Medicinal herbal teas taking the mainstream beverage industry by storm

Thursday, March 03, 2011 by: Jonathan Benson, staff writer
Tags: medicinal herbs, tea, health news

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(NaturalNews) Many people looking for alternatives to coffee, soda pop, artificially-sweetened drink mixes, and other mainstream beverages that severely lack in the nutritional department, are turning to medicinal teas, according to a recent report in The News Tribune. Tisanes, or herbal infusion teas that often have a medicinal flare, are popping up at coffee shops and specialty beverage stores across the country, as customers seek healthier and more flavorful beverage alternatives.

Herbal tea blends containing all sorts of plant materials, from common herbs and fruits to flowers and roots, have been utilized for centuries by many ancient cultures that recognized their health-promoting benefits. And many Americans are now discovering for the first time that when certain herbs are carefully steeped at just the right temperature for just the right amount of time, they can provide benefits like headache relief and anti-inflammation.

Maureen McHugh, co-owner of the Mad Hat Tea Co. in Tacoma, Wash., and certified nutritionist, told the Tribune that her particular tea shop is actually run more like an apothecary because many of her customers often come specifically to purchase teas for pains and ailments.

"I have had people come in, sit down, have a cup of tea and walk away without a headache," she said, referring specifically to her "Pounding Headache" herbal infusion tea made from white willow, lavender, rosehips, blue violet, lemon peel and chrysanthemum.

She and other tea herbalists have also developed blends to promote things like restful sleep and energy, among other things, taking advantage of the countless natural compounds present in plants and herbs that can be extracted into water and consumed like medicine. And while such herbalists do not specifically dispense medical advice, customers quickly learn of the teas' benefits and continue to come back for more.

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