In winter, when the weather is cold it can be difficult for us to take in enough fluid, so herbal teas are wonderful because they’re warm and keep us hydrated, at the same time as giving us some really good health benefits from the herbs we’re taking in with the tea.
Here are three warming teas to try…
1. Lemon, ginger and honey
This is a really simple cold and flu remedy that has been used for many years to calm down the symptoms. The lemon and honey are very soothing and packed with antioxidants, and the vitamin C helps you fight off the cold. Ginger is very warming, so it’s great for winter. In Chinese Medicine, ginger is part of a group of herbs that help vent out pathogens from the superficial level of the body – that surface level is where we see colds and flus entering.
2. Red rose petal
This is a really simple tea and one of my favourites as a Chinese medicine practitioner. It’s made of dried rose petals, so when you pour the water on top it has a beautiful aroma, like potpourri. It’s very warming, it’s a chi tonic, and it helps to move any blockages, particularly in the middle section of the body. For women, this can be great for menstrual cramps.
Chai is so popular, but in cafes these days it is often made with sugar-heavy syrups and powders rather than using the herbs. The herbs used in chai – like cinnamon, cloves, star anise, peppercorns, chilli, fennel – are good for warming and boosting blood circulation, and are also good tonics for the digestive system.