There was a time when ‘a cup of tea’ meant some tea leaves brewed in hot water, topped with a little milk, sugar and drunk with breakfast or around 4 or 5’o clock. Today unless you specify the name, brand, flush and type of tea leaf, you are unlikely to receive any. The world of tea has grown to embrace leaves from across the globe. From black, white, green, oolong, rooibos, fruit, flower or herb tisanes and blooming teas, there are as many variations as there are people. Moreover, each variety offers its own unique property; from uplifting, energy boosting brews to relaxing, calming beverages with some blends that can aid healing and a sense of well-being.
Most people rely on tea for a morning pick-me-up; a burst of invigorating energy to face the challenges and pressures of the day ahead. Steep 1 or 1.5 tsp of Black tea, loose leaf or 1 bag in hot water for 2-3 minutes, strain and enjoy it with your breakfast. The caffeine will kick-start your system and will give you the much needed boost. A Darjeeling, Earl Grey or English breakfast is a good choice. Try White tea for an anti-oxidant rich yet low in caffeine brew. It’s the least processed of all teas with a subtle, floral flavor that makes for a healthy, refreshing drink. One of the brands at the store, Golden Tips carries an elegant silver needle white tea with jasmine blossom.
Having a bad day? Feeling tired and miserable? Sip on a cup of fragrant lemon, peppermint or verbena scented green tea. Its warmth and anti-oxidants will ease the stress while giving you a break to think things through. A good idea is to keep some Typhoo green tea bags on hand in the purse or office drawer.
Sitting down to read a good book or watching a movie or just chatting up with old friends? Brew a large batch of something aromatic and comforting like Tea-a-me’s apple cinnamon tea or Radhika’s black tea with rose petals or Clipper’s fennel infused tea. But if you’re down with a cold or cough, then good old masala chai spiked with tulsi is the best beverage to drink. Switch it around and use ginger to soothe an upset stomach.
Struggling with insomnia? Unable to let go and fall asleep? Try drinking an infusion of chamomile and lavender in the night. These flowers are trusted to relax the muscles and soothe the mind, helping one to sleep longer and deeply. Try TM Organics’ blend or the Chado blend with mint. If you’re looking for a decaffeinated drink, sip some Rooibos tea; a South African leaf that is not from the same plant as black, green or white tea but is now regarded as a tea as well.
In conclusion, here is a handy, little chart for reference the next time you find yourself craving tea when a particular mood strikes:
HAPPY: Herbal teas with lemon verbena
ENERGIZED: Green tea or black chai
PRODUCTIVE: Green and black teas
CALM: Teas with chamomile or lemongrass
REST: Herbal teas with chamomile and lavender
CURING: Chai, herbal blends with ginger or chamomile
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