Boost Immunity Against Flu
Trying to avoid catching the flu in winter should be considered an extreme sport. Public transport and open plan offices are breeding grounds for germs. One of the ways to fortify your body against the flu is by sipping on a cup of rooibos throughout the day. The tea contains polyphenols known for its anti-inflammatory and antiviral properties. These polyphenols are strong antioxidants such as aspalathin and nothofagin which help boost your immune system.
Research is also currently being conducted by Professor Jonny Peter to show how drinking rooibos could help alleviate allergic rhinitis.
Lowers Risk Of Cancer
As rooibos tea comes laced with antioxidants and polyphenols some research has shown that drinking this tea may lower your risk of cancer. Antioxidants help to fend off free radicals which are notorious for causing cell damage and contributing to the risk of cancer. Test tubes studies have shown that the antioxidants that are present in rooibos tea can actively kill cancer cells and help to prevent tumor growth. While the levels can be relatively low and more studies are needed especially human tests, we figure it doesnt hurt to top up our teacups.
Health Benefit #: Could Contribute To A Healthy Heart
Speaking of antioxidants Rooibos tea contains a particular antioxidant called Chrysoeriol which is understood to contribute to a healthy heart.
How so, you ask?
Well, researchers claim that Chrysoeriol could help prevent your arteries from becoming narrow and hard a scenario which can lead to a heart attack.
Further, Rooibos is also thought to aid the healthy functioning of your heart by significantly inhibiting the activity of the angiotensin-converting enzyme . This enzyme is thought to increase blood pressure and is believed to contribute to the development of cardiovascular disease.
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Bonus: Soothe Your Pets Irritation
While the prevalence of rooibos in skincare products has increased over the years, rooibos is also good for your pets. The teas anti-inflammatory, anti-viral and anti-bacterial properties extend to pets too. It helps soothe irritations and itchy, dry skin.
When cats and dogs have a skin irritation or redness, owners often rush out to buy chemical-based shampoos and soaps which could worsen the problem, pet food nutrionist, Paul Jacobson, told the SARC. By bathing your pet in a solution of rooibos you can relieve the itchiness and prevent the onset of eczema and other mild skin problems. Jacobson owns a popular range of healthy pet remedies and food. Pets can also benefit from rooibos health-giving properties by simply pouring it over their food, recommends Jacobson.
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How Rooibos May Help To Prevent Cancer
- Rooibos may prevent the healthy cell from undergoing mutagenesis .
- Rooibos may prevent a cell with damaged DNA from becoming a cancerous cell.
- Rooibos may prevent cancerous cells from multiplying and forming a cancerous tumour.
Some of the Rooibos research at South Africas Medical Research Council focuses on how Rooibos inhibits the development of cancer cells.
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Boosts The Digestive Tract
Rooibos tea is also rich in antispasmodic agents that activate potassium ions in the body. These agents help ease stomach cramps, abdominal pain and aid digestion. The tea may also be used as a natural remedy to irritable bowel syndrome.
The antispasmodic agents help the digestive tract by smoothing out muscles in the gut. To get the most out of this effect, sufferers should drink a cup of this tea about 30 minutes prior to a meal they believe may trigger digestive problems.
Why Drink Rooibos Tea
What is Rooibos Tea?
Rooibos tea , Red Tea, or Red Bush Tea, which originates in the Western Cape province of South Africa, isnt really a tea at allits not even a distant cousin. It is an infusion made from the needle-shaped leaves of a broom-like African shrub called Aspalathus linearis.
An herbal infusion of Rooibosis naturally caffeine-free, antioxidant-rich, and loaded with heart-healthy nutrients. Rooibos tea is loaded with vitamins and minerals such as iron, calcium, potassium, copper, manganese, zinc, magnesium and alpha hydroxy acid.
It contains unique flavonoids aspalathin and nothofagin, and loads of antioxidants that promote a healthy heart, brain, lungs, gut, skin, and nervous and vascular systems.
Whats the difference between red and green rooibos?
Both red and green rooibos are naturally herbal and caffeine-free. When rooibos leaves are oxidized, they turn a reddish-brown color. When left unoxidized, the leaves remain green.
Red rooibos tastes fruitier, while green rooibos tastes more herbal and earthy. However, green rooibos contains nearly twice the flavonoids and 10 times the antioxidants that red rooibos does. You can drink it hot or cold, and even sweeten it up with some milk and lemonade to improve the taste if you like.
Health Benefits of Rooibos
Rooibos tea has many antioxidants that fight disease in the body, which include the flavonoids aspalathin and nothofagin.
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Keep Your Skin Hydrated
The cold weather has a tendency to sap all the moisture from our skin, making it essential for men to take extra care with their skin during the winter months. The antioxidants found in rooibos fights free radicals to repair the damage done to your skin. Its anti-viral and anti-bacterial properties could also help those who struggle with acne and other skin conditions.
Currently, further research is being conducted at CPUT to determine how rooibos could protect the skin against the onset of skin cancer.
