Search for Author, Title, Keyword
Iron, Zinc, Copper, Manganese and Chromium in Green Teas, Their Transfer to Extracts and Correlations between Contents of Elements and Bioactive Compounds
More details
Hide details
Department of Analytical Chemistry, Faculty of Chemistry, Jagiellonian University, Gronostajowa 2, 30-387 Kraków, Poland
Department of Chemical and Physical Properties of Food, Institute of Animal Reproduction and Food Research, Polish Academy of Sciences, Tuwima 10, 10–748 Olsztyn, Poland
Forensic Science Institute, Westerplatte 9, 31-033 Krakow, Poland
Submission date: 2022-08-27
Acceptance date: 2022-11-08
Online publication date: 2022-11-22
Publication date: 2022-11-22
Corresponding author
Michał Adam Janiak   

Department of Chemical and Physical Properties of Food, Institute of Animal Reproduction and Food Research, Polish Academy of Sciences, Tuwima 10, 10-748, Olsztyn, Poland
Pol. J. Food Nutr. Sci. 2022;72(4):421-429
Green tea is used worldwide in the preparation of beverages, but also its extracts rich in bioactive compounds, especially flavan-3-ols, are of increasing interest. In addition to bioactive molecules, green tea represents a source of dietary elements. However, knowledge about their content in extracts is limited. The aim of our research was to determine the extent of transfer of selected elements, i.e., iron (Fe), zinc (Zn), copper (Cu), manganese (Mn), and chromium (Cr), from green teas to their extracts and to investigate whether the main bioactive compounds of the extracts affect this transfer. Twelve commercially available green teas were used in the study. The contents of elements in green teas and their extracts obtained with 80% acetone (v/v) were analysed by inductively coupled plasma optical emission spectroscopy (ICP-OES). High performance liquid chromatography in reverse phase (RP-HPLC) was used to determine contents of caffeine, (–)-epigallocatechin (EGC), (–)-epicatechin (EP), (–)-epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG), and (–)-epicatechin gallate (ECG). The element with the highest content in green teas was Mn (711–1402 µg/g), but its transfer to extracts was the lowest (0.269–0.646%). The mean Fe transfer, second abundant element in teas (115–725 µg/g), was 5.52%. The contents of Mn and Fe in extracts were 5.08–30.2 and 10.7–90.1 µg/g, respectively. Zn, Cu, and Cr were transferred with means of 10.4, 20.0, and 26.2%, respectively, which resulted in their contents in the extracts in the ranges of 5.03–12.6, 1.93–13.8, and 0.128–2.03 µg/g, respectively. The significant positive correlations of Zn content in extracts and/or transfer to extracts with EGCG, EGC and total flavan-3-ols as well as between the same Fe variables and EGC were determined, which suggested that these flavan-3-ols may positively affect the transfer of Fe and Zn from green tea to extracts. In turn, significant but negative correlations were found in the case of Mn and Cu. Future research is needed to identify the causes of the various transfer rate of elements from green teas to extracts.
This research received no external funding.
The authors declare no conflicts of interest.
Barman, T., Barooah, A.K., Goswami, B.C., Sharma, N., Panja, S., Khare, P., Karak, T. (2020). Contents of chromium and arsenic in tea (Camellia sinensis L.): Extent of transfer into tea infusion and health consequence. Biological Trace Element Research, 196(1), 318–329.
Barone, G., Giacominelli-Stuffler, R., Storelli M.M. (2016). Evaluation of trace metal and polychlorinated biphenyl levels in tea brands of different origin commercialized in Italy. Food and Chemical Toxicology, 87, 113–119.
Bártíková, H., Boušová, I., Matoušková, P., Szotáková, B., Skálová, L. (2017). Effect of green tea extract-enriched diets on insulin and leptin levels, oxidative stress parameters and antioxidant enzymes activities in obese mice. Polish Journal of Food and Nutrition Sciences, 67(3), 233–240.
