Health Benefits of Rooibos

health benefits of rooibos

Rooibos is a caffeine free herbal tea with a remarkably smooth and slightly sweet flavor. It has a robustness typically not found in caffeine free blends, which makes it a popular tea and coffee substitute.

This South African plant is also rich in antioxidants, low in tannins, and is also a source of certain trace minerals. In South Africa, the plant has many traditional medical uses, and is still used today for its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.

Antioxidants

Rooibos contains a different class of antioxidants than the ones found in green tea. The polyphenols in rooibos remove free radicals from the body. Free radicals can damage the DNA in cells, leading to cancer, and they can oxidize cholesterol, leading to clogged blood vessels, heart attack, and stroke.

Caffeine Substitute

If you’re having trouble kicking coffee or tea, rooibos makes a great substitute. This makes it an ideal candidate for nighttime consumption. Its low tannin content makes it safe on the stomach.

Cardiovascular Health

Quercetin is an antioxidant in rooibos with numerous heart health benefits. It has an anti-inflammatory effect, and promotes an increase in HDL cholesterol while inhibiting LDL cholesterol from binding to arteries and blood vessels.

Diabetes

Aspalathin, an antioxidant found in rooibos, can help regulate blood sugar, improve insulin resistance and glucose absorption by muscles, and boost insulin secretion from the pancreas. This helps prevent the onset of type II Diabetes and protect against spikes and drops in blood sugar for those who already have diabetes.

Bone Health

Rooibos is a natural source of fluoride,and manganese. A 200ml serving contains a daily value of 5.5% Flouride, and 1.7% manganese. Manganese is an essential mineral for bone growth. Fluoride helps prevent tooth decay, just make sure to keep the sugar out!

Skin Health

Rooibos contains alpha-hydroxy acids, which makes it ideal for the skin. A rooibos infusion can be applied directly to the skin. As always, test a small area to make sure you don’t have a reaction.

Antispasmodic

Rooibos has antispasmodic agents, which can ease stomach cramps and abdominal pain.

Adverse Effects

People who have a history of hormone driven cancers should consult a physician before consuming rooibos on a regular basis. In the June 2006 issue of “Biological and Pharmaceutical Bulletin” a report of 25 rooibos compounds showed that three demonstrated estrogenic activity.

Summary

Rooibos is a naturally caffeine free beverage and a rich source of antioxidants you might be lacking in your diet. It’s a great way to keep your heart healthy, your blood sugar balanced, and help keep the stomach cramps at bay. Try drinking rooibos later in the day to keep from staying up all night.

Browse our selection of premium organic rooibos

Resources

  • Erickson, Laurie. Rooibos Tea: Research into Antioxidant and Antimutagenic Properties. HerbalGram. 2003; 59:34-45 American Botanical Councilhttp://cms.herbalgram.org/herbalgram/issue59/article2550.html?ts=1379490923&signature=891f7b84f6aeb058eb97de268a0e013c
  • Goepp, Julius: Quercetin: Enhanced Antioxidant Protection Against Heart Disease, Cancer, Allergies, and More. Life Extension Magazine
  • Kawano A, Nakamura H, Hata S, Minakawa M, Miura Y, Yagasaki K. Hypoglycemic effect of aspalathin, a rooibos tea component from Aspalathus linearis, in type 2 diabetic model db/db mice. Department of Applied Biological Science, Tokyo University of Agriculture and Technology, Fuchu, Tokyo 183-8509, Japan.
  • Gilani AH, Khan AU, Ghayur MN, Ali SF, Herzig JW. Antispasmodic effects of Rooibos tea (Aspalathus linearis) is mediated predominantly through K+ -channel activation. Department of Biological and Biomedical Sciences, Aga Khan University Medical College, Karachi 74800, Pakistan.

Health Benefits of Oolong

oolong health benefits

Oolong tea is a semi-fermented tea, somewhere between green and black tea. In the west, oolong tea makes up a small percentage of overall tea consumption. It is prized for its complex flavor and ability to hold flavor over multiple steepings.

As a semi-fermented tea, it has antioxidants found in both green and black teas. Theoretically, it should have a wider range of health benefits. However, the science is less established than it is with green or black tea.

Oolong and Weight Loss

According to a preliminary US Agricultural Research Service study, oolong tea consumption results in a higher energy expenditure, with more calories burned and oxidized.

