All Posts By

Heather Haynes

Tea Gifts

Bake This For Your Tea Obsessed Mom for Mothers Day

April 18, 2022

With Mother’s Day around the corner, what better way to show your love for her than with something you made yourself? We all love our Mom and Mother’s day is the perfect time to show her how much we actually love and care for her, and most importantly appreciate her. This sweet and simple earl grey tea cake is the perfect treat for your mom on this special day. It’s easy to pull together and is so delicious she will think you had it professionally made.

This earl grey cake is so elevated yet so easy to make. Making the tea infusion for this cake is as simple as steeping your tea in milk before adding it to the cake mix. All you need to do is steep your loose leaf tea in whole milk. Once steeped, you strain and add to your cake mixture. Viola! The tea flavor lends itself perfectly to a simple vanilla cake. The best part? You probably have all the ingredients in your kitchen right now! The flavor is light, sweet and perfect for breakfast, or lunch or really any time.  Because cake needs no excuse does it?

How to Make The Cake

Making this cake is just like making any other cake with the acceptation of steeping your tea before adding in your milk! We used a bundt pan but if you do not have one of those lying around, one 9-inch round will work, too!

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup of butter
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs (at room temperature)
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 2 cups of flour
  • 4 tsp of baking powder
  • 1 cup of whole milk
  • 2 tbsp of loose leaf Earl Grey
  • Powdered sugar as topping

How to prepare

  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Prepare a Bundt pan by buttering the pan and lightly dusting with flour. Set aside.
  3. Heat up the 1 cup of milk (you can simply microwave your milk or put it in a pan on low heat), then add the tea leaves to the hot milk and let steep at least 10 minutes. Strain the milk and set aside.
  4. In a mixing bowl, cream together the butter and sugar.
  5. Add the eggs, one at a time.
  6. Then add vanilla, and mix well.
  7. In a separate bowl, combine the flour, and baking powder.
  8. To the butter mix, add 1/3 of the flour mix, then 1/2 of the tea milk. Repeat until all combined.
  9. Pour into the prepared Bundt pan.
  10. Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the centre comes out clean.
  11. Once the cake has baked, let it cool for about 10 minutes in the pan, then turn the cake out onto a plate, and sprinkle with icing sugar.

Don’t have earl grey laying around? This recipe can easily have substitutions for the type of tea used! Our recommendations are lavender, chamomile or any citrus-y flavor teas like cinnamon orange spice.

Not in the mood for baking? We have you covered. Here are some simple ideas that you can do to pair with tea time!

Tea sandwiches

Dainty finger food is a staple at tea parties from Victorian style to modern. You can make your own sandwich fillings and serve them in triangles of crustless bread. Fillings may include chicken salad, salmon, curried egg salad, and turkey!

Jam-filled biscuits

Get store-bought jam-filled biscuits in flavors like strawberry, marmalade, and cherry. Then, serve them in pretty silver trays.

Mini fruit tarts

Tea time food offerings without the presence of sweets are unthinkable. When it comes to sweets, mini fruit tarts are a fabulous offering to snack on!

Tea Health Benefits Types of Tea

Ditch Your Energy Drink for This Healthier Alternative

April 18, 2022
Yerba-Mate

Energy drinks can generate side effects such as insomnia, nervousness and tachycardia; while the energizing effect from Yerba Mate is 100% natural and its many benefits come from nature itself. Yerba mate is a natural drink that increases your energy levels; but it’s far from being a commercial energy drink. This ancient, natural beverage is made from the leaves of the Yerba Mate tree. Although it also contains caffeine and other substances that act on the central nervous system; this energizing effect comes from nature itself, not from artificial manufacturing. Yerba mate can also be a great alternative to coffee, too!

What is Yerba Mate?

There are only a handful of plants in the world that produce caffeine and yerba mate is one of them! Along with tea, coffee, cacao, kola (or cola) and guarana, the yerba mate herb is used to produce a caffeinated beverage. While prepared as an infusion to create a tea-like beverage, yerba mate contains no actual tea leaves. Yerba mate is an herb native to South America and is used to make the national drink of Argentina, Paraguay, Uraguay and Southern Brazil. In fact, yerba mate is consumed 6 to 1 over coffee in these countries. Yerba mate is often described as earthy, vegetal, herbaceous and bittersweet. Imagine a fresh rainforest floor and you can likely picture the flavor of yerba mate.

What is Yerba Mate Made Of?

The yerba mate tea is brewed at home by adding hot water to the dried leaves from the Ilex Paraguariensis tree, which only grows in South America. It does not contain fat or sugar; and has very little calories, carbs and sodium. Beyond that, Yerba Mate is a wonderful source of vitamins (especially in the B group) minerals (potassium, magnesium, iron) and antioxidants (polyphenols, saponins, caffeoyl). Yerba mate also naturally contains stimulant agents like caffeine, theobromine, and theophylline; this is why it is a great source of natural energy.