Bronco, S., Cappelli, C., Monti, S. (2006). Characterization of supramolecular polyphenol−chromium(III) clusters by molecular dynamics simulations. Journal of Physical Chemistry B, 110(26), 13227–13234.
Brzezicha-Cirocka, J., Grembecka, M., Szefer, P. (2016). Monitoring of essential and heavy metals in green tea from different geographical origins. Environmental Monitoring and Assessment, 188(3), art. no. 183.
Carloni, P., Tiano, L., Padella, L., Bacchetti, T., Customu, C., Kay, A., Damiani, E. (2013). Antioxidant activity of white, green and black tea obtained from the same tea cultivar. Food Research International, 53(2), 900–908.
Cherrak, S.A., Mokhtari-Soulimane, N., Berroukeche, F., Bensenane, B., Cherbonnel, A., Merzouk, H., Elhabiri, M. (2016). In vitro antioxidant versus metal ion chelating properties of flavonoids: A structure-activity investigation. PLoS ONE, 11(10), art. no. e0165575.
Chowaniak, M., Niemiec, M., Zhu, Z., Rashidov, N., Gródek-Szostak, Z., Szeląg-Sikora, A., Sikora, J., Kuboń, M., Fayzullo, S.A., Mahmadyorzoda, U.M., Józefowska, A., Lepiarczyk, A., Gambuś, F. (2021). Quality assessment of wild and cultivated green tea from different regions of China. Molecules, 26(12), art. no. 3620.
Dambiec, M., Polechońska, L., Klink, A. (2013). Levels of essential and non-essential elements in black teas commercialized in Poland and their transfer to tea infusion. Journal of Food Composition and Analysis, 31(1), 62–66.
Deka, H., Barman, T., Sarmah, P.P., Devi, A., Tamuly, P., Karak, T. (2021). Impact of processing method on selected trace elements content of green tea: Does CTC green tea infusion possess risk towards human health? Food Chemistry: X, 12, art. no. 100173.
Janiak, M.A., Amarowicz, R. (2018). Antioxidant potential of high molecular weight polyphenol fraction from green tea. Bulgarian Chemical Communications, 50(C), 138–143.
Janiak, M.A., Slavova-Kazakova, A., Kancheva, V.D., Ivanova, M., Tsrunchev, T., Karamać, M. (2017). Effects of γ-irradiation of wild thyme (Thymus serpyllum L.) on the phenolic compounds profile of its ethanolic extract. Polish Journal of Food and Nutrition Sciences, 67(4), 309–315.
Jiang, H., Yu, F., Qin, L., Zhang, N., Cao, Q., Schwab, W., Li, D., Song, C. (2019). Dynamic change in amino acids, catechins, alkaloids, and gallic acid in six types of tea processed from the same batch of fresh tea (Camellia sinensis L.) leaves. Journal of Food Composition and Analysis, 77, 28–38.
Karamać, M., Gai, F., Peiretti, P.G. (2020). Effect of the growth stage of false flax (Camelina sativa L.) on the phenolic compound content and antioxidant potential of the aerial part of the plant. Polish Journal of Food and Nutrition Sciences, 70(2), 189–198.
Karamać, M., Pegg, R.B. (2009). Limitations of the tetramethylmurexide assay for investigating the Fe(II) chelation activity of phenolic compounds. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, 57(14), 6425–6431.
Kejík, Z., Kaplánek, R., Masařík, M., Babula, P., Matkowski, A., Filipenský, P., Veselá, K., Gburek, J., Sýkora, D., Martásek, P., Jakubek, M. (2021). Iron complexes of flavonoids-antioxidant capacity and beyond. International Journal of Molecular Sciences, 22(2), art. no. 646.
Klepacka, J. (2022). Tea infusions as a source of phenolic compounds in the human diet. Applied Sciences, 12(9), art. no. 4227.
Koch, W., Kukula-Koch, W., Komsta, Ł., Marzec, Z., Szwerc, W., Głowniak, K. (2018). Green tea quality evaluation based on its catechins and metals composition in combination with chemometric analysis. Molecules, 23(7), art. no. 1689.
