My Top 6 Herbal Tea Blends

I’ve been drinking tea forever. Most of the time, the immediate response from friends is that they prefer coffee. I get that, and then I ask them to try my tea and they always love it! The most frequently asked question I get is what kind of tea I drink, and where I get it. I’ve been hooked on herbal tea since I was younger, and I’ve been on a journey over the past few years trying to learn how to use herbs for healing. I’ve made it easy on you and consolidated my favorite herbal teas, tips and secrets into one post! Your welcome.

I remember going to voice lessons in high school. When I would get sick, my teacher would give us this herbal tea that was pure magic.  I can’t think of anything better to cure a cold than a hot cup of herbal tea (with a shot of whiskey). When it snows, I’m in the kitchen boiling water for tea. When friends come over in the evening, I have tea ready. The addiction is so real that on our honeymoon, we actually made a special trip to this little hut where the women were blending teas into bags to sell, and of course I purchased multiple boxes to bring back.

#1 Rule: BUY ORGANIC

You always want to make sure that your tea is added to the organic part of your shopping list. Don’t go cheap on your teas. Most people don’t know that most conventional tea companies don’t wash their herbs before packaging their tea bags. Isn’t that crazy? Herbs are sprayed with pesticides and other chemicals, and the last thing anyone needs is to  drink more chemicals on top of all the processed foods that we eat.

There was actually an independent, third party analysis done by a firm that found out Celestial Seasonings teas contained high amounts of pesticide residue well over the average U.S. FDA standards. They’re not the only brand, this is actually the case for many of the well-known tea brands you see in stores. Steeping pesticides into hot boiling water is not something that you want to do and obviously defeats the purpose of drinking the tea for health benefits. It’s important to know where your herbal teas are sourced from. Do a little research, the knowledge is literally at our fingertips and everyone knows how to use google.

**Before I dive into the details, I would like to state that I’m not a doctor, and I am not responsible for the use of any teas that are mentioned below. As with all supplements, use in moderation. If you’re suffering from a specific medical condition, talk to your doctor.**

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[1] Chamomile | Lavender

This is a staple that I keep around the house mainly because it tastes and smells amazing. Anyone who uses lavender scented candles, soaps, and oils already knows how therapeutic just inhaling the scent is. It’s an immediate sense of relaxation and calmness. Chamomile is also a tea that almost anyone, even non-tea drinkers can enjoy plain with some honey and lemon.  Chamomile is anti-inflammatory and antioxidant-rich in nature, which is great for any aspect of the body that has inflammation, including your stomach and digestive tract, bloating, cramping, and even your skin! In fact, it can can actually be applied topically for soothing skin eczema, and under your eyes for bags in case you didn’t know! (However, if I’m going to use tea bags on my eyes, I recommend green tea bags over chamomile).

Lavender helps with general headaches, migraines, anxiety, joints, and releases tension – making anything lavender -scented a product that needs to be utilized in your house more often. The good news is that you can buy chamomile and lavender tea pre-blended through the shops I’ve listed below!

[2] Ginseng

The health benefits in ginseng actually come directly from the root, and possess numerous anti-carcinogenic properties that inhibit the growth of cancer cells. They lower blood sugar levels for those struggling with borderline and full-blown Type II Diabetes. They also assist with fertility, stress, mental performance, and also help boost the immune system. There are two types of ginseng teas you can buy; white ginseng (dried and peeled) and red ginseng (unpeeled root and steamed before drying). The main difference between the two types is that white ginseng goes through a refined process, and red ginseng (also known as Korean ginseng) is processed differently to preserve more of it’s natural potency. Both are fine to use, and both are easily accessible! It’s basically cold and flu season, so I’ll probably be drinking more of this soon, but it’s a good tea to keep some ginseng in the cabinets this winter. Personal preference – I always use honey with ginseng since it has such a strong taste.

[3] Spearmint

16729316-samples-of-loose-leaf-green-white-black-and-herbal-tea-in-metal-cans-on-canvas-background-Stock-PhotoSpearmint tea is the tea that I generally use to mix with another tea for flavor since some
of the other teas have very strong, herbal tastes that take a while to get used to. The biggest health benefit from drinking spearmint tea is that it’s energizing. It’s amazing for digestion, it’s great for women who struggle with ovarian cysts, it’s anti-inflammatory, it’s known for clearing up sinuses during allergy season, and it’s incredibly immune boosting! The iron content in a single serving of spearmint is more than 100% of the daily recommended amount, which helps prevent anemia and increases circulation throughout the body!

[4] Chai (aka the coffee replacement)

THIS is your “go-to” tea if you’re looking for a lot of flavor since chai teas have so many different spices added in. If you don’t drink tea, or don’t really love tea and are trying to adapt, start with this one! If you’re a new tea drinker, this will probably be your coffee replacement if you’re looking for a change, and most people like to add in steamed milk for taste (which you can also do with lavender tea and it pairs super well). Chai is a staple, black tea to keep in the house for company. Most spiced chai teas generally include cinnamon, clove, pepper, nutmeg, ginger, fennel, and a few other varieties of spices. Its overall health benefits cover a little bit of everything, but it’s best known to alleviate cold symptoms, increase circulation, decrease fatigue, fight off free radicals with its antioxidant properties, and it’s definitely known as a digestive aid!