Health Concerns with Commercial Energy Drinks

Energy drinks often contain five times the amount of caffeine as soft drinks. This amount of caffeine can cause nervousness, anxiety, headaches, stomachaches, hyperactivity, insomnia, dehydration, accelerated heart rates, and in extreme cases seizures and strokes. Most energy drinks contain an amount of sugar that exceeds the recommended daily allowance and potentially contributes to an increased risk of type 2 diabetes and obesity in sedentary individuals.

How to Prepare Yerba Mate

Mate is a versatile drink and there are many ways of preparing it, depending on the type of yerba mate and liquid you use. There is a huge variety of yerba: with or without stems, finely ground or roughly cut, flavored, sweetened, blended with other herbs. Mate can be drunk with water (hot or cold), milk or even juice. However, the most popular and traditional way of preparing mate is plain, with hot water. Here’s how to prepare yerba mate.

Yerba with stems: If you are a beginner or if you prefer a more mild flavor, yerba with stems is the way to go.
Yerba without stems: If you want a strong and more bitter flavor, this must be your choice. It holds the flavor longer and is the most popular type of yerba in Uruguay and South of Brazil.

What you need:

  1. Yerba Mate
  2. Bombilla (metal straw)
  3. Mate gourd (or mug)
  4. Lukewarm water and hot water
  5. Thermometer for accuracy

Instructions:

The traditional way:

  1. Fill gourd with yerba – Fill 2/3 to 3/4 of the gourd with yerba and slant it at 45-degree angle. If you are using yerba without stems, cover the top of the gourd and shake it up and down, to remove the small particles of the yerba before slanting it (45 degrees angle)
  2. Add lukewarm water – Pour lukewarm water as close as the wall of the gourd on the lower half of the slant of yerba. Looking at the mate from above, you will see a half-filled with water, and half dry. Wait until the water is absorbed by the yerba (1 minute).
  3. Repeat but with hot water – Repeat this process but this time with hot water – around 176 Fahrenheit or lower. It is not recommended to use water at a higher temperature than that because it could burn the yerba, affecting its taste and performance.
  4. Put the bombilla –Put the bombilla (covering the top with thumb) on the same lower side of the yerba, on a digging motion, and pressing until you reach the bottom of the gourd.
  5. Press the yerba with the bombilla – Press the yerba with the bombilla, creating two differentiated levels: one higher and dry, and other lower and wet.
  6. Add hot water to the lower side – Add hot water to the lower side, aiming as close as possible to the bombilla to avoid the higher (and dry) part of the yerba slant to get wet.
  7. Your mate is ready – Just drink it using the bombilla and repeat step 6 as many times as you want.

No gourd or bombilla? No problem!

First you will need a tea strainer, tea infuser, or teapot. If you have one at home, you can prepare yerba mate just like you would any other tea by filling it up with looseleaf yerba and steeping it in hot water (1 tablespoon per 8 ounces of water).

Tips:

  • Never use boiling water. Temperatures of around 140-170ºF work best
  • For every 8 ounces of fluid, use 1 tablespoon of yerba (add less or more to adjust to your own liking)
Tea Guides Tea Health Benefits

Time to Relax: The Best Teas for Stress and Anxiety

April 13, 2022
Anxiety and stress relief

The act of taking a moment to prepare a cup of tea and slow down can help to relieve stress, reduce anxiety, and leave you feeling a little more balanced. The type of tea you consume can also help reduce these feelings. Anxiety affects over 40 million people in the US alone. If you have experienced stress, anxiety, trouble sleeping and more, you may be looking for new ways to alleviate symptoms. A cup of tea might help relieve stress and anxiety, and could help you get better sleep. Here are our top teas to help!

Matcha

Most teas made from the camellia sinensis plant contain some amount of L-theanine, a unique amino acid that promotes relaxation and stress relief. In particular, matcha has even higher levels of L-theanine than other teas, the result of the shaded growth period the tea undergoes before harvest. The combination of caffeine and L-theanine is known for producing a calm, meditative state and what matcha enthusiasts often refer to as a body high. Matcha does have caffeine in it so be careful if you are sensitive to caffeine. If you are, this should not be drank before you wind down for bed.

Peppermint

Peppermint tea is a refreshing sip that is delicious both hot and cold. It acts as a natural antispasmodic and sedative to help relax both your mind and body. Plus, peppermint has shown to be great for your digestive system, which can be helpful if your stress or anxiety levels tend to bring on tummy troubles. Because it helps to relax muscles, peppermint tea can also help to soothe tension headaches brought on by stress and anxiety, even just by inhaling the scent of a warm mug of peppermint tea. Plus, if you’re feeling anxious and overwhelmed by all you have to get done, peppermint tea can be a great option to give you a natural energy boost while also leaving you feeling calm and balanced. Our ginger peppermint tea is a great tea to sip on during those cold winter months to warm you up and help with an upset stomach!

