Rooibos – is it really better than tea?

Rooibos – a powerhouse beverage for your health!

Rooibos (pronounced “Roy-boss”), is a plant grown solely in South Africa and is not related to the traditional tea plant (Camellia sinensis), yet we brew it just like tea. Known in Afrikaans as “red-bush” it is widely consumed in South Africa and has become increasingly popular in Australia.

The naturally caffeine-free plant Aspalathus linearis, is packed with many antioxidants and some specific ones that have been shown in studies to fight cancer, be anti-inflammatory, and protect blood cells from radiation.

Rooibos is very low in tannins and no oxalic acid, which in turn is easier on the gut than traditional tea and is suitable for people prone to kidney stones. Tannins in black tea have been shown to prevent the absorption of iron, especially non-heme iron from plant sources. Rooibos is therefore a better choice of drink if a person has an iron deficiency.

Micro-nutrients iron, zinc, copper and manganese are part of the rooibos leaf and studies have shown that low levels of these minerals are associated with anxiety and depression.  Calcium and magnesium are well known to increase bone strength, both of which are also found in rooibos.

Rooibos is well reported to the super-rich in a group of polyphenols called flavonoids. These powerful antioxidants have been reported as providing many significant health benefits. The types of polyphenols in rooibos are different from those found in abundance in green and black tea, so their health benefits would differ.

Quercetin and Luteolin flavonoids found in rooibos are really potent antioxidants. Lab studies indicate these antioxidants can force cancer cells to undergo programmed cell death. They may also act as powerful anti-inflammatory agents.

Another 2 flavonoids in rooibos Orientin and Rutin — were shown to protect human blood cells exposed to radiation from cancer-associated changes. In animal studies, orientin prevented oxidative damage to the liver and reduced damage to the bone marrow and gastrointestinal tract. Rutin may also help strengthen capillary walls.

Specifically, and only found in rooibos is Aspalathin. This makes up between 4-12% of the plant! Aspalathin has been shown to possess biological activity that imparts it with multiple health beneficial effects. These include antioxidant, antidiabetic, cardioprotective, antihypertensive and antimutagenic effects. Given its multiplicity of biological effects, aspalathin is a natural phytochemical and  drinking rooibos should be promoted.

In summary, rooibos is a plant that we brew like tea, yet is packed beyond its humble appearance, with many potential benefits. We stock organic rooibos and also a range of flavours, including the addition of berries or chai spices. Try this naturally caffeine free beverage and be comforted knowing that it’s truly helping you in your quest for improved health and wellbeing.

To buy our Rooibos – click here   Rooibos

To Brew :

  1. Scoop one teaspoon of dry rooibos leaves, per standard (250ml) cup, into an infuser*.
  2. Place the infuser into the cup
  3. Pour in freshly boiled hot water
  4. Allow to brew for  3 – 5 minutes to get a full flavour (adjust the time according to your preferred strength)
  5. Lift out the infuser from the cup
  6. Enjoy your freshly brewed rooibos!

Tips:

If you use a large cup or mug, adjust the “1 teaspoon per 250ml” guide accordingly.  A bigger infuser is better for larger mugs or travel cups.

Try not to overfill the infuser, as the water needs to be able to circulate around the leaves

If you choose to add milk, or mylk, to your rooibos– we suggest you add it in after it has been brewed, to ensure you only add as much milk as you like. Cups these days are robust enough not to need to add milk first to stop the china cracking from the heat of the water.

Rooibos makes an excellent iced tea and is fantastic for hydration. Try our Rooberry blend. Rooberry

Our favourite infuser for rooibos is a fine mesh style that fits over most cups and mugs and has a lid to keep the tea warm whilst brewing and a drip saucer to sit in between making cuppas. You can also re-brew rooibos leaves

*Our best-selling infuser is: Mug Infuser Stainless Steel with lid/saucer 

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