After quitting caffeine for New Year’s two years ago and starting a course of herbal studies, I have become highly appreciative of tea. I love the ritual of choosing the proper tea for my moment whether it is to wake and energize my senses for the day or lull me calmly to sleep at night. I enjoy the various forms of making tea whether boiling water to the proper temperature to pour over a bag in my brown ceramic mug, creating a homemade medicinal decoction from garden grown lemongrass, astragalus or dandelion root; sipping green fresh-stirred matcha slowly from little Japanese cups alongside my Little Tokyo teapot; or going all out for a batch of customized masala chai in my tomato red Le Creseut French oven pot.
I also love the way herbs and spices affect and nurture the body naturally. I know that chicory, rosemary and ginger are the best bets for breakfast to electrify the brain for a hard day of work. I know that thyme is soothing yet stimulating midday for keeping the productivity and the bowels flowing. I know that rice genmaicha is perfectly fortifying before a long hike. And I know that nothing creates comfort and peace and that warm and fuzzy “blankets on a cold day” feeling like a warm nightcap of chamomile.
With all the beautiful health benefits and mental well being that tea brings, it’s a shame to see it counteracted grossly when it comes to the mass marketing department. Earlier this year, Food Babe came out with a post on all of the tea companies in the markets that were selling teas stuffed with artificial and unnatural flavors as well as poisonous plastic and paper tea bags. Basically her findings say that only Numi, Rishi and Traditional Medicinals are pure. Another source at Clean Plates goes further to confirm that EDEN Organic, Organic Stash, Choice, Two Leaves, Organic Yogi Tea, and Tetley Black and Green Tea get a passing grade as well.
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