Do yourself some good with a Little Miracle

If you want to maximise the antioxidants and energy you get from tea, Little Miracles might be a good place to start.

Little Miracle tea leaves from Sri Lanka, are well known for their high quality tea leaves whether that be black, green or white iced tea – all organic and blended with ginseng and acai.

Little Miracles
Do yourself some good

Once the green tea has undergone both minimal oxidation and further processing it holds a high level of antioxidants. As a result, more of the original plant substances survive in this herb, such as those known as polyphenols. It is then mixed with pomegranate to give you a refreshingly healthy natural lift.

Black tea is a variety of tea that is more oxidized than the green and white varieties, and thus carries a lower level of natural antioxidants whilst having a higher level of natural caffeine. For sweet satisfaction the tea is then blended  with peach in addition to the ginseng and acai.

With the white tea, selected buds are harvested at a far more immature stage. They are then gently processed in order to prevent oxidation or further fermentation, thus retaining the delicate taste and natural benefits of pure white tea and mixing it with cherry.

A new drink for the summer

There is much to say about the health benefits of teaand there is a lot to say about the antioxidant boost found in drinking quality berry juices too.

A new spin on iced tea
A new spin on iced tea

But here’s something a little new. The Berry Company have introduced a brand called Special Tea.

Combining the benefits of tea’s own antioxidant potency with the fruity goodness of berry juice or peach juice is a welcome departure from the norm – resulting in a drink which is refreshingly cool yet subtly sweet as you need a summer drink to be.

Te first offerings are a 100% natural White Tea with Peach juice and a Green Tea with Blueberry juice. They still contain no artificial flavourings, sweeteners, preservatives or colourings,  everything in the drinks is entirely natural, just the way The Berry Company always make it.

An instant hot mulled spice drink from Twinings

Right now the weather is cold, wet and windy. Welcome to January! But wintry conditions like this are the perfect excuse for a hot mulled wine.

For those times when it can’t be wine (such as now, when I’m sitting opposite my boss), Twinings have made a soothing Mulled Spice Tea– a rich assam scented with cinnamon and cloves, infused with the mulled spices of the festive season.

Tea with mulled spices
Tea with mulled spices

There’s little that can relax you in winter months like the warming notes of a hot spiced drink. This tea is amazing if you add milk and (if the boss isn’t looking) a splash of sherry…

Another winter warmer, focussed more perhaps towards revitalizing your senses, is Twinings Green Tea with Ginger. Definitely good if you’ve just been caught out in the cold and want to avoid any chance of a sniffle.

Green Tea Linked to Lower Flu Risk

No one likes to get the flu, so finding simple ways to fight off the illness is welcome news, especially for those at higher risk for infection. A study in the BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine suggests that green tea extracts may help prevent influenza in healthcare workers.

Better immuni-tea
Certain people, such as healthcare workers, the young and the elderly, and people with chronic health conditions such as diabetes or lung disease, are at greater risk of getting the flu than others. This study looked at the effect of green tea extracts in helping prevent flu in Japanese healthcare professionals who care for the elderly.

In this study, 200 healthcare workers were randomly assigned to receive capsules of a green tea extract that contained compounds known as catechins (378 mg per day) and theanine (210 mg per day) or placebo for five months. The majority of participants had also been vaccinated against the flu.

Results showed that the incidence of influenza in the green tea group was significantly lower compared with the placebo group (4 versus 13 people were diagnosed with the flu).

Prior studies have also shown that green tea may help prevent influenza, and the authors of this study comment, “The consumption of tea extracts including catechins and theanine has also been reported to enhance systemic immunity and prevent the occurrence of upper respiratory tract infection and influenza symptoms in healthy adults.” Larger research trials are needed to confirm these study findings.

Things you can do to prevent the flu
The influenza virus is a cause of serious illness and even death, so it is important to take preventive measures to stay well:

■ Keep it clean. To help prevent contracting or spreading the flu, be sure to wash your hands frequently, cover your mouth when you cough or sneeze, and get a flu jab. When possible, avoid people who have the flu or going to work if you are sick. While these measures aren’t 100% guaranteed, they go a long way toward lowering the risk of respiratory illness and flu.
■ Choose a healthy lifestyle. Living a balanced life that includes a healthy diet, regular exercise, not smoking, and stress-reducing activities can also boost your immunity and help you stay healthy. Commit to these activities to improve and maintain your health.
■ Talk with a doctor. Visit your doctor to discuss ways to prevent the flu and whether or not a flu jab is appropriate for you.

4 bottles of sun lotion to win – ready for your trip away

I’ve got four bottles of Green People’s award winning sun lotion to give away. Just in time for the Summer holidays!

