There’s always time for tea! Check out our list of the top five healing herbal teas for women, with numerous health benefits!
“If you are cold, tea will warm you;
If you are too heated, it will cool you;
If you are depressed, it will cheer you;
If you are excited, it will calm you.”
These lines are proof that tea is a woman’s best friend! A tea to match a woman’s every mood and state – now that’s what we’re talking about!
After water, tea is the most popular drink in the world. However, the general usage of the word tea refers to ‘true tea’, or tea that is brewed from the leaves of the camellia sinensis plant. This includes black tea and green tea, as well as oolong. Today, we’re not going to talk about this tea; instead, we’ll look at herbal tea.
Herbal tea is made from infusing parts of plants like flowers, spices, herbs and roots. These teas are free from caffeine and contain a host of healing properties, based on the ingredients used. Herbal teas are also called tisanes. The teas are either available as tea bags or as individual ingredients that can be steeped. Sometimes, herbal teas are mixed with true teas to create flavored teas.
Herbal teas may seem like a modern phenomenon, but they’ve been used for ages to treat a variety of ailments, especially women’s issues. Depending upon the ingredients used, the tea can balance a woman’s hormones and ease any associated disorders. Here is a look at the top five healing herbal teas for women.
Top Five Healing Herbal Teas for Women
1. Ginger Tea
To many Indians, the mention of ginger tea may bring back memories of masala chai, but the tea in question here is ginger root tea, made with an infusion of the root of the Zingiber officinale plant. It is widely used in traditional medicine around the world.
To make ginger tea: Peel an inch of ginger root and slice it thinly. Boil the ginger slices in a cup of water for 10 minutes. Remove from heat and add lime juice and honey if desired.
Besides this, ginger tea is also available in tea bag form. The tea has a distinct spicy taste, and goes well with some honey.
Benefits of Ginger Tea:
- Cures nausea. Ginger tea is a good remedy for nausea, especially morning sickness in pregnancy. It also relieves symptoms caused due to cancer treatment or motion sickness.
- Relieves period pain. Another important use of ginger tea is in relieving period pain or menstrual cramps, thanks to its anti-inflammatory properties. Several studies have proven the effectiveness of ginger in dysmenorrhea to match that of anti-inflammatory drugs.
- Soothes stomach pain. Besides period pain, ginger tea also helps to soothe pain due to ulcers, indigestion, cramps or bloating.
- Eases inflammation. Because it has anti-inflammatory properties, ginger tea can also reduce muscle pain and joint pain, especially in older women with osteoarthritis.
2. Peppermint Tea
Peppermint tea is made from the leaves of the Mentha balsamea Wild plant. It is believed to have originated in Europe and is popular in the Middle East and Africa. Dried peppermint has also been found in Egyptian pyramids dating back to 1000 BCE.
To make Peppermint Tea: Use either a tablespoon of fresh leaves or a teaspoon of dried leaves for one cup of tea. Pour hot (not boiling) water over the leaves in an infuser and let it steep for 5-7 minutes. Add a squeeze of lemon if desired.
Peppermint tea has a yellowish-light green color and has a distinct cooling effect, just like mint.
Benefits of Peppermint Tea:
- Treats digestive issues. The most talked about benefit of peppermint tea is its help in soothing the digestive system. Peppermint tea takes care of all kinds of digestive troubles like nausea, indigestion, cramps, acid reflux and stomach aches.
- Energizes the mind. Peppermint tea can also perk you up – both physically and mentally. Peppermint has muscle relaxing properties, and it also increases oxygen supply to the brain, increasing focus and memory.
- Delays ageing. Peppermint tea may also help delay ageing, thanks to its antioxidant properties. It also possesses antibacterial, antiviral and possibly anticancer properties.
Caution: Peppermint Tea is not recommended for people who suffer from GERD or gastrointestinal reflux disease. Pregnant women are also advised to stay away from peppermint.
3. Hibiscus Tea
Hibiscus is a flower that is used for many home remedies, and hibiscus tea is just one of them. Hibiscus tea is made from the flowers of the Hibiscus rosa-sinensis plant, which is abundant in India.
To make the hibiscus tea: Use ¼ cup of fresh hibiscus petals or half the quantity of dried hibiscus for one cup of water. Put the water and hibiscus in a pan to boil. Once it starts boiling, turn off the heat, cover and let it steep for 15-20 minutes. Serve warm or chilled. Add lemon juice or honey if desired.
