Herbal teasare caffeine-free and can be enjoyed hot or cold, any time of day—there is no need worry about disrupting one’s sleep patterns. Making tea is a delicate, peaceful practice, infused with calming fragrances and is best enjoyed during quiet moments. Depending on the source, pre-blended herbal teas can be pricey. A cheaper and more rewarding practice is making teas at home. Toronto is home to many herbal and all-natural stores where herbs and other ingredients can be bought in larger quantities to save money and time. To guarantee freshness and potency, and to maintain the best medicinal and remedial qualities, all of these herbs can be grown in the home or in the garden.
Many herbal teas have natural medicinal qualities, but it’s important to receive proper medical advice before regularly drinking them. For those in the Toronto area, the professionals at Integracare provide quality, person-centered healthcare plans with compassion and collaboration with clients and their families. Registered Practical Nurses and other Caregivers are happy to offer advice on which herbs are safe to enjoy and won’t counteract with medications or potentially cause allergic reactions or other sensitivities.
Below is a list of simple herbs that can be grown or bought, to enjoy alone, or in a blend of one’s choosing. Simply steep a handful of fresh leaves or a couple of teaspoons if using dried herbs. You may vary the amount according to personal preference for potency and flavour.
Refreshing and minty, these steeped leaves can be sipped hot or cold. Brewed as an herbal tea, peppermint may relieve digestive issues. Mint grows and spreads wildly in gardens, so consider keeping the plant contained in its own planter or pot to prevent it from taking over. The leaves can be plucked before the flowering stage. They’ll take on a more bitter quality if left too long on the plant.
Traditionally used to soothe inflammation of the digestive system (from mouth to stomach), this herb is also used topically, popular in ointments and creams for rashes and other irritations. As a tea, it is helpful for a long list of maladies, including, sore throat, mouth irritations, gastric ulcers, swollen lymph nodes, fever; plus, it can be applied topically for many skin issues.
This herb is high in vitamin A and B, calcium, potassium, and magnesium. It also contains levels of inulin which assists the body is processing sugars. Dandelion tea is an excellent detoxifier.
Not just for cats—this herb can be brewed into a tea that helps with upset stomach, anxiety, and tension. Be sure to find fresh or dried food grade catnip from an herbal store, or you can grow your own cat grass in your window.
Also high in A and B vitamins, nettle is an excellent source of calcium, potassium, magnesium, manganese, and iron. It is an earthy tea that can be enjoyed daily hot or cold with some lemon.
Helpful for easing anxiety and tension, lemon balm has antiviral properties, and it can aid with stomach problems, including nausea and gas.
For other herbal teas you can blend together, A Delightful Home provides a long list of varieties to try. Remember to consult with your in-home Private Nurse or Caregiver before regularly consuming or topically applying any of the herbs on this list.
Ryan Yarbrough is a small business consultant, speaker, and the manager at Davis Financial Services, a small business consulting firm.