Mix up your morning brew with these herbal alternatives

Nothing beats a warm cup of tea, but once winter rolls around, you can end up chain drinking it to the point of liquid boredom.

So, what do you do if the unthinkable happens and you get sick of your go-to brew? We’d recommend switching things up with a range of herbal teas, promising interesting new flavours and potential health benefits in every cup.

And regardless of the variety, herbal tea is a great way to drink more water and cut back on caffeine.

Chamomile tea
The ancient Egyptians loved chamomile, using the flowers to treat ailments and brewing the tea for colds.

Studies suggest chamomile can help manage pain, but more research needs to be done. At the very least, though, a warming cup of tea might have a placebo or calming effect, even if it doesn’t affect the actual pain.

If you struggle with sleep, it could be worth drinking a cup of chamomile an hour or so before bedtime, as preliminary research suggests it can help with insomnia.

Read more: Here’s the science on three traditional sleep remedies

Peppermint tea

Peppermint oil can help ease bloating, cramps and wind – particularly if you suffer from irritable bowel syndrome – and drinking tea is an easy way of upping your peppermint intake.

Read more: Teas to soothe an upset tummy

If you find yourself drifting off at your desk, the sharp smell of peppermint tea could help give you a boost and make you feel more alert. A 2009 study suggested peppermint – as well as cinnamon – could increase alertness and reduce frustration in drivers. At the very least, a cheeky peppermint tea is a great way to freshen up your breath.

Rooibos

Pronounced ‘roy-boss’ and also known as red bush, this South African tea has a slightly sweet, woody taste. Plus, it’s packed full of antioxidants.

It has been suggested rooibos tea can help soothe muscle cramps and diarrhoea. It also contains fewer tannins than a cup of green or black tea, which can allow the body to absorb more iron.

Echinacea

Echinacea tea has a distinctive tongue tingling effect. As it’s quite a strong taste on its own, it’s often brewed with softer flavours such as raspberry or elderberry.

Read more: What tea you should try based on your zodiac sign

Echinacea is loaded with antioxidants such as flavonoids, which can help your body function more efficiently. Traditionally, echinacea tea has been used to fight colds – more research needs to be done to confirm this, but anecdotally, its botanical nature does feel fortifying.

Ginger tea

With a fiery, sharp taste, not everyone is a fan of ginger tea. However, if you do like some punch to your brew, you could reap some of the purported benefits of ginger.

It is suggested ginger can help ease nausea, and studies also associate it with a reduced risk of high blood pressure. If you’re not a fan of straight ginger, add lemon and honey to your cup, or go for teabags where the ginger is paired with another flavour.

What’s your go-to tea in the morning? Do you like herbal teas?

– With PA

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