Hibiscus Tea: What Is It For, Benefits and How To Prepare
The Hibiscus tea has been used as a medicinal preparation for a long time in Africa and Asia; and due to its multiple and diverse health benefits, it was now discovered by the rest of the world. The drink, made from a plant of a reddish color, presents the same beautiful tonality and an intense and delicious flavor.
The beverage is rich in vitamins and minerals, as well as antioxidant compounds, and can help prevent various diseases, decrease bad cholesterol, and be a great ally of weight loss through a diuretic action.
Check out these and other benefits of hibiscus tea and discover the best way to prepare the infusion.
By drinking hibiscus tea, you are ingesting plenty of properties that are beneficial to the body's functioning. The nutritional components may vary according to the type of hibiscus, planting site, and even the grinding process, but in general, 1 cup of 200mL with 4g of hibiscus, has about 40 calories, 14.8 g of carbohydrates, 0.9 g of proteins, and 0.6 g of dietary fiber. Although it has a slightly higher calorific value compared to other teas, hibiscus provides functional properties and many essential nutrients to health.
Flavonoids - such as anthocyanins and quercetin - are responsible for most of the benefits of hibiscus tea, but flowers are also sources of vitamins, minerals, carbohydrates, and proteins.
Main nutrients of hibiscus tea:
• Minerals: iron, magnesium, potassium, phosphorus, copper, and calcium;
• Vitamins: A, C, thiamine (B1), riboflavin (B2) and folic acid;
• Organic Acids: between 15 and 30% of the hibiscus tea consists of substances such as malic, tartaric and citric acids, three types of phytonutrients that serve to strengthen the immune system and improve skin health.
Hibiscus tea contains no cholesterol and is not a source of caffeine.
Due to its nutritional properties, it is possible to recognize several advantages in the consumption of this tea:
• Enhancement of the immune system, due to high vitamin C content;
• Strengthening of the liver, nails, skin, and hair, by the presence of vitamin B1;
• Reduction of fluid retention, one of its main properties, which is due to the presence of quercetin;
• Effects on blood glucose and cholesterol reduction, due to polyphenols;
• Laxative action;
• Protective action of the cardiovascular system, by the presence of flavonoids and anthocyanins;
• Decreased blood pressure, protecting the body against possible blood vessel damage - may be helpful for people with high blood pressure;
• Decreased cholesterol by the presence of flavonoids and anthocyanins;
• Anti-inflammatory action, due to the presence of quercetin, polyphenols, and anthocyanins.
How To Prepare Hibiscus Tea
Put 1 liter of water to boil and watch for the first air bubbles to appear. At this point, the water is approximately 70 °C.
Wait for a few more seconds to the bubbles increase (ca. 80 °C if you have a kitchen thermometer) and then turn off the water. Add two tablespoons of the dried hibiscus, cover with a lid and let it infuse for 5 to 10 minutes.
You can enjoy the tea warm or cold (keep it covered in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours without losing the properties).
It is recommended not to overdo the consumption of this tea since it can cause excessive elimination of essential electrolytes - like sodium and potassium - due to its diuretic action.
Hibiscus tea is contraindicated for pregnant women and women who wish to become pregnant, as it can cause hormonal changes and miscarriage.
The flower is also contraindicated for people who have low blood pressure. It is always recommended to consult a health professional, as only they will be able to indicate the ideal amount of hibiscus that you can consume in a beneficial way for your body.
Infuse your world with red flowers tasty teas and sip to a happy life and good health.