A cup of tea can lift your mood and help you to relax. It is a great way to socialise and converse with others. It is often during having “a cuppa” that we speak about our problems and matters that are concerning us. Generally, tea can help to comfort in times of worry and stress. Teas come in many forms black, green, fruity and various herbal varieties. In the winter ginger tea can warm you up and in the summer ice tea such as lemon can be refreshing. Although black teas are more popular but it is herbal infusions that have the most health benefits and have been renowned for their healing properties worldwide.
Herbal teas come from Camellia Sinensis bush which is the plant that all teas are made. These botanical blends are actually infusions and the proper name is tisanes. Herbal teas are mixtures of dried leaves, seeds, grasses, nuts, barks, fruits, flowers, or other botanicals that produce their taste and provide certain benefits. These herbal infusions will be prepared in a similar way to most traditional teas but always follow the instructions to get the goodness from their properties as some of the leafs and flowers are quite delicate. After you have boiled the water it is best to let it cool before adding to the tea infusion and let it soak for between 3 – 6 minutes. Within many Eastern cultures they have traditional rituals and customs in how teas are brewed and served. Whilst if you are using the roots of teas then these are usually simmered in a pan in water for approximately ten minutes as a guide. Always avoid using pans that have aluminium metals and contaminants.
Here are just a few of my favourite teas:-
Chamomile is very calming and soothing, it can be a good tea to drink at night to help you get a restful sleep.
Peppermint can help ease headaches and be very good for the digestive system.
Spearmint tea is a particularly gentle remedy that is safe for pregnant women to use to alleviate nausea and morning sickness. Helps symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome and abdominal pains.
Ginger tea is a great tonic and can help to fight off a cold or flu especially if you add slice of lemon and sweetener. It is revitalizing and warming during the winter months for the whole body and can be good for the digestive. In addition improves the circulation so is good for arthritis and discomfort.
Lemongrass has a lovely refreshing tea with a great taste and smell which is so uplifting. It can bring relief from stomach disorders, insomnia, respiratory disorders, fever, aches, infections, rheumatism and edema.
Green Tea has many health benefits but in particular known for its high anti-oxidants and properties thought to fight infection, promote well-being and a long life.
Rooibos is caffeine free and has very similar properties to green tea, high in anti-oxidants and has a variety of health benefits.
Herbal tea are good for our overall health and have therapeutic benefits. They have varying amounts of vitamins and minerals. To gain the essence from their properties it is best to use loose leaf teas than tea bags which are highly refined. Although there are a few tea companies that have a produced a selective range of tea bags that are good quality but a little more expensive. Whilst making a pot of tea has been the tradition but you can easily prepare loose tea within a cup using simple gadgets strainers and infusers. Follow the advice regarding the amounts and how often to consume. Whilst herbal teas are perfectly safe always check for any warnings ie do not take if pregnant. Always check for any side effects/reactions to herbal teas and do not exceed the recommended amounts especially if using for specific ailment to help a condition.
Here are some of the many health benefits of herbal teas:-
· Help with stress and our well-being
· Relax and are calming for the mind
· Promote healthy heart
· Good for stomach and the digestive system
· Cleansing for our body
· Can be energising
· Support the immune system ie preventative for colds
· Anti-oxidants for the body
· Provide us with a restful night’s sleep
· Majority of herbal teas are caffeine free
· Beneficial for organs and the whole body system
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NYR Organics have a wide range of herbal teas, some can be purchase on line or visit the shop at Covent Garden.