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25 Herbal Teas and Tisanes - Their Health and Medicinal Benefits
Fed up of coffee? Well why not try herbal tea for a refreshing change? Tisanes are full of health giving benefits so your system may get a boost too. They are naturally caffeine free and most are suitable for children.
25 Teas and their Health and Medicinal benefits
In no particular order:
1. Chamomile is a very gentle and calming tea. It helps with relaxation and is good for stress and resulting insomnia. Take a cup before bed. Chamomile tea also relieves indigestion and bloating; take a cup after meals.
2. Lavender tea is made from the dried flowers of the lavender shrub. Lavender has many health benefits including as a soothing remedy for stomach problems such as bloating or an upset tummy. It can help you relax and promotes sound sleep. Lavender also has antiseptic properties and the cooled tea can be used to bathe cuts and grazes. It can also improve the mood if you are feeling mildly depressed.
3. Rosemary tea is good for the liver and gall bladder. It is also a muscle relaxant so is useful if you’ve over-exercised. This tea is good for digestion, coughs, colds and mild asthma attacks.
4. Nettle tea is made from the leaves of the stinging nettle plant. It is a great remedy for many conditions including: Anaemia, arthritis, bladder problems, blocked nose, coughs and colds.
5. Lemongrass tea is a detoxificant. It is anti-inflammatory and aids digestion. Lemongrass is good for menstrual problems and can bring down a fever. The tea is good for lowering high blood pressure and cholesterol. When cooled it can be used to bathe cuts and grazes and for fungal infections.
6. Hibiscus Flower tea is useful for the immune system as it is rich in vitamin C. It is an aid to lower blood pressure and cholesterol levels. It is also high in antioxidants.
7. Ginger tea is a stimulant. It is great for controlling nausea and soothes the digestion. Ginger is also an anti-inflammatory and is good for soothing the pain of rheumatism and arthritis.
8. Liquorice Root tea is a sweet tea with anti-inflammatory properties. It is made from the dried roots of the liquorice plant. The tea may be used for soothing tight unproductive coughs as it is an expectorant. The tea can be drunk to treat stomach ulcers and various endocrine disorders but please check with your GP before embarking on a course of self-treatment as it can interact with some medications.
9. Redbush (Rooibos) tea is caffeine free so is an ideal drink for bedtime. It can help with insomnia. Redbush is reputed to be anti-carcinogenic, anti-inflammatory and anti-viral. This tea is safe enough to be added to baby’s milk to help with colic. It is high in minerals and vitamins.
10. Milk Thistle tea is very good for the liver and can be drunk after a night on the town to counter the effect of excess alcohol. It is good for the digestion too.
11. Olive Leaf tea is a good immune system booster and helps to protect against illness.
12. Lemon Balm tea can be drunk to help with stress, anxiety and nervousness. It can promote healthy sleep. It is drunk to correct thyroid problems but please use with caution as it may interfere with your medication. When cooled can be applied to cold sores to relieve the discomfort.
13. Cardamom tea is made from the seeds and flowers of the cardamom plant. It is aromatic and relieves flatulence and indigestion. It is good if you have a stomach ache or feeling sick. Cardamom tea can help with chesty coughs and pre menstrual tension.
14. Peppermint tea is a pleasant soothing drink which is good for digestion. It is used for relieving indigestion and flatulence; it can however sometimes make heartburn worse so use with caution.
15. Dandelion tea is a diuretic so is good if you suffer from water retention. It aids digestion and cleanses the liver.
16. Rosehip tea is an excellent source of vitamin C. It is a general health tonic and immune system booster. The tea can help with adrenal gland issues and is good for the skin.
17. Sage tea is a relaxant and can help with anxiety and depression. It can be useful for panic attacks too. Because of its antiseptic properties it can be cooled and used as a gargle for a sore throat or mouth ulcers.
18. Green tea is reputed to be anti-carcinogenic and anti-viral. It is full of anti-oxidants which aid free radical suppression. It can be drunk to regulate cholesterol and blood pressure and used as a mouthwash to prevent tooth decay.
19. Vervain tea is anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory. It can help with joint problems such as arthritis. There are reports that vervain can help with anxiety, stress and depression. The tea can be drunk to relieve stomach problems and to aid detoxification.
20. Echinacea tea is sometimes used to purify the blood but its main claim to fame is for treating the common cold and influenza. It is a soothing drink for your sore throat too and will boost your immune system.
21. Fennel tea has a faint aniseed flavour; it is suitable for children and calms colic and wind spasms in babies. In adults it is a marvellous digestion aid and alleviates bloating, wind, constipation and heartburn. Fennel is also good for colds and flu. It is a diuretic and is reputed to speed up the metabolism as well as being an appetite suppressant. With all of these it may well be useful for weight loss
22. Yarrow tea is good for fevers, colds and flu. It promotes sweating and helps to get rid of toxins.
23. Raspberry Leaf tea can be safely used in pregnancy once the first 3 months have passed. It is good for shortening the second stage of labour by relaxing the uterus. Raspberry Leaf tea is also good for menstrual cramps and morning sickness.
24. Valerian tea is a stimulant although it can be used as a sleep aid. It is an anti-spasmodic and carminative so can be used to treat indigestion.
25. Blackcurrant Leaf tea is a diuretic and can be drunk to treat water retention. It is good also for stress and lowering blood pressure.
*NB If you are pregnant always check with your healthcare professional whether your herbal choice is safe.
There are literally 100’s of varieties of herbal tea; those above are just a very small selection. It would take forever to describe every tisane there is. Some of the teas are available as tea bags and some are sold loose. It is possible to buy bags or mesh infusers to put the tea in for a convenient way of brewing or you can simply buy the loose ingredients, brew the tea in a pot and strain into a cup.
In the UK Tea-and-coffee.com is a nice site and they stock loose leaf and herbal teabags as well as the empty bags and other supplies.
Mountainroseherbs.com in Eugene USA offers similar supplies.
The History of Herbal Tea
Herbal teas have been drunk for many hundreds of years both for treating illness and for pleasure. It is believed that the ancient Egyptians used various concoctions which would nowadays be called Tisanes or Herbal Teas. The ancient Greeks and Romans too were avid herbalists and used their recipes to treat illness. Long before tea – the black variety, Camellia Sinensis was introduced to the western world some 400 years ago we were drinking herbal preparations in Europe like Chamomile and Peppermint tea which are still firm favourites today.
© Susan Bailey 2013 All Rights Reserved