[5] Red Raspberry Leaf | Red Clover

In my opinion, I think every woman of child-bearing age should be using these two herbs in their teas. I cannot stress to you how beneficial these two teas have been to me personally. You can find this tea pre-blended and packaged in most of the pregnancy teas you see around. Pregnant or not, both red raspberry and red clover are great for fertility and maintaining a healthy reproductive system if you’re planning to have babies in the future! Red Clover is high in both calcium and magnesium, aids in kidney and liver health, and is surprisingly great for acne. It has been known to help women with blocked fallopian tubes, irregular menstruation and unexplained infertility. Red Raspberry Leaf is known to improve poor egg health, aids in the prevention of miscarriages by strengthening the uterus, and is known for it’s healing effects for those with endometriosis and ovarian cysts. I literally can’t say enough good things about these two herbs, and I think most women in their mid-twenties to mid-thirties could benefit from them so long as they’re cleared with your physician first!

[6] Echinacea

The use of Echinacea is actually being used as a natural cancer treatment alongside, and in place of some conventional treatments. This herb is probably more well-known among regular and non-tea drinkers since it’s also available in pill form and is taken for general colds. It’s used to fight infection and boost the immune system, acts as a natural pain reliever, can be used as a natural laxative, has natural anti-inflammatory properties, and has been known to improve respiratory issues such as asthma, sinusitis, the common cold, and sore throats. I’ll probably grab some of this soon before all of colds and flu symptoms start spreading this season, but thought it work including on this list.

WHERE I BUY

Mountain Rose Herbs

  • Hello Variety! They offer black, herbal, flowering, red, green, white, and chai tea blends!
  • Additional non-tea items for purchase include tea accessories, tea pots, oils, organic body care, elixirs, syrups, tinctures, and essential oils and accessories!
  • They’re very certification-conscious. They’ve taken extra measures to ensure their overall quality is top-notch. You can check out their website for the list of awards and certifications they hold here.
  • All of their teas w/ ginseng are forest-grown in the Appalachian Mountains, and they locally source all of their herbs.
  • They offer herbal education classes, which I’ve thought about taking many times.
  • Since all of their teas are loose-leaf, they sell by the ounce starting at 4oz for $10. They’re  little more expensive, but worth it!
  • This company goes the extra mile with packaging, they have quick shipments, and great customer service!

Traditional Medicinals

  • Easy to access at almost any grocery store – even Walmart. When I was younger you couldn’t find these anywhere. I had to go to a health food shop to purchase.
  • They use high-quality, organic herbs (98.9% organic).
  • Taste great, but aren’t super “herby”.
  • 100% of the electricity used at the processing plants comes from renewable energy. BONUS if you care about this kind of thing.
  • They’re budget friendly. A box of 16 tea bags runs approximately $4, they’ve come a long way on price now that they mass produce.
  • This company offers a wide variety of individual herbal teas as well as sampler packs to try new flavors.
  • They try to source each herb from its native environment and region to maintain the original chemical compounds of the herb. (This is extremely important if you’re drinking specific teas for illnesses or remedies to underlying health problems)

Yogi

  • I buy Yogi brand teas only when I’m out of everything else. There’s nothing wrong with their teas, but I generally prefer other brands because they tend to be much higher quality.
  • Yogi does offer a large variety of blends rather than just individual herbs. (I.e. bedtime, calming, healthy skin, cold and flu, etc.). Almost anywhere else you purchase good, organic herbs, you’re going to be blending yourself, or having them blend for you.
  • Yogi brand teas are sold in most grocery stores and the method to mass production, from what I’ve read is still monitored to maintain good quality.

 

LOCAL SHOUTOUT!

TonicLogo-1024x784

Because I love to shop local, I also wanted to mention the cutest little shop that I discovered last year in Shepherdstown, WV. I buy from them frequently, probably more than anywhere else because, well it’s local.  The downside is that they don’t offer an online shop via their website – Boooo. However, since may of my readers live close by, that won’t matter to you anyway!

If you live in the DC Metropolitan area and tend to make your way out to Harpers Ferry, or anywhere in the Eastern Panhandle, check out the Tonic Therapeutic Herb Shop and Elixir Bar in Shepherdstown! It does NOT disappoint. Good food, good local shopping, amazing herbal teas! Ask me where else to visit if you’re making a day trip. The first time I walked in, I told them what I was looking for, received a mini education on a few different herbs, and left with 3 blended mixes! They were super friendly as well.

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If you ever have any questions about the teas I use, or want to hear more on the resources I use to find new products,  I’m an open book! I’d also love to hear what you’re drinking these days.

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