I don’t think I talk about how much tea I drink on this site.
Confession: I drink at least 5-8 cups of tea a day.
After my morning cup (or pot- but who’s counting) of coffee, I try not to touch the stuff for the rest of the day. Sometimes I need a caffeine buzz and will just go for it, but most days I find myself heading to the tea cupboard or seeing what bags I have in my purse I’m carrying with me (Yes, I carry tea bags in all of my purses in a variety of flavors so I never have to go without). I don’t know why it is that I’ve turned out like this- I never purposefully tried to only have coffee in the morning and tea the rest of the day- it’s just what my body craves and I decide to give it.
The brilliant part about it though is that there are so many wonderful benefits to tea, whether you’re sipping on a simple herbal tea, or drinking green and rooibos. Today, I got lucky. I was invited to a tea tasting down at Silk Road where we explored the mysterious world that is the lovely Rooibos tea. We tried three different kinds, and tried one of them as a tea latte.
So a little info about some of my favorite teas..
Rooibos: In Afrikaans it translates to “red bush” and was made popular by South Africa. Though they have been drinking it for centuries in South Africa, it is new to the North American scene and is only just starting to get buzz in the health industries. It is usually a favorite tea of those trying to stop consuming caffeine as it is quite robust, similar to black tea. Rooibos tea is loaded with antioxidants and also has a number of phenolic compounds. In traditional medicine Rooibos was used to treat allergies, asthma, colic and skin problems like eczema; today it is consumed for it’s lovely benefits ranging from helping relieve nervous tension to allergies and digestive aid. Rooibos is sweet and nutty, and definitely worth trying the next time you see it in either a grocery store or coffee shop.
In South Africa, they are trying to restrict the use of the name Rooibos to the area in which its grown, making it similar to the Champagne region in France and Port region in Portugal.
Green: Green teas are produced primarily in China and was brought to Japan by Chinese Buddhist monks sometime in the 8th century. Green tea was drank by monks in earlier centuries to aid in their concentration during meditation. Today, many of us drink it for very different reasons. Green tea has been used to treat everything from cancer, to multiple sclerosis; help with Alzheimers and Parkinson’s disease; reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease and heart attacks; and also helps to raise your metabolism and increase fat burning.
The list of benefits seems like it could go on forever. I like to have a green tea mid morning at school as the light caffeination keeps me awake, and paying attention (most days) and all the great benefits are too hard to pass up- I’d feel like I was missing out.
Herbal: My list could go forever listing all the wonders that the herbal tea world has to offer you. My flavor of the month for herbal tea is ginger by day and peppermint by night, so I’ll give you a little run down of these benefits, and leave mysteries of the rest to you. Rooibos tea is also herbal- Herbal generally means that it has no caffeine.
Peppermint tea is not only refreshing, but it also boasts a long list of health benefits primarily around digestion. Everything from irritable bowel syndrome, nausea and flatulence can be aided by peppermint. It also fights stress, controls mild asthma, clears congestion (related to colds), fights bad breath and also helps control muscle pain (and some chronic pain). Whenever I have a stomach that is bothering me, I always get peppermint- it’s fresh tasting and never seems to be out of season (which is how I feel with some heavily spiced teas).
Ginger tea on the other hand, is a completely different ball game, both taste wise and health benefit wise. Ginger tea is spicey and delicious, I find that it wakes me up even without the caffeine. Ginger root, which ginger tea is made from, is known to be a good source of B6 vitamins, magnesium, and potassium. The hotter and spicier it is, the more benefits you will have. What are the benefits? Ginger tea aids in respiratory disorders (allergies, colds- clearing sinuses), relieves sore throats, reduces gas, reduces excessive sweat, decreases blood sugar, relieves menstrual cramps, and freshens your breath (I can vouch for the last three).
So there you have it, a little bit of food for thought as you sip your next cup of tea.
The lovely people at Silk Road, didn’t just invite me to a tea tasting, they also invited a lucky reader. Silk Road and I are giving away 2 things. Winner 1 will get 2-40 cup tins of tea, and winner 2 (someone who lives or is planning on coming out to the west coast of BC) will get 1-40 cup tin of tea with a 2 for 1 ticket to a tea tasting at silk road (schedule included in the pack up).
Here’s how to enter:
- You must leave a comment here telling me why you’d like the tea, and what your favorite tea is (also- tell me if you are planning a trip near here so I can determine which prize to give you if you win)
Then (one of the following):
- Follow me on Twitter
- Link this contest back on a blog post of yours
- Add me to your blogroll
I will be choosing the winner on February 10th at 7pm, so make sure to get your entries in!