Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Uses for Tea You Probably Never Thought Of



Tea makes an amazing beverage hot or cold.  It also does a number of things such as serve as an antiseptic for wounds, a natural beauty product, and a kitchen deodorizer.  There’s far more uses for tea than this list contains.  It is, however, a starting point for you as you make the most out of everything you buy for your home this year.

Here are some additional ways to make the most of the tea you’ve bought:

  • Give your linens a boost of freshness.  Dried tea works like dried herbs by infusing its beautiful aroma into clothing.  Select Earl Grey for its floral undertones, lavender or jasmine.
  • Feed your houseplants.  Have leftover tea that you don’t know what to do with?  Give it to your ferns and houseplants.  They’ll benefit from the extra acid.
  • Fertilize roses.  Brew your tea and then use the black or green leaves as food for your rosebushes.  Scatter them around, add mulch and water to help them thrive.
  • Condition your hair.  Skip the store-bought beauty products and opt for something natural.  Steep strong black or green tea and apply it to wet, shampooed hair.  When hair is dry, rinse it out for soft, luxurious locks.
  • Take the itch out of pink eye.  Use a warm tea bag as a compress.  It’ll take the itch right out of your eye(s).
  •  Cook with it.  There’s so much you can do with tea!  Use it to flavor soups and rice.  Add matcha powder to desserts and dressings.
  • Make your fridge fresh again.  Keep dried tea leaves in a bowl in your fridge.  They’ll help absorb odors.
  • Tenderize meat.  Pour black tea over meat and place it in the fridge to marinate it.  It’ll make it tender and easier to eat.


Now you have even more reason to buy and use tea.  Pay close attention to the different varieties that you choose as some types of tea work better than others to clean, disinfect, and flavor.  Experiment with different combinations to see which works best for you and your home.  You’ll be surprised at how much bang for your buck you get out of each little tea bag.

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Study Finds Chamomile Tea Reduces Mortality Rate in Women



The health benefits of chamomile tea is undisputed and a recent study published in the journal The Gerontologist claims that sipping the calming beverage decreases mortality rates in older adults.  Researchers from the University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston tested their theory on 1,600 men and women from the Hispanic Established Populations for Epidemiologic Study of the Elderly for a period of seven years.  What they learned from analyzed data was that chamomile lowered the risk of death from all causes among the women in the group by 29 percent.

The difference was found despite a variation in demographics, health conditions, and behaviors.  Sadly, chamomile didn’t affect the men studied the same way it did the female participants.  Day-to-day household activities including managing the family’s health was thought to have made some women’s bodies respond positively to herbs.

Chamomile has been used in the past as a way to boost health.  Prior studies show that it strengthens the immune system.  Participants in a 2005 study published in the journal consumed five cups of chamomile tea for two weeks and showed increased levels of hippurate which boosts immunity and fights bacteria.  It stays in the body for a long time which provides defense against colds.

WebMD notes that chamomile, particularly German chamomile, treats chest cold irritation, wounds that take a long time to heal, abscesses, gum inflammation, and skin conditions such as psoriasis, eczema, chickenpox, and diaper rash.  Chamomile tea comes in loose leaf and bagged varieties and is an ingredient in liquid extract, tinctures concentrated in alcohol, creams, and ointments.


Studying other populations lead to greater proof of chamomile’s healing properties.  For now, we encourage Hispanic women to drink their fill of chamomile tea.  After all, it promotes good health and well-being which are definite advantages.

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Make Your Morning Beautiful with a Cup of Hot Tea





Caffeine junkies, skip the long line at the coffeehouse this morning by making the switch to hot tea.  While getting ready for work, put on the kettle and wait for the all-too-familiar whistle of it releasing steam.  Steep your favorite flavored tea in a travel tumbler, add the appropriate amount of Stevia, honey or A2 milk (if you prefer drinking it that way), and bask in the glow of a feel-good beverage with beautiful benefits.

Green Tea 

Loaded with antioxidants, green tea is known as one of the healthiest drinks on the planet. Known to improve brain function, help with fat loss and even lower the risk of cancer! 

Cinnamon

Add a little spice to your beverage and watch your complexion change with increased blood circulation.  Cinnamon adds fiber to the body which helps it eliminate waste products and toxins.  Say goodbye to acne and hello to an abundancy of smiles.