Green

Loaded with antioxidants, green tea is often thought to be synonymous with physical health – but it’s great for your mental health, too. Green tea is one of the best teas to drink to help with anxiety. One of the many antioxidants it contains, a flavonoid called epicatechin, helps to protect your brain from oxidative damage, helping to combat the negative effects that stress has on your body and can also be helpful for improving memory. Again, since this is naturally caffeinated, be aware when you are consuming if you are sensitive to caffeine!

Chamomile

We could not make a list of best teas to de-stress without chamomile! With a smooth flavor that makes it easy to sip on, chamomile tea is one of the most popular tea flavors. Because it’s an herbal tea, the caffeine-free blend won’t spike your anxiety levels, and can be sipped on at any time of day. Chamomile tea is made from dried chamomile flowers, and comes in two varieties: German chamomile and Roman chamomile. The tea helps to naturally increase serotonin and melatonin levels in your body, leaving you feeling relaxed without feeling drowsy. Plus, it can help relieve tension by relaxing muscle aches and soothing headaches often associated with stress and anxiety. 

Passionflower

Passionflower tea is calming for the nervous system and a great way to reduce anxiety and stress and promote more restful sleep. It has long been used as a natural remedy for anxiety and to increase GABA levels by the Aztecs, Incas and the South American Indians. It is also a great source of phytochemicals and alkaloids, which work to help reduce stress chemicals in the body to help you feel calmer and more relaxed. It’s also great for sleep and helps to relieve inflammation protecting your body from all those negative aspects of stress like skin issues, digestive troubles, and restlessness.

If you want information on how to brew the perfect cup of tea check out our brewing guide!

Tea History & Culture

Tea Wellness: Mindful Tea Making 101

March 29, 2022

It’s no secret that meditation is a huge factor in overall health and wellness. When it’s difficult to meditate, you can build moments of mindfulness into the day through simple activities like brewing and enjoying a cup of tea. Before we jump in, let’s discuss mindfulness.

What is being mindful? Mindfulness is the ability to be fully present and aware of where we are and what we’re doing and not overly reactive or overwhelmed by what’s going on around us. It’s another form of meditation. That might sound trivial, except that we so often veer from the matter at hand. Our mind takes flight, we lose touch with our body, and pretty soon we’re engrossed in thoughts about something that just happened or fretting about the future. And that can makes us anxious. Mindfulness is rooted in Zen Buddhist meditation practices, used for centuries throughout East Asia. Buddhism, which offers up many ways to bring focus to our everyday lives, has a long historical association with tea. Buddhist monks living in mountain monasteries have long used tea growing nearby to help maintain a gentle alertness whilst meditating. Even today, tea is served in monasteries and beyond to encourage a state of focus, clarity and emotional balance.

When we think of tea, what comes to mind? For us, calm and relaxing are the first words to come up. The association of tea with relaxation and meditation is no accident. Closely intertwined with Buddhism, especially Zen buddhism, tea is often seen as an aid for meditation, stemming hunger, clearing the mind and curbing intense reactions. Buddhism deems that tea helps with cultivating the body and mind. Therefore, drinking tea has become a common practice of monks. As recorded in the Song Dynasty, monks “get up, wash their face and hands, and drink tea in the morning. Then, they sit during meditation and then take a nap. When they get up, they wash face and hands, and drink tea. They have a meal. Then, they wash face and hands, and drink tea.” In brief, everything is connected to tea. 

The main tea that is drank during these ceremonies is Matcha. Matcha can calm your stressed mind and provide your central nervous system relaxation. It creates sustainability to mental alertness. The property of this type of Green Tea to keep your mind relaxed and calm is the first reason Buddhists monks choose to consume Green Tea over any other tea type.

When you think of meditation, you might think of someone sitting on the floor with their legs crossed and eyes closed. The truth is, meditation can be anything that you do where you are fully present. Have you ever been driving on the freeway listening to your favorite song and realize that you missed your exit by a few stops? That was a form of meditation! Not everyone can jump right in and sit and have their mind go completely still. It takes practice and can improve your overall life in many ways.

