar for its health benefits is becoming increasingly popular in Japan, with double-digit growth in sales reported for the last two years. The brownish-red colored vinegar, which is drunk in small quantities, is estimated to account for almost 20% of the vinegar market in Japan.
• The black sesame seed is less common and has a more concentrated flavor than the white sesame.