Red tea: An ancient brew
For the Khoisans, a tribe of South African Bushmen, it’s a centuries-old drink. It was “discovered” by Europeans in 1772, after famed botanist Carl Peter Thunberg made note of it. Shortly thereafter, Dutch settlers began cultivating it as a substitute for black tea, an expensive commodity at the time.
An attempt in the 1930s to introduce red tea to the world ended in disaster, and it took until the '60s for the tea to be rediscovered. In 1968, a desperate South African mother found that the tea soothed her baby’s colic. Annetjie Theron went on to develop skin care products with rooibos. In 1984, it gained international attention when Japan began marketing rooibos as an anti-ageing product.
Quercetin, another powerful antioxidant found in rooibos tea, has been linked to preventing. It is anti-inflammatory, which reduces blood pressure, and it also scavenges free radicals like other antioxidants. It promotes an increase in HDL cholesterol (good cholesterol) and inhibits the LDL cholesterol (bad cholesterol) from binding to the walls of arteries and blood vessels. This means added protection against various hearts conditions, including atherosclerosis, heart attacks, and strokes.
Good for Skin
The alpha hydroxy acid and zinc content of red tea are very good for the skin. You can also try applying some red tea powder directly to the skin to relieve acne, pimples, sunburns or related skin conditions. Alpha-hydroxy acids are not found naturally from too many sources, but in terms of cosmetic products, it has become very popular, particularly because it can reduce the signs of wrinkles and other premature aging symptoms. Also, they are commonly found in chemical peels, which revitalize the skin and leave it fresh and invigorated with a healthy glow. However, there has been some controversy about commercial uses of alpha hydroxy acid, so it is always better to get it from a natural source, like red rooibos tea!
Even people with kidney stone problems can drink as much red rooibos tea as they want as there is no oxalic acid in the beverage. Many times, people with kidney stones are discouraged from drinking too much tea of other varieties because of that exacerbating ingredient. Oxalic acid is a crystal-forming substance, so it can make the presence of calcium stones or other painful growths in the kidney even worse by making them larger. That won’t be a problem with rooibos tea!
Red rooibos tea is an excellent thirst quencher and does wonders for active people like professional athletes, hyperactive children and those who travel often, whether for pleasure or business. Most people prefer to drink rooibos tea in its natural form without any sweeteners, and those who simply want a refreshing drink without a caffeine boost, rooibos is the ideal choice.
A Few Words of Caution
Despite all of these health benefits of rooibos tea, there can be a downside for some people. Since rooibos is so powerful, it can interfere with treatments for various conditions, including chemotherapy for cancer patients. Also, rooibos has shownestrogenic activities in certain studies, so it might not be a good idea to use if you have a hormone-sensitive cancer like breast cancer. Finally, if you have existing kidney or liver conditions, rooibos might be more harmful than helpful. It should be used as a preventative measure for these conditions, not a cure. Make sure you speak to your doctor before adding any new dietary elements or beverages to your normal routine, particularly one as powerful as rooibos tea!
Other than that, enjoy and drink to your good health!