These days we are constantly on our phones and computers and the notifications don’t stop popping up. Our minds are constantly hopping from one thing to the next. When you meditate, you may clear away the information overload that builds up every day and contributes to your stress. The mental and emotional benefits of meditation can include:

  • Gaining a new perspective on stressful situations
  • Building skills to manage your stress
  • Increasing self-awareness
  • Focusing on the present
  • Reducing negative emotions
  • Increasing imagination and creativity
  • Increasing patience and tolerance

Now, how do tea and meditation go together? One of the easiest ways to start being mindful is to pay attention. That mind sound silly but stick with me here! When you are making your tea in the morning (or anytime) pay attention to everything you do. Have you ever stood and truly listened? As the bubbles start to form there’s an orchestra of shifting sounds. It’s a good time to put down your phone and take a moment. When you are getting your tea out of the tin, listen to the strainer scoop up the tea leaves and hit the side of the can. As the water meets the tea leaves, colors slowly swirl and deepen. Depending on the tea, you might be able to see the leaves unfurl as they start to infuse. This is a good moment to observe and quieten those thoughts that are often whirling around in our heads – you might find it’s quite noisy in there! As you bring the cup to your lips, maybe you can feel the warmth of steam on your face, and notice the different aromas that meet your nostrils. Sip slowly and savor each sip.

This is a great way to tap in to finding your inner peace and help in thinking more clearly from day-to-day, all thanks to our favorite thing, tea.

Tea Guides

A Beginners Guide: The Six Types of Teas

March 23, 2022

All teas come from the same plant called Camillea Sinensis. What makes these teas different from one another is the processing of the tea leaves. There are six mains types of teas: Black Tea, White Tea, Green Tea, Oolong, Dark and Yellow Tea. You may be reading this thinking, “Well what about Rooibos and Chamomile? These are actually considered Tisanes. Lets jump into all six of these teas and their qualities!

White Tea

White tea is known to be one of the most delicate tea varieties because it is so minimally processed. White tea is harvested before the tea plant’s leaves open fully, when the young buds are still covered by fine white hairs, hence the name “white” tea. White tea is typically only harvested in spring.

White tea has a very light, refreshing taste to it. You can expect sweet honey notes and lightly vegetal flavors, from a delicate Silver Needle to a more full-bodied White Peony.

White tea has many benefits to it as well! Thanks to minimal processing, white tea has the most antioxidants of all. These help protect the body from free radicals, fight disease and keep you and your immune system healthy. White teas have also been shown to help reverse skin damage caused by stress, diet and sun, and can even help the skin to rebuild resistance to stress.

Black Tea

Black tea is one of the most popular tea selections out there. It has a bold flavor and long shelf life. There are many types of black tea ranging from Earl Grey to English breakfast. Black tea leaves are allowed to fully oxidize before being processed and dried, which makes the leaves dark brown and gives the tea its signature flavor profile. Black teas tend to be bold and brisk, and they are often described as astringent.

After the leaves are picked, they are gently bruised and allowed to fully oxidise. During this process the leaves will turn from the green you see on the bush to the brown we recognize as tea, before finally being dried.

Black tea is loaded with health benefits. Thanks to their high caffeine content, black teas will give you that kick to get you out of bed in the morning. Unlike coffee, the caffeine in black tea is slow-release and therefore leaves you feeling energised for longer. Black tea is also naturally high in flavonoids, powerful antioxidants known to help lower cholesterol, thereby reducing the risk of strokes and heart attacks.

Green Tea

Green tea is another extremely popular tea among tea drinkers. The taste of green tea varies. Green teas can range from the sweet, floral character of a Chinese green, such as Jade Tips, to an intense vegetal Japanese Sencha, the flavor depending on where the leaves are grown and how the leaves are heated. Green tea is widely believed to be bitter in taste. However, this is usually due to burning the leaves with boiling water. When brewed at lower temperatures the resulting flavor should be smooth, clean and even sweet. The leaves are plucked, slightly withered, then immediately cooked to preserve the green quality and prevent oxidization. As a result of these methods, green teas have a much higher concentration of chlorophyll, polyphenols, and antioxidants than other tea types. 

Green tea has been shown to have positive effects on parts of the brain used for memory, increasing cognitive functions. Green tea is also a favorite for many nutritionists thanks to its effect on the metabolism. Matcha, in particular, is often included in smoothies, energy balls and pre-workout snacks.

Oolong Tea

Oolong tea is often overlooked despite having some of the most varied and exciting flavor profiles. From lighter ‘green’ oolongs to the darker, more heavily oxidised oolongs, it is this varying level of oxidation that makes this tea type so exciting, offering a huge spectrum of flavour. Expect everything from a light and floral to a dark and aromatic.

After the leaves are picked (usually whole shoots), they are gently withered to remove some of the moisture from the leaf, before being tumbled in a bamboo drum. This process bruises the leaves and provokes oxidation. Oolongs are semi-oxidised which means that unlike black teas which are allowed to oxidise fully, for oolongs the process is halted after a certain time. The period of oxidation varies depending on the type of oolong being produced and can vary from 10% oxidation for a ‘green’ oolong, to over 60% for a darker Oolong. The leaves are then pan fired at high temperatures before being rolled and dried.

Oolong has been shown to help so many areas of your skin! From anti-aging to eczema to a healthy radiant glow, oolong is the way to go!

