Whether you have sore joints or poor circulation, there’s a tea for that, says medical herbalist Katie Pande
A cup of tea makes everything so much better – well it does if you’re British. From a morning pick me up to a soothing bed time relaxer, there is a tea for every occasion – and every ailment.
The spice turmeric has received its fair share of column inches over the last five years. And indeed, there is good evidence showing its star quality lies in its ability to reduce inflammation throughout the body, including, as shown in this 2013 study, in people with osteoarthritis.
According to some other studies, curcumin (the active ingredient found in turmeric) can help ease inflammation and swelling in people with arthritis.
Studies have also shown the protective anti-oxidant effects of turmeric on liver cells, acting as a natural support to the body’s cleansing and detoxification processes.
This is a herb that can help screen us from the damaging free radicals we are exposed to in a heavily polluted modern world.
The easiest way to get turmeric into your life? Trade in that mid-afternoon coffee for a turmeric tea pick-me-up. Try: Pukka Turmeric Gold
Herbs like nettle have been used traditionally to help balance blood sugar and small studies have found it could mimic the hormone insulin and aid blood sugar control while you’re fasting.
Plants such as nettle are also naturally high in the green pigment chlorophyll and are powerful anti-inflammatories that have been shown to protect skin cells and aid natural detoxification in the body.
Traditionally nettle has also been used to help various gastroinstestinal ailments such as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), constipation, diarrhoea and general stomach upset. Try: Pukka Cleanse
Although camomile is usually hailed as a tea taken before bed to help you sleep, in herbalist terms, it’s especially known for calming an anxious digestion, especially one aggravated by stress, and helping reduce symptoms associated with Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) such as bloating and cramping. Chamomile also has a specific ability to help relax tight muscles throughout the body helping us feel physically relaxed.
Conventional drug treatments for Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD) are often accompanied by substantial side effects, dependence, and withdrawal syndrome. A controlled study of chamomile extract, found that chamomile in fact reduced GAD symptoms over eight weeks.
Antispasmodic herbs such as aloe vera, chamomile and peppermint are smooth muscle relaxants that will help to reduce cramping symptoms if you have IBS or other gut issues.
A 2015 study researching the impact of Chamomile extract on IBS symptoms also found that none of the currently available drugs are globally effective in treating all IBS symptoms.
However, the study saw 45 participants take 20 camomile drops daily for four weeks. Participants were asked to fill in an IBS-associated symptoms questionnaire to specify abdominal pain intensity, bloating, nausea, stool consistency and altered bowel habits.
Those taking the camomile found their IBS symptoms significantly reduced and claimed that that the improving effects of camomile on all IBS symptoms shows it may have a positive effect on the development of IBS as well.
Try a herbal camomile tea before bed to help aid digestion and reduce symptoms of bloating overnight Try: Pukka Three Chamomile
if you’re feeling hot (and not in a good way), tea can help. When heat accumulates in the body it can make you intense and agitated, but herbs in the mint family naturally balance heat and irritation due to their ability to balance our inner thermostat, helping us feel cool, calm and collected. Try Pukka Three Mint
Ginger is fragrant and warming boosting circulation and energising the whole body and mind. It directly stimulates blood flow and is excellent for those who suffer with poor circulation or slow digestive metabolism.
Ginger is a common spice that is great to cook with but it is also an anti-inflammatory to treat nausea. It contains a substance called gingerol, which has powerful medicinal properties. In the history of medicine, ginger has been traditionally used to help digestion, ease nausea and help combat common colds and the flu.
Ginger is related to turmeric and, like turmeric, has key anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects. As well as the problems listed above, ginger is used to treat aches and joint pains, and morning sickness too. Furthermore, ginger is a thermogenic agent which helps with fat burning and boosts circulation. Try: Pukka Lemongrass and Ginger
Fennel is a well known vegetable and herb that can be used as a household remedy for a variety of health problems.
Fennel is known to help with digestive disorders such as gas, acid stomach, IBS, cramps and even motion sickness.
The popular vegetable stimulates our digestive juices whilst also helping to calm typical symptoms of indigestion.
But even if you haven’t eaten too much, it could help to have a cup after dinner as fennel tea has also been shown to directly increase levels of digestive enzymes, ensuring that we digest our food as effectively as possible.