Physiologist Dr. William Rumpler, of the US Agriculture Research Services’ Diet and Human Laboratory, investigated oolong tea’s weight loss benefits. Participants in the study noted higher energy expenditure, with more calories burned, and fat oxidized:

  • Energy expenditure (EE) levels were about 3% higher when they drank either the full strength oolong tea or the caffeinated water versus the non caffeinated water.
  • Participants burned an average of 67 more calories per day when drinking the full strength oolong tea.
  • Participants increased fat oxidation (fat burning) by 12% after consuming the full strength oolong tea versus the caffeinated water.

A 2003 Japanese study compared the benefits of oolong tea and green tea on weight reduction. This small, preliminary study found that drinking oolong tea resulted in greater energy expenditure than green tea.

When identifying why oolong performed better, they found that although green tea had higher caffeine and EGCG content, the concentration of polymerized polyphenols was significantly higher in oolong tea.

These findings show that it’s the polymerized polyphenols, highest in oolong tea, that link tea to burning fat, not just the caffeine or just the combination of caffeine and EGCGs. Furthermore, the rest of the compounds compared in the teas were similar or equal to one another with no marked differences, reinforcing the results.

Oolong and Heart Disease

In a population study published in 2010, oolong tea consumption was associated with a reduced risk of mortality from cardiovascular disease. 76,979 adults, from 40 to 79, were free of stroke, heart disease, and cancer at the start of the study. When participants were asked about their beverage consumption, the researchers determined that those who drank coffee, green tea, and/or oolong tea on a regular basis had a lower risk of heart disease.

Other Health Benefits of Oolong

Other health benefits attributed to drinking oolong are inferred by the antioxidants that are shared with green and black teas. Tea in general is associated with antioxidant and anticancer activity. The mineral content found in tea promotes healthy bone structure. In addition, the caffeine content in oolong helps improve focus and concentration.

Check out our premium organic oolong teas

Resources:

  • U.S. Department of Agriculture: Brewing Up the Latest Tea Research http://www.ars.usda.gov/is/ar/archive/sep03/tea0903.htm
  • Komatsu T, Nakamori M, Komatsu K, Hosoda K, Okamura M, Toyama K, Ishikura Y, Sakai T, Kunii D, Yamamoto S. Oolong tea increases energy metabolism in Japanese females.J Med Invest. 2003 Aug;50(3-4):170-5.
  • Chung S. Yang and Zhi-Yuan Wang. Tea and Cancer. JNCI J Natl Cancer Inst (1993) 85 (13): 1038-1049 doi:10.1093/jnci/85.13.1038
  • Wu C, Yang Y, Yao W, Lu F, Wu J, Chang C. Epidemiological Evidence of Increased Bone Mineral Density in Habitual Tea Drinkers. Arch Intern Med. 2002;162(9):1001-1006. doi:10.1001/archinte.162.9.1001.
  • Mineharu Y, Koizumi A, Wada Y, Iso H, Watanabe Y, Date C, Yamamoto A, Kikuchi S, Inaba Y, Toyoshima H, Kondo T, Tamakoshi A; and the JACC study Group. “Coffee, green tea, black tea and oolong tea consumption and risk of mortality from cardiovascular disease in Japanese men and women.” J Epidemiol Community Health. 2010 Jul 14.

Enter Your Birthday for Discount on Tea

Birthday discount for tea. Image Courtesy Sakura Mutsuki, Flickr

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Top Five Fall Organic Teas

top fall teas

The first fall chill is in the air. As the autumn leaves begin to turn, sit in front of your favorite window with a tall mug of our best recommended seasonal organic teas:

Organic Pumpkin Spice:

A full bodied black tea base with cinnamon, ginger, orange peel, and clove. A great way to warm up on a cold day. Try with a splash of milk and sugar.

Poached Pear:

Reminiscent of a freshly poached pear, simmered in cinnamon, vanilla, and clove. This organic green and white tea blend will invigorate the senses.

Apple Strudel:

Reminiscent of a freshly baked apple strudel with a flaky crust, sweet apple filling, and cinnamon. Our organic Apple Strudel tea has a vanilla black tea base, with apple, cinnamon, and rosehips. It’s a guiltless dessert in a cup!

Cranberry Apple:

Addictive tart fruity notes of cranberry and apple with piquant flavors of hibiscus. Tasty hot or iced. Naturally caffeine free organic blend, full of antioxidants.