Stevia

If you like your tea sweet, skip the sugar and go for the Stevia.  It’s a natural and calorie-free sweetener that contains calcium, potassium, iron, phosphorus, magnesium, zinc, and niacin in whole leaf form.  Save your waistline and prevent insulin spikes by switching sucrose for Stevia.

A2 Milk

For some people, a2 milk is easier to digest.  It comes in whole milk, reduced-fat (2% fat), and non-fat varieties.  Instead of using flavored creamers, add a2 milk to your tea for good bones and teeth and plump, healthy skin.


As if you needed an excuse to drink more hot tea.  You already love the beverage and now you’ll have reason to make it or order it often.  Give your skin the extra boost it needs to look great by drinking green tea, sprinkling cinnamon on the top of your favorite chai, opting for Stevia, and adding a splash or two of A2 milk.

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Top Five Tea Cups



Developing a daily ritual that involves brewing and drinking tea is something many people do.  The healing properties of tea transcend the physical.  Some believe in the emotional benefits of drinking tea because it relaxes them and forces them to live in the moment.  Spiritual leaders teach the importance of patience as tea leaves swirl to release their fragrance and flavor.

No matter what your reason is for drinking tea, you’re going to need a cup to place it in after it’s brewed.  With so many options to choose from, selecting one proves difficult.  The top five tea cups we’ve seen so far this year include selections from Anthropologie and Kate Spade.


Here are the best tea cups in terms of color, pattern, and size:

  1. Crate and Barrel Designer Tea Cup.  Artistic people love the look of this beautifully ornate tea cup.  Each cup and saucer is stamped with the artist’s signature and the year 2014.
  2. Anthropologie Nature Table Tea CupLovers of contemporary designs find this tea cup irresistible.  Created by artist Lou Rota, it represents the vintage curves of yesteryears with illustrated flora perfect for modern times.



  3.  Kate Spade Platinum Tea CupMothers love the classic look of this darling tea cup.  Complete with gold vines, it’s the type of design that never goes out of style. 
  4.   Wedgewood TeawareKnown for its beautiful designs, Wedgewood makes a treasured gift.  Colorful and attractive, the bone china cups have gold rims adorning them. 
  5.   Ahmad Tea’s Traditional Tea GlassesPerfect for teat time for two, our tea glasses are used over and over again.  Etched into the glass is The Ahmad Tea lettering and ‘teapot and leaf’ log.  Seeing your brewed tea is almost as delightful as smelling it and tasting it! 



Now that you have a better idea of what type of tea cups sell well, you’ll find purchasing one for your daily tea ritual easier.  Select a tea cup that appeals to you visually.  Find one that holds an ample amount of beverage.  You’re going to get a lot of use out of the cup you decide to buy.

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Flaunt Your Culinary Creativity by Cooking with Tea




Think of your favorite chefs and what sets them apart from other culinary geniuses.  It’s likely a combination of technique and ingredients that impresses you, right?  What if imitating the culinary experts you admire was as easy as using extraordinary foods, beverages, herbs, and spices to create fine restaurant quality dishes for your family and friends?  Would you spend more money on ingredients such as high quality teas and less money on eating out?

Tea as Broths and Marinades

Rather than use plain water, oils or creams, why not get creative by infusing them with loose leaf tea?  Think of what flavor combinations work best and get busy adding fresh basil, mint, rosemary, and thyme to your favorite brewed teas.  Use salt and pepper and fresh vegetables to create a hearty broth, dressing or sauce from hot or cold tea.

Tea as Rubs for Meat

Combine herbs, spices, and tea in a blender or spice grinder.  Massage the rub into the meat of your choice (steak, chicken, and salmon are a few suggestions).   Bake, grill or broil it for a delicious meal worthy of applause.

Tea as Flavoring for Baked Goods

Many people drink tea with dessert.  What about going one step further by including tea as an ingredient in your sweet treats?  Served hot or cold, tea infused desserts are rich in flavor and easy to prepare.  Add loose leaf tea to cookies, cakes, and tarts.

Tea is more than just a beverage for today’s creative cooks.  It’s a versatile ingredient used to flavor baked goods, soups, and even meat.  Tea makes great spice rubs, marinades, and broths.  Still not sure how to use your favorite loose leaf flavors? Pick up a box or a tin or two and begin experimenting with different flavor combinations.