Also a diuretic, fennel can increase the frequency and amount of urination which may help to remove toxic substances from the body. Try Pukka Herbs Night Time Capsules, £7.45
The herb valerian has been shown to temporarily alleviate sleeplessness brought on by mild anxiety. It’s also described as grounding and calming for an over-active body and mind, relaxing the nervous system and encouraging a refreshing night’s sleep.
Valerian specifically helps improve the amount and quality of deep sleep we rget, helping us to feel more refreshed and revitalised on waking. Try Pukka Night Time
Shatavari is a traditional Ayurvedic herb that’s been used for centuries to support women’s health and address hormonal imbalances.
It’s renowned for its ability to improve levels of ‘good’ oestrogen in the body and balance female hormones, reducing symptoms such as vaginal dryness, hot flushes, low mood and premenstrual tension, and helping to ease the menopause transition.
Shatavari encourages hormonal balance and supports women through the ups and downs of their monthly cycle. It’s been used in Ayurvedic medicine for thousands of years because of its abilities to balance and harmonise oestrogen levels in the body. Try: Pukka Womankind capsules
Holy basil, also known as Tulsi, tea is an adaptogen known to help lower cortisol levels. Just one cup of holy basil tea can leave you feeling calmer.
Tulsi is revered in Indian culture and is seen as the embodiment of the Hindu god of wellbeing. Drinking and meditating with this herb is believed to bring you closer to enlightenment.
These traditional beliefs are now supported by strong evidence and research that shows its ability to improve cognitive functions such as memory and learning as well as reducing levels of emotional stress. Try: Pukka Tulsi Clarity
A punchy, powerful alternative to your morning espresso. Matcha combines stimulating and restorative effects of with the mood boosting and energising properties.
Although matcha contains caffeine, it will boost your brain function without the side effects (such as nervous energy) of coffee. Therefore, matcha is a great afternoon pick-me-up if you need that extra energy.
Matcha is a great addition to your diet for weight loss or weight management too. As well as containing almost no calories, matcha can boost metabolism and therefore helps burn fat.
Indeed, one study, conducted by the University of Birmingham, found that taking green tea extract supplements while exercising increased fat burning by 17%.
Research has also proven that matcha is higher in anti-oxidants than green tea and specific constituents known as catechins increase mood boosting hormones such as serotonin. Try: Pukka Lean matcha green
If you’ve always wanted to make money from your healthy passion, Healthista’s upcoming Health To Wealth event is your chance to learn how to grow – or even just start – your side hustle into a business.
Healthista have teamed up with luxury hotel brand Pullman Hotels & Resorts to launch a new wellness entrepreneurship-focused initiative and event – Health To Wealth – to help budding start-ups bring their businesses to life.
The live event will see Healthista readers, consumers, influencers, media and businesspeople alike, come together to share and learn.
During the event, selected early-stage health businesses and ideas will be put to the test Dragon’s Den-style before a panel of industry experts including BBC Dragon – and Healthista investor – Touker Suleyman.
When: June 13th, 2019
Where: The Shaw Theatre, Pullman London St Pancras, 100-110 Euston Road, King’s Cross, London, NW1 2AJ
Tickets: £15 from this link. Entry price includes a wellbeing goodie bag worth over £50.
Successful entrepreneurs from all areas of wellness including nutrition, fitness, and fashion will take part in a panel discussion focused on sharing their experience, tips and tricks for starting and growing a business in the wellness space.
This will be followed by a Dragon’s Den-style format, inviting up-and-coming wellness entrepreneurs to pitch for support to further the success of their own businesses.
The Health To Wealth entrepreneur’s panel includes:
Touker Suleyman, BBC Dragon, multi-millionaire behind brands including Finery, Ghost and Hawes & Curtis and Healthista investor.
Emlyn Brown, Vice-President Well-Being, Luxury and Premium Brands at Accor Hotels.
Ashley Verma, founder of London’s barre fitness studio DEFINE London.
Anna Magee, Healthista Editor and CEO and multi-award winning health journalist.
Charing the panel will be Anni Hood, co-founder and chief executive at Well Intelligence – a research, insights and market evidence platform aimed at helping wellbeing businesses grow.
Tickets to join the audience to learn from the successes and hurdles overcome by the panel of speakers are £15 per person and available to purchase from here.