Perk up with some Tea Health Benefits!
I see you there, wanting to be healthier, but there’s just so much advice out there.
Wake up. Twenty push-ups. Protein shake. 45 minutes weight-lifting. 4-mile run.
Right? There’s an easier way to bolster your health alongside whatever you fit into your day, and it’s delicious.
A cup of tea!
Beautiful tea leaves dance in a steamy mug and give off a comforting aroma. Drinking tea has been a big part of cultures for millennia, originating in China. It’s been touted as a miracle cure for many ailments. So let’s look at the top power players of the tea world and how they’ll give you a win in your corner.
Golden, apple-like chamomile is your best friend. It’s happy daisy-like blossoms look great in your garden as well as in your cup. Studies have shown that you can use chamomile tea to revive dying plants in your garden. If that’s the case, what do you think it can do for a human body?
While technically not a “tea,”(I know. Herbal teas don’t count.) rather a tisane or infusion, the herb chamomile contains polyphenol compounds. These are the chemicals that potentially help fight cancer, de-stress your bod, and help with that pesky oxygen. Plus, it’s tasty. Drink this when you’re wanting to calm down or just something smooth next to your afternoon read.
Here’s a lovely chamomile recipe.
And here’s a great deal to buy in bulk.
If chamomile is your best friend, peppermint is your grandma. It’s gonna be there for when your stomach is upset, and you need someone to put something cold on your forehead and tell you how good you look.
Menthol is the magic in mint plants. It’s going to be the main ingredient combating stomach aches and nausea. It’s analgesic qualities reduce pain too, perfect for those sick days off from work. Leaning over and taking a deep inhale of peppermint tea can de-clog the nose cave.
Enjoy it store-bought or grow your own. Just be careful, peppermint will absolutely take over your garden. Give it an inch, and you’ll get a mile of green.
It plays well with pretty much all the teas on the list, except ginger. Throw in some leaves with others and make sure to let steep around seven minutes.
Want to grow your own? Here’s a good spot to find seeds:
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What can I say about ginger? Or do you prefer Mary-Ann?
This herb of antiquity has been used in medicines around the world. Grab a fresh root from the store and join the crowd of folks reaping its benefits. Like it’s cool-spicy cousin mint, this warm-spicy herb helps with nausea, and the gingerol in it is used to fight cancer. Its anti-inflammatory properties help with joint and muscle pain. Good after a workout, right?
To make this at home, get some ginger root from the store and use the handy potato peeler to get the skin off it. Slice it in slivers to increase the surface area, and put them in boiling water, reduce the heat to simmer and let it release all that goodness into the pot.
Heck, throw in some honey, cinnamon, and clove too to make something even better.
Here’s another great recipe to use with ginger tea:
Now for the actual tea. I know; it’s been a long build up.
The tea plant we all know and love from the iced sweet tea of the South to the expensive cups of hot white tea, Camellia sinensis plant is the hero of the hour—or era. It’s been cultivated since the Shang Dynasty; that’s in the second millennium B.C.
“White” is young, barely touched leaves of this plant whereas “Green” is the matured version. “Black” is the tea that has been oxidized and withered, and “Oolong” tea is fairly similar except more attention is paid to its processing.
Enough of that though, we should look at the reasons it’s been a part of the culture for so long.
Tea contains theanine and caffeine which work together to reduce stress, boost your mood, and improve cognition. Additionally, there are traces amounts of theobromine (This is the stuff in chocolate too.) that reduces inflammation and assists the immune system. For people with blood sugar problems or Type 2 Diabetes, this can assist in that daily battle.
Green teas started as a health drink and became a household staple. Their many types reduce the risk of heart disease. This is our number one killer in America. So we could use the help.
Personally, I like a good cup of juniper Earl Grey. Just steep Earl Grey with juniper flavoring, or steep a tiny bit of the berry in with it. You don’t need much as juniper is a strong flavor.
Not sure where to get juniper berries or Earl Grey? Have no fear.
You’re on your own for the water though.
Pronounced “roy-boss,” (I had to look it up too. Don’t worry.) this red bush originates in South Africa. And better drink it while you can folks, it’s in danger from climate change. It only grows in this one spot and is sensitive to changes in the weather. Talk about a bummer.
While it doesn’t contain caffeine like the earlier teas on the list, it does, in fact, contain those aforementioned polyphenols which makes it a good option of those who don’t like caffeine or are affected adversely. The benefits of tea can fit any lifestyle.
Its specific compounds include aspathalin which helps fights mutagens in the body and benzoic acid which is antiseptic and antifungal.
Out of all of these, this drink is my favorite over ice.
So yeah, you can boil a vast variety of plants in water to make a beverage, but I think these ones have the right chemical compounds for health improvement. While we’re still waiting on hard evidence from the folks in lab coats, why not make a conscious choice in a healthy direction? Who knows? You may be getting on the treadmill after you check some tea off your list.
Grab some leaves. Boil some water. Invite some friends.