WHY HERBAL TEAS ARE GOOD FOR YOU

Hot, herbal and healthy.

Woman's Era - - Contents - Sudha Har­i­ha­ran

Aper­fect way to start a day is wak­ing up to the aroma of

adrak or tulsi chai and sip­ping it as you flip through the news­pa­pers. Evenings too are in­com­plete with­out some tea, snacks and gup­shup. And as a long day ends, a cup of herbal tea is just right to calm those nerves and re­lax the mind.

Cloudy and rainy days, too, turn oddly sat­is­fy­ing once you have a cup of warm herbal tea in your hands. If you are phys­i­cally and men­tally tired, teas in­fused with herbs like gin­ger, tulsi, lemon­grass and mint tend to re­vive and re­ju­ve­nate you in a jiffy.

Herbal teas can be made with fresh or dried flow­ers, leaves, seeds or roots. They are made by pour­ing boil­ing wa­ter over the plant parts and let­ting them steep for a few min­utes. Seeds and roots can also be boiled on a stove. The herbal tea is then strained, sweet­ened, if de­sired, and served. With its grow­ing pop­u­lar­ity many com­pa­nies are now pro­duc­ing herbal tea bags.

Herbal teas or ti­sanes are bev­er­ages made from herbs and spices and do not usu­ally con­tain caf­feine and should not be con­fused with true teas (Black, green, Oo­long), which are pre­pared from the cured leaves of the tea plant. In Egypt, herbal teas such as hibis­cus tea ( karkade) are very pop­u­lar and are served in ah­was or tea­houses.

In China nat­u­ral herbal teas are very pop­u­lar in en­hanc­ing health and ad­dress­ing core is­sues within the body – the Chi­nese drink it to cool down the body when it has be­come over­heated due to weather or sick­ness and in Sri Lanka teas are used to treat a wide va­ri­ety of ail­ments. Study af­ter study have con­firmed that herbal teas are good for you and your over­all health – be it bet­ter skin or bet­ter sleep, tea has a com­fort­ing ef­fect on your mind and body.

Why you should start drink­ing herbal tea to­day

Breathe easy: Herbs present in pip­ing hot tea work as a de­con­ges­tant and un­block your nasal pas­sage, help­ing you breathe eas­ier when you have a com­mon cold or a stuffy nose. Gin­ger and

tulsi, herbs com­monly used in tea in In­dia, are ex­cel­lent im­mu­nity boost­ers and can help you keep the sea­sonal chills at bay.

No more di­ges­tive drama: Herbal teas are great for your gut. They help im­prove di­ges­tion, re­lieve con­sti­pa­tion and gas, ease stom­ach cramps and re­duce heart­burn. A happy di­ges­tive sys­tem will in­evitably lead to a hap­pier you.

Brain health, type II di­a­betes and blood pres­sure

Herbal teas pro­vide re­lief from nerve pain, strengthen mem­ory and brain func­tions. Bil­berry tea and sage tea help to cure di­a­betes in pa­tients not de­pen­dent on in­sulin. It cures type 2 di­a­betes and low­ers blood su­gar lev­els. High blood pres­sure also af­fects the heart and kid­neys and hibis­cus herbal tea can help lower BP with­out any side­ef­fects. As detox­ing agents, teas also help reg­u­late the func­tion of the thy­roid.

Early to bed: If sleep is an elu­sive com­mod­ity in your life, try a cup of herbal tea. A herbal tea that in­cludes chamomile is good for those with mild in­som­nia. Chamomile con­sists of a flavonoid called api­genin that calms our nerves and re­laxes the body. Say good­bye to those sleep­less nights!

Stay young, live longer: Many herbal teas con­tain an­tiox­i­dants that slow down age­ing. They do so by pre­vent­ing free rad­i­cal dam­age and re­duc­ing cell age­ing. Herbal teas are great for your skin, mak­ing them soft and sup­ple, and re­duc­ing acne. Stud­ies have also re­ported that peo­ple who con­sume herbal teas have lower lev­els of LDL or bad choles­terol, and re­duced risk of heart at­tack. In ad­di­tion, herbal teas are be­lieved to bet­ter reg­u­late blood su­gar, lower blood pres­sure and pro­mote good kid­ney health.

Lose those inches: Ditch your diet drink and switch to herbal tea. Most herbal teas have about two calo­ries, mak­ing them a per­fect all-day, guilt­free drink. So, here’s to one more cup of warm, herbal good­ness.

HERBAL TEAS CAN BE MADE WITH FRESH OR DRIED FLOW­ERS, LEAVES, SEEDS OR ROOTS. THEY ARE MADE BY POUR­ING BOIL­ING WA­TER OVER THE PLANT PARTS AND LET­TING THEM STEEP FOR A FEW MIN­UTES. SEEDS AND ROOTS CAN ALSO BE BOILED ON A STOVE.

Very lit­tle is needed to make a happy life; it is all within your­self, in your way of think­ing.

Hibis­cus tea.

Chamomile tea.

Turmeric tea.

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