Rooibos Fights Oxidative Stress
Oxidative stress is caused by an excess of free radicals, unstable molecules that are created by some normal body processes but also by exposure to pollution, radiation, tobacco, and some medications. These unstable molecules need electrons to stabilize themselves, so they steal electrons from other nearby molecules. Our bodies are designed to tolerate some electron-stealing. Eating a varied diet with plenty of vegetables and fruits supplies us with common antioxidants like Vitamin C, which repair cell damage caused by oxidative stress.
Oxidative stress isnt just a cause of cancer it affects many of our body processes. Rats under oxidative stress hadbetter sperm quality when they drank rooibos.
Aspalathin is an antioxidant found only in rooibos. It improves hyperglycemia and glucose intolerance in obese diabetic mice and also reduces vascular inflammation caused by high blood glucose, which suggests that rooibos may help to prevent or treat diabetes. Aspalathin also protects the heart and lowers blood pressure.
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Support A Healthy Heart
Drinking rooibos tea can help to support your heart health in a few different ways. For starters, the antioxidants it provides have been linked to supported cardiovascular health. Another study demonstrated rooibos ability to support healthy blood pressure levels.
Rooibos also showed the potential to support healthy cholesterol levels in overweight adults who drank six cups of rooibos tea daily for six weeks. Pretty impressive!
Rooibos Science And Health
People have been talking and writing about the health benefits of Rooibos since the late 1960s. This widespread anecdotal evidence and the presence of a blend of antioxidants in the product, whet the research appetites of several scientists in South Africa and around the world. They are testing and analysing Rooibos intensively to evaluate the potential health properties and to study the complex mix of active ingredients in Rooibos. The active ingredients in Rooibos are polyphenolic compounds. Polyphenols are characteristic chemical structures produced by plants.
A convincing body of evidence confirming the potential health properties of Rooibos has been built up, mostly based on in vitro work and in vivo work . Many articles on the properties and health benefits of Rooibos have been published in the South African and international scientific literature, including several research articles in high-impact, peer-reviewed scientific journals.
The next step is to confirm that the same health benefits can be proven in the human body. A research team at the Cape Peninsula University of Technology, led by Dr Jeanine Marnewick, is now taking on the challenge of the first ever clinical Rooibos studies in adults who are at risk for developing heart disease. There study started in June 2007 and the first results are expected early in 2008. Their research is co-funded by the South African Rooibos Council.
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Risks And Side Effects
Is there caffeine in rooibos tea? No, its naturally caffeine-free, making it a good choice for those who are sensitive to even low levels of caffeine in other traditional teas.
Does rooibos tea make you sleepy? It shouldnt, however drinking herbal tea in general might help you to feel calmer, which can possibly make it easier to fall asleep. In fact, its common for parents in South Africa to give it to their children to help them sleep, even though it doesnt have any proven sedative effects.
Although its safe for most people to consume, rooibos tea side effects are still possible. You should take precaution if you plan on drinking large amounts of red rooibos tea, as research suggests that when consumed in large amounts it may have a subtle impact on male fertility .
Unlike other teas, rooibos tea contains no oxalic acid, which is great news for those suffering from kidney stones, as this tea is safe for them to drink. However some physicians suggest that this tea may negatively affect patients with liver disease, kidney disease and certain hormonal cancers. Its also possible that it interfere with chemotherapy treatments. If you suffer from any of these conditions, consult your physician before introducing it into your regular diet.
Health Benefit # : Antioxidant Rich
Get your lab coats, this is the chemistry Ready?
Antioxidants are the molecules that help prevent cell damage caused by the Free Radicals that your body produces. Essentially, antioxidants are stable enough to do without an extra electron and so work by donating this spare electron to the free radicals. And thats good!
Free Radicals are molecules that have an uneven number of electrons and are thus unstable. They are produced by the body as it processes food and as it reacts to its surrounding environment.
DID YOU KNOW: Air pollution, UV exposure, cigarette smoke, alcohol and, poor diet are some of the lifestyle/environmental factors that spur on the production of excess free radicals.
Because of their uneven number of electrons, free radicals react very easily with other molecules in your body. Such reactions are known as oxidation reactions and are quite normal and often useful. For instance, free radicals are used by your bodys cells to help fight infections.
However When the balance of free radicals and antioxidants in your body is disturbed, such reactions may become uncontrolled and oxidative stress ensues. And that’s NOT good!
In summary, when there are more free radicals in your body than antioxidants to keep them in check, they may start damaging or changing the structure of your bodys proteins, fatty tissues and even its DNA.
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How Cancer Develops
When a healthy cell is exposed to things such as cigarette smoke, alcohol, the sun, pesticides, chemicals in our environment, viruses or even a high fat/high salt diet, at high levels or for a long time, its DNA may be irreversibly damaged. This is the first step in the development of cancer, but does not always lead to cancer.
With ongoing exposure to these detrimental factors, the cell may lose its ability to control the cellular growth processes and become a cancer cell.
