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Nutrition

Sip away your stress with a revitalising herbal tea

With more people realising the benefits of herbal teas, it's no wonder that sales of the organic beverage have soared recently.

Research from Mintel revealed that green tea bag sales have increased by 83 per cent in the last two years, while fruity and herbal teas have become ten per cent more popular among the British public.

Certain teas are ideal for when you're feeling tired, stressed or lethargic, with chamomile tea in particular being well known for aiding sleep.

Chamomile is also used to ease period pains because it is thought to increase levels of glycine in your wee, which helps tackle muscle spasms. It contains antibacterial properties that can be used to fight colds.

According to herbalist and nutritional therapist Andrew Johnson, herbal teas can be used as a detox aid because many of them act as cleansers inside the body.

"Some herbal teas would have a diuretic effect, which could be cleansing. Some would be cleansing because they are what's called diaphoretic - they create heat in the body and cause sweating," he explained.

"Some are more laxative, or help the digestion, bowel and liver - they would be mildly detoxifying in that way."

Another type of tea that is said to have health benefits is rooibos, or red bush tea, which comes from South Africa and is rich in antioxidants, low in tannins and is caffeine-free.

A recent study from the University of Stellenbosch found that rooibos tea hampers the production of cortisol in the body, which reduces the body's response to stress.

"Because Rooibos anecdotally is known to have a soothing effect, it prompted us to look if it had any effect on cortisol, the stress hormone," explained lead researcher Professor Amanda Swart.

She added that further studies are required to determine whether rooibos has a soothing effect on tea drinkers but pointed out that the hot beverage "significantly" lowers the production of the stress hormone in the adrenal glands.

Got a friend's birthday coming up? Give her eco-friendly gifts in the form of a Fushi Tea Infuser and a selection of herbal drinks.

Posted by Matilda Jones

 
 
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