Tuesday, January 6, 2015

New Years Cleanse? Try Tea, Instead!

Although this title could mean many things, such as cleaning up the store after a busy holiday season, it's meant as a reference to internal body cleansing.  We get asked a lot if we carry any "cleansing" products - i.e., teas or other tisanes that might help a person's body purge any "toxins".

It's a great thought, isn't it, that you can spend the holidays eating and drinking whatever you want, and wait until the new year for a "cleanse". I sure wish that were true, and many other people do, too, it seems.  Unfortunately, the use of the words "cleanse" and "toxins" are marketing-speak to promote products that claim to rid your body of unwanted, and possibly dangerous, compounds that you (might have) ingested. Your body's liver and kidneys already rid your body of anything toxic. A "cleanse" isn't really needed if your organs are already doing their job.  You may unintentionally create an environment in your body that fosters bacteria if you do.  There have been many studies done recently that point to this same conclusion.  One of the best overviews I've read is here, and this is why we don't choose to sell cleanses here at Hoopla! Emporium.

We do, however, sell tea. Tea, whether they be true teas (Camellia sinensis), or herbal, all have beneficial ingredients that can, and do, help you stay healthy.  Black, white, or green teas all contain varying amounts of caffeine, but also contain polyphenols (a type of antioxidant) and phytochemicals, which are beneficial.  Find out what different teas can help with here.

At Hoopla! Emporium, we carry Rishi Tea, a high-quality, fair trade line with many organic choices.  We also carry World Flavorz, and Tea Drops, both local companies.  The following is a short list of the different, healthy, choices we have on our shelves:

 Mint Teas:  From Rishi Tea comes Green Mint Tea, Peppermint Rooibos, and Pacific Peppermint.  Peppermint is a fragrant herb that makes for a soothing drink. Peppermint helps you digest foods better and also reduces flatulence and digestive issues. Peppermint is prescribed to people with IBS (irritable bowel syndrome) and gallstones in capsules. A cup of peppermint tea will ease nausea and vomiting, especially if you suffer motion sickness. If you have heartburn, don’t drink peppermint tea as this might aggravate your condition. Peppermint tea brings down the severity of herpes outbreaks. The natural mint flavor of the herb helps to freshen your breath. Other health benefits of this tea are control of muscle aches and chronic pain, clearing of congestion and mild coughs, mild asthma and reduction of stress.

Fruit Teas: Also from Rishi Tea, Blueberry Hibiscus, Blueberry Rooibos, and Cinnamon Plum are tasty choices for a healthy sip.  Hibiscus tea is known to lower blood pressure, reduce high cholesterol and strengthen the immune system (it’s rich in Vitamin C). Hibiscus flower infusions have known to reduce hypertension as well, in people prone to this condition. A recent study reveals that hibiscus tea is rich in antioxidants, which protect the body against cell-damaging free radicals.  Blueberries, as well as certain stone fruits, are rich in antioxidants as well.

Green Teas:  We carry choices of green tea from Rishi Tea, and from Tea Drops.  Green Tea comes with such a host of health benefits, that it’s called the ‘wonder herb’ by tea drinkers and medical practitioners alike.
Drinking green tea lowers cancer risk and also inhibits carcinogenic in cigarettes and other compounds when imbibed. Green Tea contains potent antioxidants called polyphenols, which help suppress free radicals. Green tea also stops certain tumors from forming. Green tea lowers cholesterol and triglyceride levels and thereby promotes heart health.  Green tea also lowers blood pressure, prevents and fights tooth decay and dental issues, and inhibits different viruses from causing illnesses. We suggest trying Rishi Tea's Matcha Green, now in teabags!

Spice Teas:  From all three of our vendors, spice teas are very popular during the holiday season.  Black tea (or green, or Rooibos) teas are mixed with certain spices, like cinnamon, cardamom, clove, and newcomers like turmeric and ginger.  These teas are festive and soothing, and we've all heard the buzz about the four spices mentioned.  Turmeric has been found to be an anti-inflammatory; cinnamon and cardamom are high in antioxidants; and ginger has a myriad of benefits, from soothing an upset stomach to fighting morning and altitude sickness. We also have Rishi Tea's Serene Dream, which contains Valerian root, lemon balm, lavender and chamomile, and can help with insomnia.

Black Teas:  Despite the fact that black tea has caffeine, drinking it hydrates your body. We have many different choices here at Hoopla! Emporium, including Rishi Tea's wonderful chai teas. Tea Drops' Rose Earl Grey is fragrant and delicious!

White Teas: More delicate in flavor than a black tea, white tea still offers quite a healthful punch.  We suggest trying Tea Drops' Vanilla White for a lovely cuppa.

We're expanding our selection of fine teas, so you'll see more here in the store soon.  Please drop by, email, or visit us on our Facebook page if you have any questions at all regarding tea, and certainly come by if you need any tea accutrements - we carry loose leaf tea bags, strainers, and tea pots! We don't claim to be health professionals, but we do know our stuff when it comes to what we carry in the store.  Ask us, and we'll tell you all about it!