For thousands of years we have used herbal teas for more than just a drink, it's comforting, healing, helps us drift off to sleep and has become a staple in a good catch up with friends or when reading a book!
There are two types of tea available, those known as 'true teas' which include black, green, white and oolong teas and then there are herbal teas, or also known as 'tisane'.
Herbal teas are made from the infusion of herbs, leaves, seeds or roots and are caffeine free, naturally effective and inexpensive and each come with a host of health benefits. We've taken a look at some of the readily available herbal teas and what benefits they provide.
Most commonly used as a culinary spice, ginger also offers a stimulating flavour to be used in tea. Warm and spicy, this herbal tea is used to kerb feelings of nausea, sickness and when our stomachs are upset. You can also mix ginger with lemon and honey to warn off a cold in the cooler months.
A great after dinner drink, ginger aids in the digestion of food after eating. If you've found yourself over eating, the ginger can help ease the bloating and stomach ache often associated with this.
Try: Pukka Three Ginger Tea or TEATOX Natural Defense Immune Boosting Tea
Find a relaxing moment in life with TeaTox Daily Balance with Ginger, Verbena, Honey Bush, Lemon Grass and Lemon Myrtle Leaves
Thought to have been cultivated as far back as the times of ancient Greece, Rome and Egypt, the peppermint plant has one of the longest histories. It's delicious and refreshing and an excellent way to boost your overall health. Peppermint can be easily grown in your back garden or a flower pot on your window sill.
For thousands of years, peppermint has been used to sort a variety of digestive and gastrointestinal conditions. It helps to move gas through the body preventing bloating, cramping and stomach discomfort. It also aids in reducing the feeling of queasiness and stomach aches associated with nausea, vomiting or motion sickness.
To top off its amazing health benefits, peppermint tea has known antibacterial properties, so if you feel a cough, cold, sneeze or fever coming on - get some peppermint tea in your system. Its trace elements of vitamin B, potassium and antioxidants can help your bodies uptake in nutrients to fight off any future illnesses.
Try: Bloom Tea Timeout Peppermint or Pukka Peppermint & Licorice Tea
There isn't many scents or flavours more festive than that of cinnamon, making it the perfect time of year to be sipping on a cup of warming cinnamon tea! Along with the taste, it also has some proven health benefits including being anti-fungal and antibacterial, which comes from the cinnamaldehyde which is naturally present in cinnamon. Used for many years in Chinese medicine and Ayurveda to treat things such as cold, indigestion and cramps.
There is a warning attached to drinking cinnamon tea, however, which comes heavily from the evidence that liver and kidney toxicity can occur after high exposure to high doses of coumarin (a fragrant substance found in high concentrations of cinnamon). However, this is only in excessive amounts. Pukka Teas explain:
"Our unique Three Cinnamon blend is made with Vietnamese (Cinnamomum aromaticum), Indonesian (C. burmanni) and Indian (C. bejolghota) cinnamon respectively. All non-verum cinnamons are also known rather generically as cassia cinnamon and are the most commonly consumed cinnamons in both Europe and the United States, as well as through most of India, China and elsewhere in Asia. As you may know, the coumarin content of this form of cinnamon tends to be higher when compared with the verum form (but all cinnamon species contain coumarin). Owing to its high coumarin content, its beneficial properties and its unique flavouring characteristics, we include these three types of cinnamon in our Three Cinnamon tea. It is safe for everyone to drink. Our risk-assessment based on EFSA safety factors show that you would need to drink over 42 cups of our Three Cinnamon tea a day for a few weeks for there to be any problem. Of course, no one is going to do that. In all of our planning, we assume that we will just drink three cups of any one type of tea a day."
Try: Pukka Three Cinnamon Tea or Pukka Vanilla Chai Tea
Without a doubt, if you are a tea drinker and you're having a bad day, you will be reaching for chamomile for a few minutes rest. 'Chamomile' means merely 'ground apple' and has been prized for years for its calming and soothing effects.
Its most popular use is to help promote sleep as it soothes the nervous system but also has other benefits including promoting healthy looking skin with its anti-inflammatory and anti-septic properties.
Try: TEATOX Pure Beauty Herbal Skincare Tea or Pukka Chamomile Vanilla & Manuka Honey Tea
Rich in vitamins, antioxidants and minerals, this sweet and fragrant tea, which means 'red bush', can only be found growing in one place in the world naturally, in the Cedarberg region of north-west Cape Town. The traditional method of harvesting the plant involves the leaves being bruised with hammers and being left to dry and ferment in the sun.
Packed with powerful antioxidants, flavonoids and polyphenols, rooibos tea can help protect and safeguard the body by fighting off free radicals. Along with antioxidants, rooibos tea also has a high mineral count, all of which are vital to health. You will find magnesium, essential for the nervous system, zinc, necessary for metabolism and iron, which is critical for helping blood and muscles distribute oxygen.
Try: Dr Jackson's Expedition Tea Bag or Pukka Rooibos & Honey Bush Tea
There are plenty more teas to try! Shop here for: Herbal Teas