Over the years, teas such as rooibos and green tea have become known for their health benefits. But outside of these household favourites, many other herbal options are being recognised due to their healing properties. Here we consider the amazing health properties of three herbal teas.
If you’re a tea drinker who has trouble falling asleep, chamomile is the perfect choice for you. It’s a naturally caffeine-free tea that helps to calm the mind, and has been scientifically shown to relax the body and induce sleep, making it a godsend for insomniacs. The tea, which is made from chamomile flowers, is also said to help with digestion. If you have a fever, bronchitis, cough or cold, chamomile can provide relief, and gargling with it can soothe inflammation of the mouth.
Peppermint tea is a refreshing favourite. It also has a number of health benefits. Research has shown that it helps to relieve abdominal bloating, soften the skin, cure colds, reduce pains such as toothaches, and relieve muscle spasms. The plant’s oil, present in the tea leaves, has been shown to treat sufferers of IBS as well. It has also been known to help with nausea. However, you should not drink it if you’re suffering from heartburn or indigestion, which it can make worse. Peppermint is easy to grow in your garden, but if you want it commercially, a number of companies offer purely organic varieties.
The health benefits of buchu, of the Agothosma family, have been recognised for hundreds of years. Made into a tea, it has a minty fragrance and contains anti-fungal and anti-bacterial properties. Research has also found buchu to be anti-inflammatory, with benefits for rheumatism, gout and hangovers, as well as premenstrual cramps and bloating.
In the United States, the tea is approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as a natural diuretic, and the buchu plant’s benefits have been backed up by rigorous, peer reviewed studies. It’s efficient in flushing the kidneys, helping to treat problems like urinary tract infections and prostate infections, gonorrhoea, cystitis, low sperm count and impotence. It also promotes general well-being, thanks to its rich store of vitamins A, B, and E, antioxidants and flavonoids.