Herbal Tea and Its Benefits

Herbal Tea

Herbal teas and decoctions are drinks often used in times of stress, nervousness, illness, and psychological tension in order to relax or cure a special illness. Furthermore, you can drink most of the herbal teas daily, just like black tea.

‌Before knowing about the benefits of some of the herbal teas, you must understand that despite the public belief, there is a difference between herbal tea and decoction. In other words, brewing and decocting of the herbs are two separate processes, each of which has separate effects on the body.

In order to prepare an herbal tea, the fruits, leaves, stems, or roots of the herbs are dried and ground, and finally brewed. In this case, you should grind the herb and pour it in the boiled water for 15 up to 20 minutes inside a lidded vessel and on mild steam; then you must filter the brew.

Drinks extracted from tea leaves, borage, hollyhock, lemon beebrush, valerian are sorts of brew or herbal tea. Many traditional Persian medicine experts and healers believe that drinking herbal or black tea is the best and most simple way to reduce common body pains and prevent certain diseases. Persian Food

The Difference between Herbal Tea and Decoction

If you pour the herb in the water and boil the cold or warm water, there you will have a decoction that has a stronger flavor and effect than that of the herbal tea or brew. It will also have more strengthening and aromatic features comparing to the herbal distillates. Though, various researches have shown that some herbal decoctions, because of their strong and immediate effect on the body organs, can have bad side effects, or even cause food poisoning. So, we recommend using a moderate amount of herbal tea for daily usage and avoid using unknown herbal decoctions without the prescription of experts in the field.

Introducing Some of Brews

Chamomile Tea

Chamomile Tea

Chamomile was a known herb to the ancient Egyptians and Romans as a medicine that can cure all diseases. In addition to being used as a sedative and reliever, this brew is used to increase breast milk in the lactation period, break bladder stones, cure headaches and fevers, and also is anti-allergic and strengthens the brain.

Chamomile is good for curing stomach ulcer and swelling; therefore, it is recommended to drink a glass of chamomile brew in the morning and before breakfast; then lay down on your back for about 4 minutes, and then you can have your breakfast. To get better results, do this for two weeks. If you want to cure your insomnia or want to sleep better drink a glass of chamomile brew before sleep. Also, if you have an uneasy stomach this brew can be of help to you.

Quince fruit and leaf Tea

Quince fruit and leaf Tea

You can see that this herbal tea is more colorful and tasteful than the black tea and is more aromatic and flavorful than a lot of the brews. This drink cures dry cough, is sedative, strengthens the brain and heart muscles, reduces anxiety, and is exhilarative. To point out other benefits, it is said that the quince brew strengthens the liver, stomach, heart, and nerves, prevents bad breath, is good for cold, cures chronic headaches, and helps digestion.

Lemon Beebrush Tea

Lemon Beebrush Tea

This tea has a smell that is similar to the smell of lemon. It reduces anxiety, prevents fatigue, and is a good cure for insomnia. Lemon beebrush tea is also good for migraine, headache, and high heartbeat rate, strengthens the stomach and the brain, and helps blood circulation.

Mint Tea

mint tea

Mint is one of the oldest herbal medicines. Ancient Greeks used to rub mint leaves on their arms to increase their physical power. This tea strengthens the stomach, is anti-convulsion, cures cough, reduces anxiety, cures cold and flu, prevents fatigue, hiccup, nausea, gripe, and stomachache. A glass of hot mint tea alleviates chest pain and it is also recommended that gargling hot mint tea can cure throat ache. Drinking this tea with some honey is a good and harmless medicine for energy loss.

Orange Blossom Tea

orange blossom tea

This tea is brewed just like black tea. Traditional medicine experts prescribe this brew to cure depression. It is very aromatic, flavorful, sedative, exhilarative, and appetizing, it increases energy, cures neural headaches, and reduces blood cholesterol.

