B well – Tea Tips for good health

I’m more of a coffee drinker first thing in the morning but by late afternoon a hot cup of earl grey is nice & uplifting.  That was before I discovered the recipes below to switch things up a bit and realized the health benefits to boot.

The antioxidant compounds found in tea have been shown to reduce risk of breast cancer and heart disease and may help with weight management.  When you mix your brew with other beneficial ingredients, you’ll boost its power to tackle health complaints from high blood pressure to an upset stomach.  Sweet!

Tea

Make these cool brews for a summer twist.  Lose the sugar and stir in these extras instead + reap the health benefits while doing so.

SUGAR BUSTER = Black tea + Cinnamon                                                                               A 2012 study found that countries where people consumed the most black tea had the lowest rates of type 2 diabetes.  Antioxidants in the tea leaves may enhance insulin activity.  Adding cinnamon can make a good thing even better.  According to research in Diabetes Care, consuming just one-third of a teaspoon of cinnamon a day can reduce levels of glucose in people with type 2 diabetes.  Brew: Pour 8 ounces boiling water over 2 black tea bags and 1 cinnamon stick (or 2 tsp. powdered).  Steep for 4 minutes, let cool.  Transfer to an ice filled glass, top with 2 ounces club soda.

IMMUNITY BOOSTER = Green tea + Cranberry Juice                                        Antioxidants called catechins, which have antiviral properties, are more plentiful in green tea than in black.  Adding Vitamin C – which is abundant in Cranberry Juice – can increase absorption of the tea’s catechins.  Brew: Steep 2 green tea bags in 8 ounces of hot water for 2 minutes.  Stir in 2 ounces unsweetened cranberry juice and agave syrup to taste.  Pour over ice.

TENSION TAMER = Chamomile tea + Orange                                                              Flavonoids in this calming brew may enhance the activity of relaxing neurotransmitters in the brain.  In fact, research suggests that drinking five cups of chamomile tea a day may even help treat anxiety disorders.  Team it with Orange: research has found that simply smelling a sweet orange can lower anxiety in moments of stress.  Brew: crush 2 strips of orange zest, 1 tsp. dried lemon verbena leaves, 4 mint leaves, and 1 sprig rosemary together in a bowl.  Add 3 chamomile tea bags and pour 12 ounces of boiling water over the mixture.  Steep 5 minutes.  Strain and let cool.  Pour over ice and finish with a splash of sparkling water.

STOMACH SOOTHER = Peppermint tea + Ginger                                                               The menthol in peppermint can ease gastro-intestinal distress by relaxing the muscles of your digestive tract, while plant phenols in ginger can help speed up the movement of food through your system.  Brew: Pour 8 ounces boiling water over 2 peppermint tea bags and 3 slices fresh ginger, smashed.  Steep 5 minutes.  Let cool.  Strain, stir in honey to taste and pour over ice.

PRESSURE RELIEVER = Hibiscus tea + Coconut Water                                               Mildly hypertensive people who drank 3 cups of hibiscus tea daily for six weeks lowered their blood pressure as significantly as they would have by taking some hypertensive meds, according to a study in the Journal of Nutrition. Add coconut water for its potassium – the mineral helps keep blood pressure stable by reducing the negative effects of salt.  Brew:  Steep 2 hibiscus tea bags in 8 ounces hot unsweetened coconut water for 5 minutes.  Let cool.  Stir in 2 ounces sparkling water and pour over ice.

I’m feeling good already!

Taken from “Feeling Good” in O Magazine.  By Jessica Girdwain.

 

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