If the exposure continues, the cancer cell can start to multiply and form a mass of cells, called a tumour.
What Is Rooibos Tea
Rooibos tea is also known as red tea or red bush tea.
It is made using leaves from a shrub called Aspalathus linearis, usually grown on the western coast of South Africa .
Rooibos is a herbal tea and is not related to green or black tea.
Traditional rooibos is created by fermenting the leaves, which turns them a red-brown color.
Green rooibos, which is not fermented, is also available. It tends to be more expensive and grassier in flavor than the traditional version of the tea, while also boasting more antioxidants .
Rooibos tea is usually consumed like black tea. Some people add milk and sugar and rooibos iced tea, espressos, lattes and cappuccinos have also taken off.
Contrary to some claims, rooibos tea is not a good source of vitamins or minerals aside from copper and fluoride .
However, it is full of powerful antioxidants, which may offer health benefits.
Summary Rooibos tea is a traditional beverage made from the leaves of a South African shrub. It is consumed in a similar way to black tea and contains many antioxidants.
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Brewing Hot Rooibos Tea:
Proven Health Benefits Of Rooibos Tea
Rooibos tea has gained popularity in America in recent years, as many want to take advantage of its many proven health benefits.
The tea comes from the shrub Aspalathus Linearis, which is only found on the slopes of Cape of Good Hope in South Africa. While locals have been drinking this tea for hundreds of years, it only began being commercially traded in 1904.
Rooibos has a mild and aromatic taste. However, most drink it for its plethora of health benefits.
Its quite popular in Japan, Germany, Holland and England. According to WebMD, the tea has 50 times more antioxidants than green tea.
These antioxidants are known to thwart free radicals in the body that can damage cells and cause cancer. Its also rich in Vitamin C, low in tannins and may ease digestive problems.
Other studies have shown the tea may help strengthen the bones and teeth preventing osteoporosis, fractures and other related illnesses.
Many women in Japan drink this tea for its positive effect on the skin and hair. It has been known to clear skin of acne and prevent wrinkles.
Because its caffeine free, it may be drunk without limit and wont affect sleep cycles or cause insomnia as with some other popular teas. Finally, locals have even used it as a substitute for milk in colicky babies.
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Unlike Most Tea It Doesnt Promote Kidney Stones
Most teas, like green or black, contain a compound called oxalic acid. Its also found in chocolate, certain fruits, vegetables, and raw leafy greens.
Normally oxalic acid is naturally eliminated through your urine. But when you dont drink enough water, consume too much sugar, and have a diet high in oxalic acid, oxalate crystals can form .
This is one of the most common causes of kidney stones.
But rooibos tea doesnt contain oxalates. Thats why its a great alternative to green or black tea for those who are prone to getting kidney stones.
More About Benefits Of Rooibos Tea Food
5 HEALTH BENEFITS OF ROOIBOS TEA
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- Low in Tannins and Free from Caffeine and Oxalic Acid. Caffeine is a natural stimulant found in both black tea and green tea. Consuming moderate amounts of caffeine is generally safe.
- Packed With Antioxidants. Rooibos is associated with health benefits due to its high levels of health-promoting antioxidants, which include aspalathin and quercetin .
- May Boost Heart Health. Antioxidants in rooibos are linked to a healthier heart . This may happen in different ways . First, drinking rooibos tea may have beneficial effects on blood pressure by inhibiting angiotensin-converting enzyme .
- May Reduce Cancer Risk. Test-tube studies note that the antioxidants quercetin and luteolin, which are present in rooibos tea, can kill cancer cells and prevent tumor growth .
- May Benefit People With Type 2 Diabetes. Rooibos tea is the only known natural source of the antioxidant aspalathin, which animal studies suggest may have anti-diabetic effects .
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ARE THERE HEALTH BENEFITS TO DRINKING ROOIBOS TEA?
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THE BENEFITS OF ROOIBOS TEA | TEA FORTE
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Claudia Thompson Phd Rd
An analysis of the pros and cons of rooibos tea shows that the high antioxidant content may offer wellness advantages. However, be aware that some side effects have occasionally been reported. Since research on the herb is limited, check with your doctor before taking it.
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May Boost Heart Health
Antioxidants in rooibos are linked to a healthier heart (
ACE indirectly increases blood pressure by causing your blood vessels to contract.
In a study in 17 people, drinking rooibos tea inhibited ACE activity 3060 minutes after ingestion (
However, this did not translate to any changes in blood pressure.
There is more promising evidence that the tea can improve cholesterol levels.
In a study in 40 overweight adults at high risk of heart disease, six cups of rooibos tea daily for six weeks decreased bad LDL cholesterol while boosting good HDL cholesterol (
However, the same effect was not seen in healthy people.
Healthy cholesterol levels give added protection against various heart conditions, including heart attacks and strokes.
Summary Rooibos tea may benefit heart health by positively affecting blood pressure. It may also lower bad LDL cholesterol and raise good HDL cholesterol in those at risk of heart disease.
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