Category Archives: Green Tea

9 Simple Steps to Support Body Detoxification & Cleansing

~ written by Katolen Yardley, MNIMH, Medical Herbalist

After the festive holidays and an excess consumption of sugar and rich food,January and February are excellent times to focus on cleansing both internally and by reducing contact with environmental toxins.

  1. Start your morning by drinking a large glass of room temperature water with 1 freshly squeezed organic lemon to activate the digestive juices.
  2. Eat your greens! Vegetables are packed with anti cancer nutrients, their vitamin and antioxidant content are essential for immune system function, detoxification and the high fiber content will assist in lowering cholesterol and help keep the colon clean. Make it a goal to consume 4 -5 half cup servings of fresh vegetables daily.
  3. Herbal Teas such as Red Clover, Nettle Leaf, Burdock Root, and Dandelion Leaf are known as alteratives or blood cleansers, which assist in the removal of waste matter from the bloodstream, kidneys and liver. Our herbal blend, Clean Green Herbal Tea is specially blended to support the function or the liver, kidneys and lymphatic system in removing impurities from the body.
  4. Green tea assists the liver with detoxification, and helps to prevent the formation of carcinogens in the body, (such as the cancer promoting toxins from pesticides, nitrates in processed deli meats and benzopyrenes found in diesel fuel). To purchase organic green tea, click here.
  5. Munch on seaweeds. Seaweeds help remove heavy metals from the body and assist in preventing damage from chemotherapy and radiation therapy.
  6. Raise your body temperature. A lowered body temperature can contribute to lowered immunity and an inability to overthrow viruses and bacteria. Regular use of Epsom salts added to bath water for a heating, relaxing soak. Epsom salts encourage sweating and subsequent elimination of waste matter through the skin. Hot yoga and seasoning your food with fresh ginger or cayenne pepper powder can also improve circulation.
  7. Dry skin brushing: a natural vegetable bristle brush (avoid synthetic fibers or animal bristles), for use on dry skin, before showering. Skin brushing helps to remove dead skin cells and promotes detoxification by encouraging lymphatic drainage, accelerates the removal of waste matter from the body, and increases blood flow through the veins and back to the heart. How to skin brush: Begin brushing the extremities first, starting with the arms and feet, moving to the legs, hips and buttocks, and brush in a circular motion always moving towards the heart. Avoid brushing areas of varicose veins, rashes, open wounds, infection and over thin sensitive skin. Skin brushing is an invigorating way to begin the day and can be followed with a cool shower, or Epsom salt bath.
  8. Populate main living areas with plants known to cleanse the air and detoxify the environment: aloe, spider plants, boston ferns, banana plants, english ivy, philodendrons are greens which specifically help to remove benzene and formaldehyde from a living space.
  9. Decrease the use of plastics in your home and avoid using saran wrap or plastic containers in the microwave (instead use a glass plate), – or better yet, do not use the microwave at all. Plastics are constantly gassing off emitting chemicals known as xenoestrogens, a group of toxic chemicals that mimic estrogen and are known to disrupt endocrine function. For more information, I recommend a well referenced article “Get Plastic Out Of Your Diet” written by Paul Goettlich, Nov 2003. which can be read through the clicking on the link.

Chai Tea Recipe

Making delicious herbal Chai Tea at home is quite straight forward, you will only need some basic ingredients and creativity. Ensure that the herbs you are using are potent and relatively fresh, they should possess their characteristic aromatic scent before blending them into the tea and not be faded in color.

In a sauce pan with a tight fitting lid combine the following:

Bring water to a boil. Reduce heat,to a low temperature. Add all ingredients and simmer,covered for at least 20 minutes. The herbs can be simmered longer for a stronger, more spicy flavor. This tea can be sweetened with stevia or honey.

Options: For a creamy smooth drink you can also add in almond milk or coconut milk. Adding in 1 teaspoon of green tea to the mixture will produce a stronger variation. Or for a completely different spicy fruit flavor, add in hibiscus flowers.

Preparing Herbal Teas

 ~ written by Katolen Yardley, MNIMH, Medical Herbalist

So you are interested in incorporating plant medicine into your lifestyle and are wondering where to begin…

For individuals who are just beginning to use herbs medicinally; preparing and drinking herbal teas are excellent first steps in familiarizing oneself with plant medicine.

When preparing an herbal tea for medicinal use, there are two types of preparations: infusions and decoctions.

Herbal Infusions

Herbal Infusions are similar to preparing a pot of earl grey tea. Simply pour boiling water over the herbs and steep, strain and drink. This process is used for preparing the more delicate and aromatic parts of a plant, such as the flowers, leaves, fruit, and aromatic seeds. An infusion is best when preparing an herbal tea for its high nutritional (mineral and vitamin) content.

General Adult Dosage: The general measurement for an adult when preparing herbal teas is 1 tsp. of the herb for every cup of water, steep for 15 minutes, strain then drink 3-4 cups of the tea daily.

Method 1. Place the herbs in a container with a tight fitting lid and pour freshly boiled water over the herbs. Cover the container and allow it to steep for 10-20 minutes. The length of sitting time depends upon the chemical constituents in the plant.

Method 2. Let the tea steep overnight and reheat in the morning. Never use a microwave to heat the water or reheat a tea, instead gently reheat on the stove. Storing the tea in the fridge and reheating or storing in a thermos in a convenient way of keeping the tea hot for hours.

