Pukka’s new organic teas

Pukka is an Indian word.

It means authentic.

An ideal description for a fairtrade purveyor of organic teas.

They’re famous among those who love their tea. But it’s not surprising when they keep turning out such gems.

The latest include:

pukka tea Good Morning Nam Lanh tea from the Vietnamese rainforest. An ‘English Breakfast’ tea from obscure surroundings which Pukka hope to be the best black tea you will ever taste. Picking this deliciously rich tea offers the H’mong and Zhao tribes an alternative to growing opium and a chance to take more control of their lives.

pukka teaPerfect Day combines Nam Lanh tea with full-bodied and sweet ginseng, licorice and maca. Designed to tackle stress and boost energy, this tea is deliciously smooth and sweet with an earthy depth.

pukka teaGorgeous Grey is an earl grey with a hint of lavender. It comes from Dunsandle, an 150 year old tea plantation grown from a single source. The delicate, zesty and floral taste provides the perfect afternoon indulgence!

How to make Fenugreek tea

fenugreek seeds
Healing tea from ancient seeds

Fenugreek seed has long been used by civilisations to treat ailments and has recently been thought of as useful for diabetes.

It has a taste like maple syrup or licorice, and is a popular ingredient for curries, soups and stews.

However it can also be brewed to make a tea for medicinal purposes. Some people make it to control blood pressure, others for the common cold, but researchers are still speculating about whether it helps the body produce insulin. (Always talk to your doctor before regularly consuming fenugreek tea.)

It’s easy to make the tea. Steep 1 teaspoon of organic whole fenugreek seeds in a cup of boiled water for 5 minutes. Pour the water through a strainer to remove the seeds. You won’t have to sweeten it because the tea will naturally be very sweet.

Health Researchers Gather to Talk about Tea

There’s a growing body of evidence suggesting a role for tea in preventing and treating many chronic diseases, writes Maureen Williams ND.

Researchers recently gathered in Washington, DC, for the Fifth Annual Scientific Symposium on Tea and Human Health, an event that showcased results from the most recent and not-yet-published studies on the health benefits of tea.

A range of reported benefits

Here are some highlights from the new research presented at the symposium:

  • Tea may lower risk of stroke. A meta-analysis of studies looking at tea consumption and cardiovascular disease conducted by a pair of researchers from UCLA determined that drinking tea was associated with stroke prevention.
  • Tea may improve alertness and focus. A researcher from the Netherlands presented a review of studies looking at the effect of tea on mood and mental functioning. In total, she reported, the evidence suggests that taking tea can improve alertness, attention, and mood.
  • Tea extract may keep blood vessels healthy. This preliminary trial demonstrated that taking tea flavonols (antioxidant compounds) could reduce blood pressure and improve results on tests of blood vessel function in people with mild high blood pressure. It also found that people who had taken the tea flavonols for one week were protected against the deterioration in blood vessel function and blood flow that occurs after eating a very high-fat meal.
  • Tea may assist weight loss. A presentation reviewing the research on tea and weight loss included data showing that tea increases metabolic rate, fat breakdown, and weight loss and may help prevent rebound weight gain.
  • Green tea may prevent some cancers. Two papers reviewing the effects of tea on cancer risk were presented. They suggested that green tea and its antioxidants may have general anticancer effects and reviewed the findings from trials looking at green tea and specific types of cancer. One of the papers noted in particular the promising results from studies looking at green tea and cancers of the gastrointestinal tract: mouth, oesophagus, stomach, liver, and colon.
  • Tea may prevent bone loss. A researcher from Texas reviewed the data on tea’s impact on bone turnover, suggesting that tea, and especially green tea, may improve bone health and prevent fractures.

Specific tea antioxidants—how they work and what they might do for health—were the subject of other studies and reports.

Putting it in perspective

At conferences, researchers always want to present their most exciting new findings, but it is important to keep in mind that none of the papers presented at the symposium have yet been reviewed by third-party experts or published in credible journals. Still, they do show an impressive and growing body of evidence suggesting a role for tea in preventing and treating many chronic diseases.

“As the second most consumed drink in the world next to water, tea accounts for a significant amount of the flavanol intake worldwide,” states Joe Simrany, President of the Tea Council of the USA, which has been a leading force behind the International Tea and Human Health Symposium since 1991. “This gathering of renowned global nutrition scientists is the world’s leading platform to release new research on tea, and acts as a catalyst for continuing research on tea in areas as diverse and novel as cognitive function, bone growth, weight management, cancer, and vascular function.”

Abstracts from the symposium are posted at the Tea Association of the USA’s website, http://www.teausa.org.

