What’s the difference? Black
and green tea come from the same plant, Camellia sinensis, an evergreen shrub that grows in the mountainous areas in China, India and other countries. The differences between them stem from what happens after the leaves are harvested and allowed to wilt. To make green tea, the leaves are quickly steamed or heated to stop oxidation, the chemical process that causes browning. To make black tea, the leaves are crushed, torn, curled, or rolled and allowed to oxidize before being dried. This additional processing step degrades some of the flavonoids. As a result, black tea has slightly lower amounts of flavonoids than green tea. Herbal teas are made from a range of different herbs, spices and other plants, such as mint, cinnamon, licorice, ginger and rose hips. While these brews may contain beneficial chemicals similar to those found in regular tea, there isn’t enough research to support any guesses about the potential health benefits of herbal tea.