Herbal Decoctions

Decoctions are generally used for the extraction of chemicals from heavier plant material (roots, barks, nuts, and non-aromatic seeds). A decoction is more concentrated than an infusion and used to pull out mineral salts and bitter principles of the plants.

Method 1. Bring the water to a boil, add the herbs, cover and simmer gently over low heat, for 15 to 20 minutes. Remove from heat, strain and drink.

Method 2. Add the herbs to cold water, place over low heat and slowly bring to a boil. Simmer gently over low heat for 15 to 20 minutes, keeping the lid on. These herbs can be reused 2 or 3 times before discarding.

Important Tip: Always use glass or enamel containers and do not use microwaves, aluminum or cast iron pots as they will affect the quality and effectiveness of the prepared medicine.

For more information on herbal medicine, preparation and home use visit my website by clicking here and for ongoing encouragement, health tips, recipes and up to date information on herbal medicine, sign up for my newsletter Taking Charge of Your Health.

White Tea

The least processed of all teas, the flavor of white tea is the closest to fresh, pure tea leaves. The leaves undergo two steps during processing. First, the leaves are withered and then they are immediately baked in the sun. Like black and green teas, white tea contains numerous antioxidant compounds called polyphenols (flavonoids and catechins specifically).

Catechins provide protective antioxidant action against harmful free radicals in the body. Research shows that these free radicals are involved in heart disease, some kinds of cancer and increase the risk of strokes. Due to its high antioxidant components, drinking white tea may potentially help to protect against cardiovascular disease, supports immune system function, may help to lower elevated cholesterol levels, promotes strength and integrity of blood vessels and helps to promote healthy teeth and bones.

In addition, white tea is a source of nutrients containing magnesium, managanese, potassium, calcium, and the vitamins C and K all in trace amounts.

White teas contain the least amount of caffeine of all teas, generally ranging in the cup from 5-15 milligrams.

White Narcissus Peony, also known as Pai Mu Tan (Pai means “white” and Mu Tan “peony”)-is a high quality, elegant White Tea. White Narcissus Peony tea is produced in China’s Fujian province during the early spring, by carefully selecting only the finest tender buds of the white tea plant. This results in a unique nutty, bamboo fragrance and a sweet, savory taste.

In the evening, sip white teas before or after a light meal or enjoy on its own to savor its subtle taste. To truly appreciate the delicate flavor avoid drinking with strong flavors or spicy foods and makes an excellent drink for those seeking the health benefits of Green Tea, but who prefer a more subtle flavor and aroma.

Health Benefits of Green Tea

Both Black and Green Tea originate from the same plant, Cameilla sinensis, however due to differences in harvesting and processing -where black tea is fermented and fully oxidized and green tea is prepared through steaming or pan frying techniques, the teas vary widely in flavor, aroma, nutrient content and each impacts our body in separate ways.

A key difference between Black tea and Green tea is the amount of caffeine contained in a serving. Black tea contains significantly higher amounts and can aggravate health concerns that are caffeine sensitive such as anxiety, depression and high blood pressure… Although the caffeine content found in Green Tea is much lower, I do not recommend high amounts of any product containing caffeine for individuals who are caffeine sensitive or who have conditions whose symptoms can be worsened by the consumption of caffeine.

Green Tea contains a variety of nutrients such as calcium, magnesium, potassium, manganese, Vitamin C, flavonoids, polysaccharides and theanine in trace amounts.

The largest health benefits of Green Tea are due to the high amounts of antioxidant properties called Polyphenols. Two subcategories of polyphenols include the classes of flavonoids and catechins. Catechins are plant chemicals that provide antioxidant protection against free radical damage in the body. Of the green tea catechins, the primary compounds include: catechin, epicatechin, epicatechin gallate, epigallocatechin and eipgallocatechin gallate (EGCG), the last two flavanol compounds are the most predominant and appear to be the most powerful antioxidants.

Free radical damage can contribute to heart disease, elevated cholesterol, increase the risk of strokes and are involved in some types of cancer. Research indicates that the antioxidant activity is due to the inhibition of lipid peroxidation in the body. Lipid peroxidation is the oxygen breakdown of polyunsaturated fatty acids and is implicated in inflammatory conditions, speeding up the aging process, liver and heart disease.

The flavonol compounds in Green Tea provide excellent health enhancement benefits, they are anti inflammatory in nature and have a positive effect on the heart, help to strengthen capillaries and can support individuals with circulatory insufficiency.

In addition, Green Tea offers protection from environmental stress, both physical stress and through supporting immune system function. Catechins also offer some antiviral and antimicrobial properties. Daily consumption of green tea can certainly be used as part of a larger health program to enhance the immune system.

Green Tea contains theanine, an amino acid. Recent studies have shown that theanine is a derivative of glutamic acid, a neurotransmittor located in the brain and may help to enhance concentration and focus while producing overall calming effects on the body.

My favorite type of Organic Green Tea is one containing the subtle flavors of cherry and rose. Delicious! The tea leaves can be reused more than once, simply add more water and steep. You can view it by clicking here:

Here are a couple of pub med abstracts commenting on the health enhancement benefits of green tea:

Lung Health

Prostate Health