(Fifth Intl Scientific Symposium Health Abstracts 2012, The Tea Association of the USA, accessed September 27, 2012; http://www.teausa.org/index.cfm/14748/fifth-intl-scientific-symposium-health-abstracts)

Maureen Williams, ND, completed her doctorate in naturopathic medicine at Bastyr University in Seattle and has been in private practice since 1995. With an abiding commitment to access to care, she has worked in free clinics in the US and Canada, and in rural clinics in Guatemala and Honduras where she has studied traditional herbal medicine. She currently lives and practices in Victoria, BC, and lectures and writes extensively for both professional and community audiences on topics including family nutrition, menopause, anxiety and depression, heart disease, cancer, and easing stress. Dr. Williams is a regular contributor to Healthnotes Newswire.

For those of you who love tea, when you want it and just how you like it

Nowadays, everyone has their favourite tea, and everyone is different…

It’s no longer unusual for a friend to reach into their bag or drawer to pull out their own individual prefered tea.

clipper envelope teaClipper, purveyors of organic and fairtrade tea, have developed a range of speciality teas (all protected in their own small envelopes) to enable everyone to drink their own special brew whenever and wherever they want it.

There’s…

Rise & Shine – Organic Maté, Lemongrass & Lemon Verbena infusion. A lovely little lemony lift.
Cloud Nine – Organic Elderflower, Lemongrass & Apple infusion. As welcome as a summer breeze.
Love Me Truly – Organic Chai infusion of Cinnamon, Ginger, Cardamom and Cloves. For some well-deserved me time.
Zen Again – Organic Lemongrass, Eucalyptus & Gingko infusion, for that moment of peace.
After Dinner Mints – Organic double Mint & Fennel infusion. Perfect post pudding.
Snore & Peace – Organic Chamomile, Lemon Balm & Lavender infusion. Just the thing before lights out.

Thank-you Clipper, for tea how you want it, when you want it.

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.

Organic tea offers a Higher taste in Living

I’m not a big drinker of herbal teas but recently my need to avoid milk has caused me to branch out a bit. I now have chamomile, peppermint, green tea, lemon & ginger to add to my list of likeable infusions.

But as I sit here and sip Higher Living’s Chamomile and Vanilla tea, I have to confess, it’s one of the best brews I’ve had of any hot beverage, ever. I’ve enjoyed a fair few brands of chamomile now and this surpasses the lot.

A truly pleasurable cup of tea
A truly pleasurable cup of tea

Is it because it is organic? Or is it the intriguing selection of flavours used (oddments of fennel, chamomile, lemon, orange, lime, licorice, vanilla), which blend to make such an inspirational cuppa?

Higher Living have collected together a range of teas such as cinnamon tea, licorice, or sweet chilli. The packaging is excellent too – The Best of British pack offers a timely nod to our Queen’s upcoming Diamond Jubilee. Now, I wonder if she is partial to a bit of chamomile?

Beautiful in flavour, beautiful in style. We Are Tea have hit the shelves!

Who would have thought that I would ever call a tea bag beautiful? But the We Are Tea bags are! Not only to taste but to look at. This is a tea to stock up and try all the flavours…

Berry Tea
Beautiful Berry Tea

This is the Super Berry Tea and it looks, smells and tastes amazing. Each bag is packed out with the following:
■ Hibiscus
■ Rosehip
■ Apple pieces
■ Orange peel

Simple yet so fruity.  Full of life and flavour… simply beautiful.

We Are Tea are the award wining creators of a new tea style. And not only have they created a beautiful berry tea but so much more!

Revitealise is a rejuvenating tea perfect tea for the morning after the night before. It’s a kick start for your body and brain but unfortunately it says it can’t help you with the odd socks!? (If you want to know more then you’ll have to read the back of the pack.)

But I can tell you what’s in it. This tea has a lovely flavour made up from lemon grass, liquorice root, ginger, lemon peel, peppermint and pepper. The perfect wake me up!

Very Vanilla is a wonderful whole leaf tea. Perfect whole leaf black tea leaves carefully scented with real vanilla for those that like something a little different. The subtleness of the vanilla pairs well with the smoothness of the black tea. Something sweet without the calories.

Chamomile Flowers. Grown on the Egyptian Plains, this light and bright infusion offers a stunning freshness and is remarkably calming. It’s whole chamomile flowers are the epitome of fragrant, summery elegance. Perfect for late evenings.

Moroccan Mint is an  exceptional blend of green tea and peppermint leaf is so refreshing, and like all great double acts, it is impossible to tire of this wonderful combination. The hint of mint cools the palate while the green tea warms the soul.