Borage Tea (Gol Gav Zaban Tea)

borage tea

Gol Gav Zaban means “cow’s tongue flower” in Persian. Prescribing this traditional tea could cure cold-weather coughs. It reduces anxiety, is exhilarative, lightens the skin, and prevents the shortness of breath, throat ache, anxiety, stress, and depression.

Drinking borage tea with some honey is good for curing the shortness of breath. Moreover, because it has magnesium, it reduces the chance of getting cancer. Other benefits of borage tea are strengthening the heart and the mind, and preventing high heartbeat rates. It is also good for the kidneys, prevents swelling and infections, helps breaking the kidney stones. Consumption of this tea is not recommended for children and pregnant women.

Roselle or Sour Tea

Roselle tea

The origin of roselle tea goes back to West Africa and is also planted in most tropical areas. Some sources mention that sour tea comes from tamarin blossom. This tea is also known as the mecca tea or red tea and it decreases blood pressure and liver inflammation and cools down the body. It can regulate blood sugar calms the mind and helps blood circulation. It is said that sour tea is full of iron but having organic acids and vitamin C, it improves the absorption of iron from meaty meals and also strengthens the immune system. People who have high blood sugar, fat, and blood pressure can use roselle tea two times a day but drinking too much of this tea can cause indolence and flabbiness.

Chay-e Kouhi or Stachys lavandulifolia Tea

chai kouhi

Chay-e Kouhi could be found in almost every herb shop in Iran and is often picked from the mountains along with other wild herbs in spring. This tea is commonly used by the villagers as a relaxant, brain nutrient, anti-allergic substance, intestine blockage opener, and body immunizer.

Fennel Tea

fennel tea

This drink doesn’t have a pleasant taste and could be used as an herbal medicine. Fennel tea is sedative, alleviates menstruation pain, increases women’s breastmilk, and cures amenorrhea.

Cinnamon Tea

cinnamon tea

The availability of this spice has made it easy to brew this special tea. Cinnamon alleviates back, feet and joint pain, cures anxiety and bad breath and increases blood pressure, and hence prevents cold temper. This tea stimulates the nerves and because of its hot temper, increases physical energy. Though various herbal teas such as caraway, nettles, valerian, mint, ginger, and cardamom tea also have the same feature.

Coriander Tea

coriander tea

Drinking coriander tea in cold seasons helps to cure seasonal allergies, nasal drip, and sneezing. Drinking two cups of coriander tea a day is a good way to prevent cold and different allergies and acts as a natural antihistamine.

Pussy Willow Tea

pussy willow tea

Masters of traditional medicine say that pussy willow tea is disinfectant, anti-bacterial, is good for the digestive system, eliminates acne, decreases inner inflammation, and cools down the body.

Marigold Tea

marigold tea

Recent researches have proved that marigold tea or extraction has ingredients that can attack chronic cancer cells, prevent skin cancer, cervix cancer, and chronic leukemia. Experts believe that this herbal tea due to its high amount of phenolic compounds, has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory features, but using too much of it could be toxic and dangerous.

Fruit Tea

fruit tea

Most fruit teas have spicy scents and give a strong color to the hot water. If the smell and color are too strong, you must doubt the originality of the product.

We can point out some of the benefits of fruit teas such as preventing cold, decreasing blood pressure and concentration, helping liver function and energizing, and preventing fatigue. It should also be said that comparing to herbal teas, fruit teas have more vitamins, are full of antioxidants, help the immune system and empower the mind.

Calming Herbal Tea

calming herbal tea

This tea could include borage, lavender, valerian, and orange blossom that gives you a calming mixture.

Lavender is good for the nerves and prevents sadness and sorrow. Valerian, orange blossom, and borage cure the uneasiness of the nerves, apprehension, anxiety, insomnia, and migraine.

