Discover Teas

Customer Service: 866-897-4669 or 757-847-5190
Kenneth Roberts

Kenneth Roberts

Friday, 21 August 2015 19:35

The Herbalists' First Aid Kit

Chances are good that you have a first aid kit. Maybe in your car or under the bathroom sink. It could be as simple as a small box with bandages and some aspirin, a few ace wraps, scissors and gauze patches, tape. All of these have a purpose, but whether you are surviving in the wild, camping for a weekend, or hanging out at home there are many simple herbs to keep around for a variety of needs.

Lavender: I consider lavender to be an almost universal herb for health and wellbeing. Its anxiolytic properties help with anxiety and stress (as in our Earthbound Angel house blend); it can act as a neurosedative to help with sleep (it is actually a component of our Sleepeeze WellTeaing blend); its antimicrobial properties make it ideal as a natural antiseptic and antifungal; and also helps ward off insects. Lavender can also aid in healing burns; however, you should always test it (and any other skin treatment) on a small unaffected part of the body first to make sure your body does not have an idiosyncratic reaction to it.

Lemongrass: Lemongrass, which has anti-inflammatory properties, can be infused as a tea (such as in our Slimming Goddess Oolong or Peaceful Pathways house blends), or simmered on its own for 20 minutes or until the liquid is reduced by half. You can take this concentrate and mix it with water in a spray bottle to help repel insects, soothe insect bites, and use as an antiseptic for minor scratches and wounds.

White Willow Bark: White willow bark is a highly concentrated source of salicylic acid, which is what aspirin was derived from. As such, it is a potent natural analgesic and antipyretic; great for pain relief and lowering fevers. In bark form with all of its natural constituents, it metabolizes easily in the body and is more gentle on the liver than most over-the-counter NSAIDs. However, it should still be used in moderation as some people can be overly sensitive to it. I use white willow bark in our ArthriTea WellTeaing blend for joint and muscle pain relief.

Dandelion: As I mentioned in my dandelion blog, there are so many uses for this wonderful giver of healing. It cleanses the blood and supports the liver, kidneys and bladder in doing their job more efficiently. By itself, it can be made into a tea that may help with digestive issues, but the taste can be bitter. This is why I blend it with rooibos, honeybush, and other health-promoting herbs in my ArthriTea, Gentle Cleanse, Happy Heart, and Lymph Mover WellTeaing blends. Healthy can taste good!

Chamomile : Chamomile is mother nature’s calming wonder. It can help with digestive issues like an upset stomach or intestinal cramping. It also has an amazing ability to calm the nervous system, which can help with stress in survival situations or just helping you get to sleep. Chamomile is also calming for the skin, it is great to help with an itchy rash or hives and can even help when used as a poultice for poison ivy or poison oak. We carry it separate but it is a crucial part of our AnxieTea and Sleepeeze blends.

With just a little research you can cut down on the number of over-the-counter medications you rely on, and also have another option in case of emergencies. Just remember, whether herbal or not, first aid kits are not a substitute for serious medical treatment and should not be treated as such. Also, when you are building an herbal first aid kit, be sure that your herbs (if dried) were at least picked fresh from reputable sources, and to be most effective, make sure they do not grow stale!

Wednesday, 08 July 2015 13:44

Hibiscus Puts a Little Zing in Your Life!

From ancient Egypt to the Caribbean, wherever it grows, hibiscus is known for its cooling, refreshing taste and a variety of health benefits. If you have ever enjoyed a lemon or raspberry zinger tea you have experienced the tart, refreshing crispness of hibiscus. Not to mention its delightful red color. It's as if hibiscus was made for summer! 

Hibiscus provides a variety of dense minerals, organic acids, and packs a solid vitamin C punch that gives it the signature tart taste. Vitamin C is known to be helpful for colds, respiratory tract infections, and may be helpful with loss of appetite. Hibiscus is often used for the gentle diuretic effect it has which is helpful with edema and water retention. A few cups a week may help maintain healthy hydration and prevent unwanted water retention.

Historically hibiscus has been associated with the ability to help with blood disorders, heart disease, circulatory problems and stomach irritations. The acids are also a natural antibiotic; having antimicrobial compounds that are effective for digestive health, and can even get rid of worms according to Grandma. (I always trust Grandma.)

A trial conducted in 2010 involving 222 patients with metabolic problems, focused on hibiscus’ ability to aid in blood sugar regulation and cholesterol balancing. The study reported that “Hibiscus tea supports normal blood sugar levels and helps in cholesterol maintenance.” Hibiscus has also been studied for the high levels of antioxidants it contains in the form of Anthocyanins, a powerful flavonoid. One of the main effects reported is softer more flexible skin with less wrinkles! 

So whether you’re looking for an elixir of youth, wanting to balance cholesterol and blood sugar, or simply wanting to put some zing in your cup, try a blend with some hibiscus. Some of my all time favorites are Pina Colada Fruit, Lady Hannah’s Whole Fruit, and Peaceful Pathways. Of course, it’s also fantastic all on its own!

News and Promos Subscribe