Dark Tea

Many people assume dark teas and black teas are the same. They are not! Dark teas are actually closer to green teas in they way that they are processed in the beginning. They then go through a fermentation process. The most common dark tea is Pu’er tea. It is one of the oldest types of tea, with a history dating back more than 2,000 years. Pu-erh teas are often described as having a subtle mushroom-like taste. This ancient tea originates in Yunnan province on China’s southwestern frontier, where a temperate climate and lush landscapes, teeming with biodiversity, provide ideal growing conditions for tea. 

In China, pu-erh tea has long been sipped to achieve a variety of health benefits, such as improvements in heart health and reductions in cholesterol levels. It’s also said that pu-erh tea can help promote weight loss, enhance eyesight, stimulate circulation, and soothe hangovers.

Yellow Tea

Yellow tea is produced similarly to white tea and green tea though an additional step is added. This extra step produces a tea that brews into a golden hue and features a mellow flavor without grassy notes. Yellow tea is a Chinese tea that is difficult to find outside of China. That’s because the process to produce this tea is time intensity, requires additional labor, and proves to be difficult when it comes to large-scale quality control. As a result, there are only three main types of yellow tea available on the market today!

Yellow tea undergoes a production process that is similar to green tea but includes one extra, time-consuming step. The leaves are harvested in early spring and immediately dried using direct sunlight or gentle pan-firing. Once dry, the leaves are wrapped in wet paper or cloth to induce a mild oxidation process through steaming. The yellow tea leaves are oxidized for up to three days and may undergo additional firing or drying rounds. This tea processing method produces a yellowing effect on the tea leaves.

Yellow tea is packed with antioxidants including polyphenols and catechins that are beneficial to overall health. These antioxidants work to prevent damage known as oxidative stress, which is caused by the presence of free radicals. This type of stress is known to breakdown healthy cellular processes and can contribute to premature aging as well as mental decline. The tea is naturally calorie-free, making it a good choice for people on weight loss plans that are looking to replace sugary sodas with healthier alternatives.

Tea Health Benefits

Caffeine Content in Tea and How It’s Determined

March 21, 2022
how much caffeine is in tea

Each day, billions of people rely on caffeine to wake up, or to get through a work shift or that dreaded 3 pm afternoon slump. In fact, this natural stimulant is one of the most commonly used ingredients in the world. Eighty percent of the world’s population consumes a caffeinated product each day, and this number goes up to 90% for adults in North America. So what is caffeine and how does caffeine in tea effect us?

What is caffeine?

Caffeine is a natural stimulant most commonly found in tea, coffee, and cacao plants. When you consume caffeine, it blocks the effects of adenosine, which is a neurotransmitter that relaxes the brain and makes you feel tired. Adenosine levels build up throughout the day, making you increasingly more tired and causing you to want to go to sleep. Caffeine helps you stay awake by connecting to adenosine receptors in the brain without activating them. This blocks the effects of adenosine, leading to reduced tiredness.

What is the difference in tea and coffee?

Put simply, the caffeine in tea and coffee are digested differently. The caffeine in tea binds with an amino acid called L-theanine. This bond is what makes tea caffeine act in a slower, more controlled way. Instead of a relatively short, intense burst of energy like you would get from coffee, you get a prolonged, slow-release form of energy. You won’t notice a burst of energy, sweaty palms or jitters. But you’ll become much calmer, and focused.

The way coffee works is that it gives you a nice jolt of energy a couple of minutes after ingesting it, and you will almost suddenly feel awake. You’ll notice the coffee is working if you’re starting to get a bit jittery, possibly a bit sweaty, and feel like you have to do everything at once. This is because the caffeine from coffee passes right into the bloodstream, and has a very powerful direct effect. There is no gentleness, just a direct need to get up and do something.

What determines the caffeine content in tea?

There are a handful of factors that determine how much caffeine is in each cup of tea you make. They range from steep time, water temperature, the amount of tea leaf used, harvest time and type of leaf used. Any tea that is a true tea that comes from the Camellia Sinensis plant will have some level of caffeine in it. Additionally, the shorter time you steep your tea, the less caffeine you will have in that cup.

Which teas have the highest and lowest levels of caffeine?

Black tea typically has the most caffeine of all the tea types. One of the reasons for this is a longer infusion time versus green along with higher steeping temperatures, typically boiling. Because black tea is oxidized, it allows more caffeine to be extracted from the leaf versus other types of tea. Matcha is another tea that is high up on the list of most caffeinated tea drinks due to the fact that you consume the entire leaf. Herbal teas (which are teas that are not from the Camellia Sinesis plant) will have little to no caffeine in them.

Daily caffeine consumption.

