Teas to Please

Mental Fitness

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For a couple of years now, I’ve been reading everything I could get my hands on about tea. I’ve also been drinking every tea I could get my lips on. Both pursuits are serving me nicely!

Fortunately, the varieties of tea are nearly endless, so it’s never hard to find a new flavor to try out….though, admittedly, I keep returning to Chai, Green and White Pear. My favorite way to make tea at home is by the pot, using our coffee maker. I put the bags into the carafe, then allow the hot water to flow down over them – creating a whole pot. After it has set for a few minutes, I remove the bags. If it’s Green tea, I add sugar, honey and lemon. If it’s Chai, just a little sugar and sometimes a cinnamon stick. (White Pear also takes a bit of sugar, in my opinion; kind of aaaak without it!)

I’d love to get a special tea maker, because even after washing the carafe in the dishwasher, sometimes the Chai leaves a little flavor behind for the next pot of coffee. I don’t mind it, really, but my husband always detects it and makes a face like he just licked a highway. Not good, so I’m pricing tea makers!

In addition to just being darned good, there’s another reason to drink tea – for your Health. The healing properties of tea are so potent, it’s like having a supplement in a cup.

Both green and black teas have strong antioxidants, and appear to help prevent a variety of diseases and conditions, including heart disease, cancer, ulcers, inflammatory diseases, and even gum disease and cavities. Green tea has also been proven to aid weight loss. That alone is making it alot of friends!

Rooibos () tea is also high in antioxidants and may reduce the risk of cancer. Yerba maté, (an herbal tea from South America) is rich in polyphenols and has antioxidant properties comparable to green tea.

tea, something I can’t go a day without, contains herbs and spices that are used traditionally to soothe gastric distress and warm the body. If you compliment your tea with a rolled-up stick of cinnamon bark while it’s steeping, you give yourself a bonus shot of healing properties. Cinnamon has antibacterial, anti-fungal and antiviral properties, which make it a perfect companion for bolstering immunity.

Herbal Brews

In addition to the teas above, there are a lot of herbal brewed teas that are also juiced up with healing properties.

A few miseries and the herbal teas that can alleviate them are:

  • Colds, Flu and Allergies: Licorice root helps treat throat irritation; Elderberry relieves common discomforts associated with the flu; Hyssop heals congestion, coughs and hoarseness; Stinging Nettle is used for hay fever and other allergies.
  • Coughs and Lung Disorders: Thyme is useful for bronchitis and lung congestion; Ginger acts as an expectorant to treat congestion and mucous buildup; and Fenugreek helps treat bronchitis, and clear coughs and congestion. (I once actually took as a tablet supplement and noticed a decrease in problems with my asthma.)
  • Detoxification: Oregon grape root, Yellow Dock Root and Boldo each support liver function which aides the elimination of toxins.
  • Lack of Energy: Ginseng, Ginger and Peppermint are awesome energizers. Peppermint tea is incredibly good – especially with butter cookies or pound cake.
  • Headache: Rosemary is said to relieve headaches. Ginger and Peppermint teas are also said to be good for headaches. I can’t say that I’ve ever tried any for this ailment, I always run to my Tylenol bottle!
  • Memory Loss: Rosemary is also believed to improve your memory.
  • Indigestion: Peppermint and Fennel are said to improve and stimulate digestion, and a lot of people swear by Ginger for helping with motion sickness as well as morning sickness. I remember morning sickness all too well, however, and the thought of even smelling ginger would have been an invitation to the paper sack. The thing that always helped me, actually, was just regular tea – at room temp.
  • Insomnia: Valerian, Hops, Passionflower and Skullcap are each believed to help promote sleep.
  • PMS: Try Fennel Seed, Black Horehound, Cardamom and Caraway Seeds, Lemon Balm and Chamomile to help calm the beast known as PMS. I’m seeing alot of products on the market for different hormonal maladies that contain Black Horehound – there must be something to it.
  • Stress: , Lemon Balm and Catnip are said to have very calming effects. Catnip is even reported to be really close to being a sedative. There’s a bit of irony, given the fact that it jacks my cats up to other worlds.

Whew, that was a deadly amount of typing – I think that calls for a large mug of Chai tea!

Make each moment count double,

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