Serenitea is the calming tea. We all have days we would rather forget. ‘We Are Tea’ have come up with what they call the tea equivalent of a shoulder to cry on. Serenitea is designed to help you relax, de-stress, unwind and put things back into perspective. It’s a beautiful combination of green tea, tulsi, apple pieces, melissa, orange peel, lemon grass, lime blossom tree and lemon verbana.

There’s more still. I don’t have space to tell you about Earl Grey Supreme,
Gunpowder Supreme, Activitea, Peppermint Leaf, English Breakfast and  Daintea, but they’re all waiting on our GoodnessDirect We Are Tea shelf for you to try.We Are Tea

The majesty of loose leaf tea, made incredible by Yogi

Have you ever wondered why loose tea tastes better than tea made with a tea bag? Let’s be frank: have you ever realised that loose tea tasted better than tea from a tea bag?

Loose tea leaves are complete or at least bigger compared to the broken scraps found in your common tea bag. Bigger really is better in this case because, bigger leaves retain their essential oils while broken particles allow more of those nutrients to evaporate, leaving a comparatively lifeless flavour.

Yogi is no ordinary tea

No ordinary tea
No ordinary tea

Now, Yogi tea is different, not least because they are made of an amazing mix of spices and not simply tea leaves. However, Yogi tea bags are different too. Their commitment to natural flavour means their many teas are packed individually in heat-sealed envelopes to help preserve the health benefits of the herbs used. This also maintains the freshness and flavor.

But now Yogi are letting you get your hands on their original loose leaf concoctions. Another big advantage of brewing loose leaf is that the leaves have space to swell with water and release their flavour. The water circulation around the tea leaf is also important.

So, Yogi are offering some new flavours. See if you can taste the difference…

Ginger Lemon Chai
– warm pungent ginger balanced by refreshing citrus
Choco Chai, Aztec Spice
– a recreation of the ancient Aztec recipe called ‘Xocoatl’
Good Morning Chai, Roasted Chicory Spice
– roasted chicory, cinnamon, cardamom and licorice brings  a warmth and full-bodied taste
Himalaya Chai, Ginger Harmony
– sweet fennel seeds, spicy ginger and cosy cinnamon for uplifting moments
Classic Chai, Cinnamon Spice
– original recipe is cinnamon, ginger, cardamom, cloves and black pepper

Let Yogi Christmas tea warm you up this winter

If you are a fan of tea, especially Yogi herbal teas, then their Christmas Collection is likely to warm you – right down to the cockles of your soul.

It’s a perfect cup of Christmas with its range of warm restful flavour and exotic spices. And there are so many to choose from, its ideal to share with friends.

Yogi teas - share a little love
Yogi teas - share a little love

Each Christmas Collection box contains two of the following tea bags: Classic Rooibos, Sweet Chilli, Choco, Licorice, Jamaica, Bright Mood, Heart-warming, Ginger Hibiscus, Ginger Lemon, Bedtime and Black Chai.

It’s a selection that should meet anyone’s desire for herbal tea, and it makes a nice little gift too.

But, if the purist in you makes you more choosy about the teas in your cupboard then perhaps one of Yogi’s  latest organic creations might interest you:

Ginger – ginger with lemon grass, liquorice, peppermint and black pepper
Pure with Lemon – lemon grass with dandelion, ginger, cinnamon, liquorice, lemon myrtle, lemon peel and peppermint
Ginger Orange with Vanilla – ginger with liquorice, lemon grass, black pepper, orange peel, peppermint, vanilla extract, orange extract

The brilliant Qi teas all began with the mistaken purchase of a book at an airport

It’s fascinating to learn how some companies started. Take for example the beginning of Qi Herbal Health.

There has been a huge increase in the tea business in recent years but few probably started by mistakenly buying the wrong book at an airport. Joe d’Armenia must have been forced to read about the benefits of Green Tea for a few hours, but he was fascinated what he read of the benefits of drinking the tea.

It surprised him more to learn that Green Tea was mostly imported by German brokers rather than directly from China. Following an introduction to Mrs Yu Jing Hong, a minister supervising over the Yellow Mountain Region of China, Joe d’Armenia arranged for tea to be imported directly into the UK.

The Yellow Mountain Region is an area of outstanding natural beauty, remote and unspoilt. The farmers there still farm by organic methods and Joe d’Armenia helped organise more than 400 families into the Xitou Organic Farmers Association, a Fairtrade partnership.

The farmers pride in their tea, blending the teas into wonderful varieties such as pomegranate with white tea or oolong with mint and licorice. Qi Herbal Health has resulted not only in industrial enterprise for the area but also the funding of a local school, greater medical care and amenities such as street lighting and road repairs for the local town of Xitou. Not bad for a journey which began with buying the wrong book.