Energizing Mixture Tea

energizer herbal tea

This tea could contain coriander, cardamom, cinnamon, ginger, clove, and ginseng. Ginseng is an energizer and nutrient and is known as the herb of youth throughout the world. It improves memory, happiness, mental and physical power. Clove nurtures the brain and prevents cancer. Ginger is an energizer and nurtures the stomach. Cardamom is aromatic and energizer and cinnamon is exhilarative.

Weight Loss Tea

weight-loss tea

This tea contains green tea, senna, cumin, and damask rose. Green tea accelerates body fat burn. Senna is laxative and has hormonal benefits. Cumin is an energizer and increases physical power. Damask rose is exhilarative and hence the mixture of these herbs provides a good weight loss drink.

Needless to say, this tea is not too effective as you might think and somehow prevents gaining weight.

Herbal Tea Bag or Loose Herbal Tea?

Herbs and fruits as loose tea or tea bag are usually not washed. However, herbal tea bags are disinfected by chlorine, sulfur, or gamma rays until the microbes are reduced to the minimum level so that they do not become molded in the long term.

Dr. Azizi, food industry and science expert, says about loose herbal tea: “People who want to buy loose herbal tea should get an herb that is in the form of full leaves and never use herbal tea powder because it is not clear which herb it is, is it of high quality, or with what ingredients it is mixed.” Azizi also states that for hygiene and more coloring, it is better to wash the herbs with water before brewing in order to reduce the possible number of microbes.

Herbal Tea Bag; Of Good Quality or Not?

Herbal teas have been presented as loose tea for a long time, but with the progress of the food industry, these herbs are also put inside tea bags and with different packing.

Dr. Azizi, food industry and science expert, says about herbal tea bags: “Because the herbs are crushed to be put inside tea bags, they somehow might lose their quality. But if the tea bags are produced in a reliable and credible factory with the standard sign and hygienic license, they could be considered as having good quality.”

This expert adds that: “many herbal tea bags have a light-yellow color, except roselle, topical fruit, and sour cherry teas that have a strong red color. If an herbal tea has a very strong color and flavor, you should doubt the originality of the product. Unless they are dried properly, they are not perishable. Usually, herbal tea bags made in Iran are of high quality since they are organic and are not mixed with other ingredients.

Do Not Use Too Much Herbal Tea

Herbal tea could have both pros and cons and in addition to its benefits could have effects such as increasing or decreasing blood sugar or blood pressure, cause indolence, or could interfere with chemical medicines or different foods. So, you should use a moderate amount of brew. Experts believe that the daily use of herbal teas such as a proper amount of cumin, fennel, and coriander is not bad for health. But herbs such as borage that raises or lowers the blood sugar or other blood factors has a consumption limitation and the amount, usage, medical benefits, and side-effects must be mentioned on the package.

How to Make an Herbal Tea with a Teabag

Herbal Tea

Pour hot water on the herbal tea bag and leave it be for a few minutes inside a lidded container and away from the source of heat. An herbal tea bag is prepared between 5 to 10 minutes because of containing herb powder and it gives its color and flavor to the hot water. But herbs that exist as complete leaves, stems, or roots may be prepared for up to 20 minutes. Drinking cold herbal tea with the exception of some herbs is not recommended because the brew loses some of the effective substances as it cools down. It is recommended to drink the tea for between 1 to 2 hours.

Possible Herbal Tea Side Effects

Medical, energizing, and calming features increases when we mix the herbs, and sometimes the side effects are decreased. But sometimes the interference of different herbs could reduce the benefits or even cause food poisoning.

So please do not mix different herbs together on your own and try getting packed and original herb mixtures.

Herb Expiration Date

Herbs have beneficial substances that react with the air oxygen and gradually lose their benefits. So, they must be kept in dry, cool, and shady areas for up to 2 or 3 months.

Keeping them more than the above-mentioned time may not cause smell or flavor change or the herb may not perish but it will gradually affect its medicinal features. Needless to say that unoriginal and fake loose herbal teas don’t have a clear expiration date and might be unhealthy.