Hibiscus tea has a characteristic red color and tastes like cranberries. It is quite refreshing, especially when served chilled.
Benefits of Hibiscus Tea:
- Boosts immunity. Hibiscus tea is packed with Vitamin C and antioxidants like polyphenols and flavonoids that boost the immune system and help prevent illnesses like the common cold.
- Improves heart health. Hibiscus tea also boosts heart health. Studies show that hibiscus tea may reduce levels of blood lipids as well as high blood pressure and high levels of bad LDL cholesterol.
- Aids weight loss. It has also been found that hibiscus tea can promote weight loss, a common problem in women especially as they age. A study of overweight people found that hibiscus helped reduce body weight, body fat, BMI as well as their hip to waist ratio.
Caution: Hibiscus tea may affect estrogen levels, so it’s not recommended during pregnancy or in case of trying to conceive. People with low blood pressure would also do to stay away from hibiscus tea. It may also interfere with the action of certain drugs.
4. Holy Basil Tea
Holy basil tea is made from the leaves of the Tulsi or Ociumum sanctum plant, which belongs to the common basil family. The leaves are longer than regular basil. Tulsi is a plant that has a lot of significance in religion and spirituality, particularly in the Indian subcontinent.
To make the holy basil tea: You can use either a teaspoon of fresh leaves or half a teaspoon of dried leaves per cup. Boil a cup of water and pour it over the leaves. Let it steep for 20 minutes. Strain and sweeten as desired.
Benefits of Holy Basil Tea:
- Prevents respiratory issues. Tulsi tea has several properties that help deal with common respiratory issues. It is antitussive, which means it can relieve cough, and it also possesses expectorant properties that helps in eliminating phlegm. It is also known to ease symptoms like sore throat, bronchitis, congestion and cough.
- Lowers blood sugar. Diabetics will find holy basil tea greatly useful since it helps to lower blood sugar levels and prevents sudden spikes of the same. It ensures better metabolism of fats and carbohydrates so that the nutrients are utilized by the body in the best manner possible.
- Combats stress. One way tulsi tea helps to combat stress is by lowering the level of the stress hormone cortisol. The other way is in its adaptogen properties. Adaptogens help the body adapt to any kind of stress, maintaining mental equilibrium.
- Improves stomach health. Holy basil tea is a great remedy for stomach ulcers, and offers effectiveness without the side effects of common ulcer medicines. Tulsi tea can also tackle digestive issues like cramps, indigestion and vomiting.
Caution: Holy basil tea is generally considered to be safe if it’s been grown in an organic, chemical free area. Holy basil grown otherwise can be contaminated with toxins. Some studies show that holy basil may affect fertility and can cause uterine contractions, due to which it’s not recommended for pregnant or breastfeeding women.
5. Chamomile Tea
Chamomile tea is made from the flowers of the plant family Asteraceae. The flowers look like daisies and are dried to make loose tea or tea bags.
To make Chamomile Tea: Place a tablespoon of dried chamomile flowers in an infuser or make a pouch of them with muslin. Place it in a mug and pour boiling water over it. Let it steep for 5 minutes and take out the bag or infuser. Add honey if desired.
Chamomile tea has a light yellow color and tastes a little like apples. It can also be made with fresh chamomile flowers, if you can get your hands on them.
Benefits of Chamomile Tea:
- Promotes sleep. The biggest benefit of chamomile tea is regarding its use to promote good sleep. It also reduces interruptions during sleep and increases the duration of deep sleep.
- Eases anxiety. Chamomile tea’s calming properties help deal with postpartum depression. Chamomile has inherently calming properties which help to cure anxiety and insomnia.
- Reduces cramps. Chamomile tea has anti-inflammatory properties due to which it is often used to treat menstrual cramps. Some studies also show that it may ease premenstrual symptoms.
- Prevents bone loss. Women are prone to losing bone density as they age, and chamomile tea can help prevent this loss. It may also help older women deal with diabetes symptoms.
Caution: Chamomile tea may cause allergies in those who are allergic to pollen, so such people are advised to use chamomile sparingly. It can also interfere with the action of some medicines like blood thinners.
Most herbal teas taste good either warm or chilled, and you can use either depending upon the weather. What’s more, it can also be used in smoothies or as a base for soups and gravies. However, some teas may be contra indicated for people with certain conditions. So if you’re pregnant or lactating, or have any underlying health condition, always consult your doctor before introducing a herbal tea in your daily routine.
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