By Lisa Maliga, copyright 2021
I’ve experimented with drinking various types of teas for many years. But in March of 2020, I wanted more than just my usual jasmine green tea. I wanted to make sure I was getting all the health and antioxidant benefits in my daily breakfast tea.
I began adding more herbs such as blue butterfly pea tea. Blue butterfly pea is a tropical flower from Southeast Asia and India. It’s caffeine-free. Due to its color, it contains loads of antioxidants. Many attributes are listed such as how it’s supposed to help blood flow to the eyes, lowers blood sugar, and helps rejuvenate skin. I make no claims and just love the fact that it’s a vivid shade of royal blue and turns to royal purple when a squeeze of fresh lemon is added to the tea. The taste is very mild.
For flavor, hibiscus is my favorite. The aroma and taste are reminiscent of cranberries. As with most plants, there are different varieties and colors, but the most common is the vibrant red flower [Hibiscus rosa-sinensis]. Drinking these petals lowers high blood pressure and may assist in weight loss. I’ve also seen well-steeped hibiscus flowers used to condition and color hair. Found in Asia and the Pacific Islands, Hawaii, Mexico, Africa, India, and the warm regions of the United States. Like any tea, it can be served hot or cold.
The most recent addition to my tea is now my new main ingredient: pine needles. Yes, they smell like a Christmas tree. They have that distinctive herbal taste but since mixed with hibiscus, the taste is lighter. Pine needles are abundant in vitamin C, so they’re the perfect addition to this healthy combination. They are also rich in suramin, which may help prevent blood clots.
Another benefit from pine needle tea may be improved eyesight and intuition. Think of how the words pine needle and pineal are similar. The pineal gland is your third eye and when it’s open, your intuition and creativity flows.
Also, pine needles can be very easy to find if you have certain types of pine trees in your area. In America, the most common are the Eastern White Pine, the Scotch pine and red pine. Pine tree needles from tops of mountains and hills are considered better than those at lower altitudes. You shouldn’t gather the needles if near a road or street as they’ll contain pollution.
Yew, ponderosa, and Norfolk pine are NOT recommended for consumption. It’s also advisable to avoid drinking pine needle tea if pregnant. To find the right type of pine needles in your area, contact a botanist or consult with someone who knows how to identify edible plants. This is also helpful if you live in areas where blue butterfly pea flowers and hibiscus flowers grow. Both lovely flowers can be brewed in fresh or dried form.
For sweetener, I use fresh lemons. As most of you know, lemons are renowned for a high concentration of vitamin C. The colors I drink every morning include bright red, forest green, lapis lazuli blue and sunshine yellow.
What could be better than drinking a rainbow?
Blue Butterfly Pea Tea [dried flowers] https://amzn.to/310BoAM
Blue Butterfly Pea Tea [powder] https://amzn.to/3CTrTQH
Hibiscus flowers, dried https://amzn.to/3DPe0nY
Hibiscus flowers, [tea bags] https://amzn.to/32yZNxQ
Pine needles [tea bags] https://amzn.to/3HTfWOC
Jasmine green tea bags https://amzn.to/310DzEs