Lee, V.J., Heffern, M.C. (2022). Structure-activity assessment of flavonoids as modulators of copper transport. Frontiers in Chemistry, 10, art. no. 972198.
Ma, G., Zhang, J., Zhang, L., Huang, C., Chen, L., Wang, G., Liu, X., Lu, C. (2019). Elements characterization of Chinese tea with different fermentation degrees and its use for geographical origins by liner discriminant analysis. Journal of Food Composition and Analysis, 82, art. no. 103246.
Na Nagara, V., Sarkar, D., Luo, Q., Biswas, J.K., Datta, R. (2022). Health risk assessment of exposure to trace elements from drinking black and green tea marketed in three countries. Biological Trace Element Research, 200(6), 2970–2982.
Navarro, R.E., Santacruz, H., Inoue, M. (2005). Complexation of epigallocatechin gallate (a green tea extract, egcg) with Mn2+: nuclear spin relaxation by the paramagnetic ion. Journal of Inorganic Biochemistry, 99(2), 584–588.
Oswell, N.J., Thippareddi, H., Pegg, R.B. (2018). Practical use of natural antioxidants in meat products in the U.S.: A review. Meat Science, 145, 469–479.
Peluso, I., Serafini, M. (2017). Antioxidants from black and green tea: from dietary modulation of oxidative stress to pharmacological mechanisms. British Journal of Pharmacology, 174(11), 1195–1208.
Perva-Uzunalić, A., Škerget, M., Knez, Ž., Weinreich, B., Otto, F., Grüner, S. (2006). Extraction of active ingredients from green tea (Camellia sinensis): Extraction efficiency of major catechins and caffeine. Food Chemistry, 96(4), 597–605.
Pongrac, P., Tolrà, R., Hajiboland, R., Vogel-Mikuš, K., Kelemen, M., Vavpetič, P., Pelicon, P., Barceló, J., Regvar, M., Poschenrieder, C. (2020). Contrasting allocation of magnesium, calcium and manganese in leaves of tea (Camellia sinensis (L.) Kuntze) plants may explain their different extraction efficiency into tea. Food and Chemical Toxicology, 135, art. no. 110974.
Samsonowicz, M., Regulska, E. (2017). Spectroscopic study of molecular structure, antioxidant activity and biological effects of metal hydroxyflavonol complexes. Spectrochimica Acta Part A: Molecular and Biomolecular Spectroscopy, 173, 757–771.
Schulzki, G., Nüßlein, B., Sievers, H. (2017). Transition rates of selected metals determined in various types of teas (Camellia sinensis L. Kuntze) and herbal/fruit infusions. Food Chemistry, 215, 22–30.
Scoparo, C.T, de Souza, L.M., Dartora, N., Sassaki, G.L., Gorin, P.A.J., Iacomini, M. (2012). Analysis of Camellia sinensis green and black teas via ultra high performance liquid chromatography assisted by liquid–liquid partition and two-dimensional liquid chromatography (size exclusion × reversed phase). Journal of Chromatography A, 1222, 29–37.
Senanayake, S.P.J.N. (2013). Green tea extract: Chemistry, antioxidant properties and food applications – A review. Journal of Functional Foods, 5(4), 1529–1541.
Shah, M.A., Bosco, S.J.D., Mir, S.A. (2014). Plant extracts as natural antioxidants in meat and meat products. Meat Science, 98(1), 21–33.
Shi, Y., Zhu, Y., Ma, W., Shi, J., Peng, Q., Lin, Z., Lv, H. (2022). Comprehensive investigation on non-volatile and volatile metabolites in four types of green teas obtained from the same tea cultivar of Longjing 43 (Camellia sinensis var. sinensis) using the widely targeted metabolomics. Food Chemistry, 394, art. no. 133501.