Green People - a kinder sun experience
Green People - a kinder sun experience

I should say this isn’t any old sun lotion. Other lotions can use silicone which is like wrapping someone in cling film – that just causes prickly heat. Green People use natural ingredients which means people with sensitive skin and those prone to allergies can use them. No more pore clogging or chemical scents. The Green Tea antioxidants help protect against cell damage too.

The lotion we’re offering is SPF 22. Green People now sell only SPF 15 and SPF 25. To be in with a chance of winning a bottle, email me with your name and address and I’ll enter you into the prize draw (UK entrants only, competition closes 28th July).

Richly coloured fruits can reduce blood pressure

Who’d object to some more blueberries or strawberries? Now, you may have good reason to eat them.

Richly coloured fruits contain flavanoids which help to prevent high blood pressure.

High blood pressure, of course, is bad and can lead to heart attacks or strokes, and also kidney and eye problems. It tends to be more of a problem as we get older, but is best prevented when we are young.

Diet is the new wonder drug when it comes to high blood pressure. It is worth consulting your doctor about changing your diet if you want to reduce your blood pressure.

But studies which focussed on the eating of bright coloured fruit, particularly with a type of flavanoid called anthocyanins, showed that people under 60 could reduce their risk of high blood pressure by 12%. Other flavanoids: apigenin, catechin, and epicatechin (found in parsley and green tea) also reduced blood pressure for some people.

So, enjoy more blueberries, cranberries, and strawberries, by adding them to your cereal or dessert, and your body will thank you for it. And keep eating lots of colours throughout the day.

Chai-tea – I’ve found a new religion


Perhaps for some people tea is the perfect religion.

If you want a moment’s quiet, what better than finding calm in the depths of a cup of warm copper coloured infusions.

Or if you need some healing, then there are a variety of time-tested tastes to ease your ailments.

Are you desperate for a listening ear and sympathy? Invite your friend over for no better reason than the ritual brew of tea-for-two.

And if you really need to know the future, well, you can always get your aunt to read the tea-leaves…

Of course the humble tea bush and all its adherents won’t quite match the majesty of a higher power, but many a prayer has risen on the incense of a steaming cuppa, and many a moment has been satisfied by the perfect choice of tea at that perfect time.

It’s not as if the gurus of tea making don’t know they’re on to something. You’ve surely noticed how shops’ shelves have become increasingly laden with a greater supply of different teas? Continue reading

All the benefits of wheatgrass in a bottle

Don’t you love it when some clever fella invents something to take all the hard work out of an issue? Over in Germany a drink is currently being developing which is high in Omega 3, that means people who cannot consume fish (like me) will have another rich source of this essential fatty acid.

Wheatgrass Cocktail
Wheatgrass Cocktail

It’s tenuous to connect this breakthrough with Rabenhorst’s array of healthy drinks, but I hope they take on the idea.

Already the producers of organic drinks of cherry, cranberry, beetroot and prune juice, the traditional company are now making a wheatgrass drink. That means you can get all the benefits of wheatgrass: purer blood, less toxins, less eczema and psoriasis, improved digestion and lower blood-pressure – all in a cup without having to squeeze the wheatgrass yourself – and they’ve mixed in green-tea and spirulina for a delicious healthy breakfast drink.

Rabenhorst have been producing quality fruit juices for over 200 years and last year won an international award for innovation in beverages.

Green tea heals body and soul

My friend recently got into green tea. He was reading a self-help book on how to reduce stress, took the hint and is now practically addicted to the stuff. (It makes for neat little gifts to him: green tea and nettle, green tea with orange and lotus flower, green tea with interesting red bits…)

Because green tea is steamed rather than fermented, like the more familiar black tea, that is what holds its antioxidant and anticancer properties. The latest report out this month is that drinking five cups a day would reduce your risk of getting blood and lymph cancers by over 40%. In fact so well documented is the healing effect of green tea that 1000s of studies now exist into its benefits. My friend thinks he’s drinking something to help him de-stress but he could be helping to prevent heart disease, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, diabetes, osteoporosis and weight-gain. Not bad for a cup of green stuff.

Incidentally, green tea contains half the caffeine of coffee and slightly less than black tea, so you can drink it before bedtime. Since it aids digestion and cleanses the pallet it is also good to drink after a meal or in the afternoon as a pick me up. It is best made with spring or filtered water and usually brewed for only a short time. Personally, I like to drink it before the evening begins as it really does help clear away the day’s stress. If you’re anything like me (or my friend) you’ll find it will help relax you, giving you composure for the twilight hours.