Daily recommended caffeine should be about 400 milligrams, which is 4 “cups” of coffee, but cups being 8 ounces, it really means 2 large cups to a lot of people. With black tea coming in around half the caffeine as coffee (45 per cup versus 90 for coffee) you can enjoy a lot more tea throughout the day.

Tea Health Benefits

Five Teas That Will Get Rid of Your Hangover

March 18, 2022
teas-to-fight-hangover

We’ve all had those night where we have one to many drinks at happy hour with friends and we wake up feeling not our best. Alcohol being incredibly dehydrating will result in symptoms like headache, dry mouth and fatigue when you’re hungover, which is why you need to hydrate as much as possible while restoring your body’s electrolyte balance. One of the best ways to do this is with teas. We’ve put together a list of our top teas to help kick your hangover.

Before we jump into the teas best for a hangover, it’s important that we discuss some things to avoid. IF you are not used to consuming lots of caffeine, do not overload on it while trying to get rid of your hangover symptoms. Too much caffeine can further accentuate the symptoms. If your stomach is already reeling, your head is already spinning and you already feel dizzy, you don’t need another jolt. You definitely don’t need another stimulant, especially if you suffer from hangover shakes. One to two cups is more than enough to add to drinking plenty of water to get back to your normal self again!

Matcha

Matcha is praised for all its benefits as a superfood so it’s no wonder that it is great for the day after drinking. Matcha is not only loaded with antioxidants, it also has the caffeine and chlorophyll to help pick you back up! It is essentially a trifecta combination to help you kick it back into gear. Caffeine helps to reduce your headache, the antioxidants help your body detox, and the chlorophyll acts to restore the natural balance in your body. An added benefit is that Matcha is also known to have the ability to protect your liver. Since it is high in caffeine, we suggest only one cup of matcha when combatting your hangover. Too much caffeine can make you jittery and make the hangover process more difficult.

Pro tip: To maximize your matcha, add coconut water or coconut milk. The day after a big night your body is craving electrolytes. Add this to your cup, hot to iced, will make it that much more effective!

Ginger Tea

We have been using ginger for years and years to help treat all sorts of ailments. Rich in antioxidants and full of rich spice, ginger tea is a beloved option at any time of day, whether you’ve been drinking or not. Ginger is known to help calm your stomach and elevate nausea thanks to its active ingredient, gingerol! This ingredient is one reason why pregnant women suffering from morning sickness often nibble on ginger snaps or hard ginger candy to help keep their bellies calm. Studies have also shown its effective in reducing joint and muscle pain. Our lemon ginger herbal tea is the perfect tea to sip on as it has no caffeine and has a boost of lemon in it!

If you do not have a ginger tea handy, you can certainly use raw ginger by adding it to boiling water. A little splash of lemon will make for the ideal soothing hangover tea.

Turmeric Tea

Turmeric is well known for its anti-inflamitory properties so it could help with the hangover headache. It is also known to stimulate blood flow and metabolism which helps to boost detoxification. Its anti-inflammatory properties are also known to soothe and restore the skin from the inside out, and help with overall gut health. Many blends of Turmeric tea also contain ginger which is known to help with nausea, as stated above.

Chamomile Tea

Another great hangover tea choice is herbal chamomile tea. You’ll probably have some hidden in the kitchen and it’s a fantastic feel-good tea. It is great at helping settle the stomach and being caffeine-free, with every soothing sip, it provides a healing boost to your nervous system. It’s been used traditionally for centuries to settle upset nerves and is an easy-to-drink tea when hungover. The active ingredient in chamomile is apigenin which has been studied for its stress-relieving properties.

Tea Health Benefits

Tea Wellness: Sipping for Healthy, Glowing Skin

February 28, 2022

Beautiful skin starts from within. From the inside, out. While we can spend hundreds of dollars on all types of different skincare, we first need to make sure that what’s going on inside is clean, too. When your insides are working properly, it really shows on the outside. The skin is the largest organ in the body and we need to make sure we are treating it with love and care! In case you didn’t know, tea is PACKED with antioxidants which are essential for a natural glow. Antioxidants help in restoring your natural, even and brighter skin tone by clearing the free radicals and inhibiting the enzymes responsible for the over-production of melanin. In this article, we will be breaking down what teas can help support that healthy glow.

Peppermint Tea

Peppermint tea is anti-septic and anti-bacterial. It encourages cell turnover, gets rid of dead skin cells and makes your skin stay consistently glowing. Peppermint tea is especially great if you suffer from hormonal acne like many of us do. The menthol in peppermint tea can help improve hormonal imbalances and slow the production of excess sebum on the skin.  It’s also rich in vitamin E which helps in visibly slowing down of the aging process due to excessive sun exposure.