Slavova-Kazakova, A., Janiak, M.A., Sulewska, K., Kancheva, V.D., Karamać, M. (2021). Synergistic, additive, and antagonistic antioxidant effects in the mixtures of curcumin with (–)-epicatechin and with a green tea fraction containing (–)-epicatechin. Food Chemistry, 360, art. no. 129994.
Sun, M.-F., Jiang, C.-L., Kong, Y.-S., Luo, J.-L., Yin, P., Guo, G.Y. (2022). Recent advances in analytical methods for determination of polyphenols in tea: A comprehensive review. Foods, 11(10), art. no. 1425.
Svoboda, P., Vlčková, H., Nováková, L. (2015). Development and validation of UHPLC–MS/MS method for determination of eight naturally occurring catechin derivatives in various tea samples and the role of matrix effects. Journal of Pharmaceutical and Biomedical Analysis, 114, 62–70.
Szymczycha-Madeja, A., Welna, M., Pohl, P. (2012). Elemental analysis of teas and their infusions by spectrometric methods. TrAC Trends in Analytical Chemistry, 35, 165–181.
Tang, G.-Y., Meng, X., Gan, R.-Y., Zhao, C.-N., Liu, Q., Feng, Y.-B., Li, S., Wei, X.-L., Atanasov, A.G., Corke, H., Li, H.-B. (2019). Health functions and related molecular mechanisms of tea components: An update review. International Journal of Molecular Sciences, 20(24), art. no. 6196.
Tolrà, R., Martos, S., Hajiboland, R., Poschenrieder, C. (2020). Aluminium alters mineral composition and polyphenol metabolism in leaves of tea plants (Camellia sinensis). Journal of Inorganic Biochemistry, 204, art. no. 110956.
Vuong, Q.V., Stathopoulos, C.E., Nguyen, M.H., Golding, J.B., Roach, P.D. (2011). Isolation of green tea catechins and their utilization in the food industry. Food Reviews International, 27(3), 227–247.
Wong, M., Sirisena, S., Ng, K. (2022). Phytochemical profile of differently processed tea: A review. Journal of Food Science, 87(5), 1925–1942.
Wróbel, K., Wróbel, K., Urbina, E.M.C. (2000). Determination of total aluminum, chromium, copper, iron, manganese, and nickel and their fractions leached to the infusions of black tea, green tea, Hibiscus sabdariffa, and Ilex paraguariensis (mate) by ETA-AAS. Biological Trace Element Research, 78(1–3), 271–280.
Yang, B., Ren, S., Zhang, K., Li, S., Zou, Z., Zhao, X., Li, J., Ma, Y., Zhu, X., Fang, W. (2022). Distribution of trace metals in a soil–tea leaves–tea infusion system: characteristics, translocation and health risk assessment. Environmental Geochemistry and Health.
Zhang, L., Zhang, J., Chen, L., Liu, T., Ma, G., Liu, X. (2018). Influence of manufacturing process on the contents of iron, copper, chromium, nickel and manganese elements in Crush, Tear and Curl black tea, their transfer rates and health risk assessment. Food Control, 89, 241–249.
Phenolic Compound Profile and Antioxidant Capacity of Flax (Linum usitatissimum L.) Harvested at Different Growth Stages
Francesco Gai, Michał Janiak, Katarzyna Sulewska, Pier Peiretti, Magdalena Karamać
Advanced mass spectrometry profiling of phenolic and minerals compounds in herbal beverages
Laura Puig, Meritxell Boqué, Ariadna Ferrer, Laura Fernández-Ruano, Josep Blasco, Margalida Cladera
Food Chemistry
Phenolic Profile and Antioxidant Potential of Beverages from Buckwheat and Side Streams after Beverages Production
Michał Janiak, Magdalena Karamać, Katarzyna Sulewska, Ryszard Amarowicz, Petko Denev, Adriana Slavova-Kazakova
influence of citric acid on the extraction level of manganese in green and black tea infusions
Krzysztof Kleszcz, Katarzyna Michoń
Science, Technology and Innovation
Journals System - logo
Scroll to top