Cinnamon Vanilla Rooibos:

The smooth, full bodied flavor of organic rooibos with silky flavors of vanilla and spicy notes of cinnamon. Dessert in a cup! Naturally caffeine free, full of antioxidants.

Health Benefits of Chamomile Tea

health benefits of chamomile

Chamomile has been prized for its medicinal qualities since the days of the Roman Empire, and in ancient Egypt and Greece. It was used to treat a variety of external and internal conditions. To this day, it holds a special place in the herbalist’s pantry to soothe and to heal. Here are some well-known health benefits of chamomile:

Soothes the Digestive System

Chamomile contains a wide variety of beneficial compounds for the digestive tract. Bisabolol, for example, has anti-inflammatory properties and relaxes the smooth muscle lining of the digestive tract. Chamomile has an antispasmodic effect on the digestive system.

Promotes Relaxation and Sleep

Chamomile tea is often used as a natural sleep aid. One of the compounds present in the chamomile is called apigenin, which is thought to promote mild sedation. Chamomile helps in reducing nervous activity in the evenings, allowing you to fall asleep with more ease.

Anti-Inflammatory

Chamomile inhibits inflammation in a similar manner to anti-inflammatory drugs known as COX inhibitors, but without harmful side effects. Papaverine, a compound in chamomile, relieves muscle spasms in the intestinal tract and in blood vessels.

Soothes the Skin

Due to its anti-inflammatory properties, a topical application of chamomile can help relieve itching, swelling, and redness. Chamomile is used to treat dermatitis, eczema, burns and other minor forms of skin irritation. Try applying chamomile tea to your skin with a clean spray bottle. Just be sure to test a patch a skin first for a reaction. Even people who drink chamomile just fine can have a skin reaction.

Menstrual Cramps

Preliminary studies indicate that drinking chamomile results in higher levels of an amino acid called glycine in the urine. Glycine has been shown to be effective in reducing muscle spasms, which may explain how it helps to relieve menstrual cramps in women.

Does it Help with the Immune System?

Preliminary studies indicate that drinking chamomile causes you to bulk up on beneficial compounds with antibacterial properties. Also, breathing the steam of chamomile tea may help relieve cold symptoms.

Does it Help with Diabetes?

Preliminary animal studies have shown that chamomile consumption results in a decrease in blood glucose levels. It also inhibited two enzymes, both of which have a role in the development of diabetic complications such as diabetic neuropathy (nerve damage), cataracts, retinopathy (retinal damage of the eye), and nephropathy (kidney damage).

Warnings:

Chamomile is a flower in the Asteraceae, or daisy, family. People who are allergic to ragweed, aster, or chrysanthemums may also have a reaction to chamomile. This is a rare occurrence, but anyone taking chamomile should be aware of this possibility.

Check out our premium organic chamomile tea, available in bulk.

Resources:

Health Benefits of Chai

health benefits of chai

A good spicy chai invokes warm feelings. The intoxicating cinnamon spice aroma feels good inhale. The full bodied concoction is best savored in the taste buds, and feels warm and spicy going down. It’s a great seasonal tea with numerous health benefits, making it one of those rare pleasures that are both good and good for you.

Surprisingly, chai was originally developed as a form of Ayurvedic medicine. Traditional chai spices were chosen for their health benefits. According to Ayurvedic medicine, these spices are considered to be “sattvic,” or calming, vitalizing and mentally clarifying.

Looking at the ingredients, chai has numerous digestive, anti-inflammatory, and immune boosting health benefits:

Digestive Health:

Ginger is a well-known digestive aid that relaxes and soothes the digestive tract. Cardamom and cinnamon help sooth stomach cramps and relieve digestive related issues such as indigestion, flatulence, and nausea.

Anti-Inflammatory

Clove is high in eugenol, an anti-inflammatory substance. Clove also contains a variety of flavonoids, including kaempferol and rhamnetin, which also contribute to clove’s anti-inflammatory (and antioxidant) properties. Black pepper and ginger have compounds that inhibit the formation of inflammatory compounds.

Immunity

Tea is full of anti-viral and anti-bacterial compounds. In addition, most chai spices possess complimentary immune system benefits. Black pepper, cinnamon, and clove contain different oils and substances that have been shown to effectively eliminate antibiotic resistant bacteria.

Other Health Benefits

Cinnamon has been found to lower LDL cholesterol, and have a regulatory effect on blood sugar. Cinnamon has also been found to improve cognitive function and memory.

Find out the health benefits of black tea

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