Rooibos Tea

Rooibos tea is a huge contender for helping with anti-aging!  It has high levels of antioxidants, zinc, and alpha-hydroxy acids that give it the ability to prevent and reverse fat loss under the skin, and protects against harmful free radicals that we are faced with day to day. Rooibos is also high in zinc which has been proven to help correct hormonal imbalances that trigger acne.

Chamomile Tea

When you feel stressed, your sympathetic nervous system releases stress hormones like cortisol and adrenaline into your body. Cortisol causes increased oil production in your skin glands, which can lead to clogged pores, acne breakouts and can result in physical manifestations such as wrinkles. Chamomile tea has been used for its stress relieving qualities for a long, long time. It is ideal for inducing feelings of calm, rest, and encouraging better sleep which are critical for allowing the skin to naturally heal and imperative for glowing skin. Stress can disrupt your sleeping patterns. A good nights rest is crucial for your skin to repair and rejuvenate itself!

Green Tea

We can’t have a list of best teas for your sink without mentioning the GOAT of antioxidant filled teas. “Is green tea good for your skin?” is a question that’s often Googled, and the answer is yes!  For one, green tea is rich in epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG), a highly potent antioxidant, which research has shown helps reduce oiliness of the skin and improve acne. It’s also extremely high antioxidant content also protects the skin against UV damage.

Ginger Tea

Ginger is helpful in the process of digestion and aids in gut health. Good digestion equals good skin. Studies show that people who have a healthier gut microbiota may have a healthier fatty acid profile in their skin, meaning their skin is more moisturized, hydrated and protected. Good digestion means toxins are discarded regularly from your body bringing freshness and a radiant glow to your skin.

All of these teas above have amazing health and skin benefits. Even if you only incorporate one or two of these teas for glowing skin into your daily diet, you should notice the wondrous effects they can bring to your skin! Along with sipping on tea for glowing skin, we also researched the best skincare products that use tea as their main ingredient. You can read all about tea infused skincare!

Tea Health Benefits

The Best Teas to Help Alleviate a Sore Throat

February 22, 2022

Drinking fluids when you’re feeling under the wether is essential to help flush out toxins from the body. Warm liquids can be especially comforting when your throat is irritated. But sipping certain herbal teas like licorice root or green tea may have even greater benefits — like reducing throat swelling and helping to clear mucus. Why is this? Tea is packed with amino acids and antioxidants that can help speed up the process in addition to traditional medicines to help you recover quicker. Even if you take all the necessary precautions like booster, flu shot, diligently washing your hands, you may still end up under the weather. Let’s jump in to the best teas to help you through those times!

Chamomile Tea

Chamomile is known to have both anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, helping to reduce swelling and repair tissue. It’s also an antispasmodic, meaning it can help to reduce any coughing as well. And inhaling chamomile steam is a popular home remedy for treating respiratory issues associated with the common cold.

Peppermint Tea

Peppermint tea is an amazing drink to have when your throat is irritated. Because peppermint contains menthol, it acts as an effective decongestant and soothing agent. It’s a great choice before bedtime, as it helps aid in digestion, too. The antiviral, antibacterial, and anti-inflammatory components of green tea all help in dealing with cold symptoms.

Black Tea

When you’re feeling under the weather, skip your morning cup of joe for a caffeinated cup of black tea. Not only will it wake you up, but it also has compounds called tannins that will help reduce inflammation and relieve sore throat pain. You can also gargle black tea at a comfortable temperature to help reduce inflammation.

Ginger Tea

Ginger helps in soothing a sore throat in two ways – one by relieving the pain and second by fighting the infections. Ginger is huge in the wellness space for a reason. Ginger root is loaded with antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties which can help fight off sickness at its root. Ginger may also help with lowering body temperature and reducing fever. Adding a dash of cinnamon can help increase the antibacterial effects.

Green Tea

Green tea contains powerful antioxidant compounds called polyphenols that may help your immune system fight off cold and flu viruses. Green tea is also known to have anti-inflammatory properties which may help to alleviate discomfort of a sore throat. These properties come from a compound called epigallocatechin-3-gallate, which reduces inflammatory proteins in your body. This is important because sore throat is most often caused by inflammation of the pharynx, or back of your throat due to a cold or flu.

Tea Tips:

  • Try adding fresh lemon to your cup of tea. Lemon is packed with Vitamin C! Vitamin C is a tried and true remedy for fighting infection and bolstering immunity.
  • Add a dash of cinnamon to increase the antibacterial effects in all of these cups of tea! Cinnamon is packed with antioxidants which lend it a mild analgesic and anti-inflammatory effects.
  • Our Lemon Ginger Herbal Tea is a great tea to help your sore throat. Not only is it naturally caffeine free, its packed with cold busting ingredients like ginger, lemongrass, lemon peel, licorice and spearmint.
  • Add honey to your tea for extra throat soothing benefits. Honey is one of the best remedies for a sore throat due to its natural antibacterial properties that allows it to act as a wound healer, immediately offering relief for pain while working to reduce inflammation.

