Herbal Tea Time - Teas for the Mind

Herbal Tea 

With Mama Tea, Anna Louise Simpson

Herbal tea is very beneficial for everyone for lots of different reasons but the main one is that herbal teas do not contain caffeine.  Although caffeine in small doses is good for stimulating the brain, it can over-stimulate the central nervous system.Caffeine can also result in increased heart rate, increased blood pressure and is also a diuretic, so it can leave you feeling dehydrated and fatigued. It also contains tannins, which restrict your absorption of iron.

   Aside from that main benefit, some of the herbs are also good for different times of the day. For example, ginger herbal tea is very energizing and therefore is a great tea to drink first thing in the morning, whereas chamomile tea is calming and good for making you sleepy, so is good for after dinner.

The individual herbs contained in herbal teas have qualities that have traditionally been used to help with all sorts of ailments and problems, as well as promoting general well being. Some of the best herbs for mental wellbeing are Lemon Balm, Rose Petals, Spearmint Leaves, Chamomile Flowers and Rose Hip.

Lemon balm (Melissa Officinalis)

Lemon Balm was regarded by the German herbalist, Paracelsus, as an “elixir of youth”. Lemon Balmis relaxing for the central nervous system and as such is a fantastic herb to take for mild depression, panic attacks, palpitations, and anxiety - especially if the anxiety causes indigestion. It is still used as a remedy for post-natal depression and also helps with tension headaches.

Rose Petals (Rosa Gallica)

Rose petals are not only calming but are positively uplifting for all the senses, therefore is a powerful herb for depression. During the Middle Ages, Rose Petals were used as an effective remedy for depression. Rose Petals are often used to remedy emotional problems, especially vulnerability, sadness and tiredness, so it is a wonderful herb to have in a herbal tea.

Spearmint (Mentha Spicata)

The word mint comes from the Greek word “menthe”. According to Greek mythology, Hades, ruler of the Underworld, fell in love with the nymph Menthe. Persephone, Hades's wife, became wildly jealous and began to trample Menthe. Hades rushed forward and transformed Menthe into a shrub to keep her near him always. Persephone was appeased, thinking that Menthe would be trampled for eternity beneath the feet of passersby, but Hades gave Menthe a wonderfully sweet fragrance he could cherish each time he passed by.

Whilst peppermint is more widely used in herbal medicine, its high menthol content can be irritating to the digestive system. Spearmint, which lacks menthol, is therefore used as a gentle alternative. Spearmint is extremely calming for body and mind and is also a wonderfully herb for all sorts of digestive complaints, which are often a symptom of depression.

Chamomile Flowers (Anthemis nobilis)

It was the Egyptians who first recorded the use of chamomile tea, in a papyrus that dates from 1550 BC. It was known to the Romans as well as the Celts and Egyptians, and is still regarded as one of the most basic herbal teas to have in a modern cupboard. Chamomile is well known for its calming properties. It is extremely effective at helping with anxiety and insomnia, again another common symptom of depression.

Rose Hip (Rosa Canina)

In the Middle Ages it was commonly used in folk remedies for chest problems.Rose Hip played a very important part in the provision of vitamin C to British children during World War 2 to replace the normal source from citrus fruits.

Rose hip is a wonderful herb that boosts the immune system and relieves stress and tiredness. It also relieves menstrual cramps, so is very hip indeed!

About Mama Tea and the Mama

Anna Louise Simpson was a corporate lawyer before becoming a stay-at-home mum, but during her second pregnancy, she found it difficult to find herbal teas that were good for her pregnancy ailments that tasted good. Therefore she decided to work with both a Master Tea Blender and a Medical Herbalist to come up the Mama Tea range, which was launched in April 2009.

Anna Louise has a particular interest in mental wellbeing, as she found herself suffering post natal depression after her second pregnancy. However, she discovered that creating her new business helped her to beat her depression, “planning Mama Tea gave me a goal to aim for and that helped so much in overcoming my depression. As a result, I thought it was really important to try to incorporate some of the best herbs for anxiety and depression into my new herbal blends”.

Mama Tea is unique as it is a range of herbal teas that taste good! All of the blends have been beautifully crafted by a Master Tea Blender to be really tasty. This has proved to be a huge advantage, as the range was originally created for pregnant and nursing women, but now everyone else is drinking them too, as they taste so good. We created a tea for sickness, heartburn, birth preparation and breastfeeding and an antioxidant tea but we blended so many herbs in all of these teas, that they have benefits for everyone.

Mama Tea is on sale in Waitrose, Tesco, Ocado and online at www.mamatea.com as well as lots of other retailers and health food shops.

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