The health benefits of Hibiscus tea, also known as Agua De Jamaica, include relief from high blood pressure and high cholesterol, a disturbed digestive and immune system, and inflammatory problems. It helps to cure liver diseases and reduces the risk of cancer. It can also speed up the metabolism and help in healthy, gradual weight loss. It is rich in vitamin C, minerals, and various antioxidants, while also helping treat hypertension and anxiety.
Hibiscus tea is prepared by boiling parts of the hibiscus plant, known by its scientific name Hibiscus sabdariffa, particularly the flower. It is a very popular drink throughout the world and is often used as a medicinal tea. However, Hibiscus flowers have various local names, and it might be called by its other rather common name, "Roselle."
Hibiscus tea is ruby red and has a sour taste. Therefore, it is also known as sour tea and has a flavor similar to cranberry. It is widely available in the market throughout the tea-drinking world and can be consumed hot or cold, depending on your preference. This tea is low in calories and is caffeine-free.
Health Benefits of Hibiscus Tea
Hibiscus tea's various benefits, which would help keep the human body healthy and fit, are given below. Find them out and get healthier!
1. Manages Blood Pressure
A report from the AHA (American Heart Association), published in November 2008, states that consuming this tea lowers the blood pressure in pre-hypertensive and mildly hypertensive adults. It also states that 1/3 of adults in the United States suffer from high blood pressure, also called hypertension. A study conducted by Odigie IP suggests that it has antihypertensive and cardioprotective properties that can benefit people suffering from hypertension and those at high risks of cardiovascular diseases.
According to research done at Tufts University in Boston, Hibiscus tea can reduce blood pressure by up to 10 points because of its anti-inflammatory properties. For this drastic improvement to occur, you need to regularly consume three cups of this tea every day for a few weeks. Also, it has diuretic properties that increase urination, simultaneously lower blood pressure.
2. Lowers Cholesterol
It helps lower levels of "bad" LDL cholesterol from the body, thereby protecting against heart diseases and protecting blood vessels from damage. Hibiscus tea's hypolipidemic and hypoglycemic properties can be beneficial for those who suffer from blood sugar disorders like diabetes. A research study conducted on patients with type II diabetes suggests that Hibiscus sour tea consumption lowers cholesterol, triglycerides, and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol, which helps manage this unpredictable disease.
3. Protects Liver
Research studies have also suggested that Hibiscus tea's antioxidant properties may also help in treating liver diseases. Antioxidants help protect your body from diseases because they neutralize the free radicals present in body tissues and cells. Therefore, we can confidently say that drinking Hibiscus tea could increase your lifespan by maintaining good overall health.
4. Anti-cancer Properties
Hibiscus tea contains hibiscus protocatechuic acid, which has anti-tumor and antioxidant properties. A study conducted by the Department and Institute of Biochemistry at the Chung Shan Medical and Dental College in Taichung, Taiwan, suggests that Hibiscus slows down cancerous cells' growth by inducing apoptosis, commonly known as programmed cell death.
5. Anti-Inflammatory and Antibacterial Agent
It is rich in ascorbic acid, also known as vitamin C. It is an essential nutrient required by your body to boost and stimulate the activity of the immune system. Hibiscus tea is also known for its anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties. Therefore, it prevents you from catching a cold and flu. It is also used to treat discomfort caused by fever due to its cooling effect.
6. Relieves Menstrual Pain
The health benefits of Hibiscus tea also include relief from cramps and menstrual pain. It helps restore hormonal balance as well, which can reduce the symptoms of menstruation like mood swings, depression, and overeating.
7. Acts as Antidepressant Agent
Hibiscus tea contains vitamins and minerals like flavonoids, which have antidepressant properties. Consumption of Hibiscus tea can help calm down the nervous system, and it may reduce anxiety and depression by creating a relaxed sensation in the mind and body.
8. Improves Digestion
Many people drink Hibiscus tea to improve digestion. It regularizes both urination and bowel movements. Since it has diuretic properties, it is also used to treat constipation, which helps you lose weight and improve your gastrointestinal system's health and avoid colorectal cancer.
9. Satiates Thirst
Hibiscus tea is also used as sports drinks to satiate thirst. For this purpose, an iced form of Hibiscus tea is typically consumed. Many people include it in their diet since this variety of tea can cool down the body very fast.
10. Helps in Weight Loss
Hibiscus tea is beneficial for losing weight. If you consume food rich in carbohydrates, which means that it contains sugar and starch, you are likely to gain weight. However, research studies have suggested that Hibiscus extract lowers the absorption of starch and glucose and may help in weight loss. Hibiscus inhibits amylase production, which helps in the absorption of carbohydrates and starch, so drinking Hibiscus tea prevents the absorption from occurring. Therefore, Hibiscus tea is found in many weight loss products.
11. Both Summer and Winter Drink
You can drink Hibiscus tea either as a hot tea or an iced tea. If you want to keep yourself warm in the winter, brew it and drink it straight away. It only takes a few minutes to make. In case you do not want to drink it hot, perhaps in the summer, you can drink Hibiscus iced tea. It takes about 20 minutes for preparation, and then you can cool yourself off in a healthy, refreshing way.
Hibiscus tea has a taste that is very similar to cranberry juice. It can be described as tart, so you can add sugar or honey to increase the sweetness. You can also try adding spices like cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, and ginger, depending on your taste.
Side Effects of Hibiscus Tea
Although Hibiscus tea is a health enhancer and a natural weight loss booster, there are some possible side effects you should be aware of.
Blood Pressure: The health benefits of Hibiscus tea include lowering blood pressure (anti-hypertensive property). Therefore, it is not recommended for people who already have low blood pressure and a condition called hypotension. It may cause faintness, dizziness, and even damage the heart or brain if consumed by anyone with low blood pressure.
Pregnancy and Fertility: Hibiscus tea is not recommended for pregnant women, mainly due to its emmenagogue effects, which may stimulate menstruation or blood flow in the uterus or pelvic region. For those undergoing hormonal treatments or taking birth control pills, it is recommended to consult your health specialist regarding the consumption of Hibiscus tea.
Hallucinatory Effect: Some people may feel intoxicated or experience hallucinations after drinking Hibiscus tea. Therefore, you should be cautious until you know how your body reacts to the tea. Don't drive a car or try anything particularly dangerous until you know its effects on your system.
Allergy: Some people might develop allergic reactions such as itchy red eyes, sinus, or hay fever when consuming Hibiscus tea.
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