Aside from tea soothing a sore throat and alleviating symptoms, it is always best to check with a medical professional if you’re truly under the weather. Tea offers many benefits for helping you through these times. Even the simplicity of preparing and enjoying a cup of tea can help you to relax and soothe both the body and mind. Whether you or a loved one is suffering from a sore throat, we hope you feel better soon!

Tea Recipes

Tea Pairing 101: What Tea Should I Pair with my Meal

February 17, 2022

You may have heard of the traditional tea time foods like sandwiches, scones and cakes to pair with tea but what about every other meal? Just like certain wines pair perfectly with certain foods, tea is exactly the same. With their different flavor profiles, this makes for some delicious pairings that will enhance your culinary experience. Pairing tea with food is the perfect way to enhance the taste of a dish as well as the drink itself. For centuries, sommeliers and chefs have paired certain wines with certain foods. Most of us are familiar with the basic rules: Red wines to accompany rich, red meat dishes. White wines to accompany white meats, fish and vegetarian dishes. Dessert wines for… well, dessert!

There are a number of different types of tea including white, green, oolong pu’erh and black. Generally white tea has the most delicate and subtle flavors, black and dark teas having the deepest flavors and black tea the highest tannin content/astringency. When you have a dish in mind that you want to match a tea with, consider the weight of the dish and what type of tea has a similar intensity.

White Teas

Because of the extremely subtle flavor of white teas, we recommend pairing them with only the mildest of flavors so you do not miss the sweetness that is so loved in white tea. Pure white tea has a very delicate flavor, sometimes with notes of apricot and has a buttery mouthfeel. It is often seen in blends with fruits like peaches or flowers like roses or orange blossoms. Think of white tea as you would a delicate white fish. Its taste easily melds with whatever flavors it’s paired with. 

Pairing suggestions: oatmeal, yogurt, or other light dishes with fresh berries for breakfast and basmati rice, white fish and basic salads with lunch and dinner.

Our favorite white teas: White Peony, Dragonfruit and Citrus Blossom.

Green Teas

Green tea is known for its subtle taste and light and refreshing flavor profile in comparison to other types of tea like many varieties of black tea.  In general, the subtle, vegetative flavor and aroma of most green tea is well suited to mild or subtly flavored foods, such as seafood, rice, salads, melon or chicken. Green tea is also great to drink after meals as it has been shown to help aid in digestion!

Pairing suggestions: Fish, lemon, mint, basil, vinegar, smoked or barbecued meat.

Our favorite green teas: Gunpowder Green, Sencha, Moroccan Mint

Oolong

Many argue that the subtle complexity of flavor and aroma attributed to oolong tea demand drinking it on its own. However, because oolongs can range in character between green and black teas, many can be paired with food along the same lines as their green or black counterparts. For instance, greener oolongs tend to go well with scallops, lobster and other sweet rich foods, while darker oolongs compliment somewhat stronger-flavored foods such as duck and grilled meats.

Pairing suggestions: Bread and butter, fruit, roasted vegetables, milk chocolate, lightly salted foods.

Our favorite oolongs: Morning Oolong and Formosa.

Black Teas

The more robust flavors and aromas of most black teas, as well as the most pronounced tannins, are well suited to pairing with full-flavored foods such as meat and spicy dishes. Unlike green teas, black tea leaves have been cured and are therefore fully oxidized, resulting in a somewhat more astringent taste, together with malty and woody, roasted flavors similar to bread.

Pairing suggestions: Spicy food, beef, lamb, ham and chicken, lightly salted food, pasta dishes (like lasagna), and fruits.

Our favorite black teas: Darjeeling, Ceylon and Lapsang Souchong.

Pu’erh Tea

Worthy of special note, pu-erh teas are known for their digestive benefits. Pu-erh teas have a strong, earthy and distinctive flavor, and they make great choices alongside a chicken or stir-fry recipe, as they can neutralize the oily and greasy tastes. Thanks to their digestive benefits, these beverages are often preferred after large meals.

Pairing suggestions: After meal, eggs, red meat, wild mushrooms, chocolate, poultry.

Desserts and Tea

For desserts, we suggest seeking out English Breakfast black tea. Our Chinese teas are hearty, rich, and taste perfect when complementing baked custards, chocolate cakes, or a rich, dense strawberry shortcake. Assam is another rich black tea that complements chocolate desserts, yet is a surprising foil against lemony or custard dishes. Some may be sensitive to caffeine. To that we suggest our Decaf Earl Grey or Decaf English Breakfast. Due to the naturally sweet, floral nature of a Jasmine, it is also ideal to serve with a dessert such as fruit, macaroons and any coconut desserts! Chai tea also pairs wonderfully with light pastries and scones.