By: Wendy Wu, R.D., M.S.
As registered dietitians, we have to be very careful about nutritional advice we give our clients. Information we say should be evidence based or backed up by strong scientific studies. When it comes to teas and herbs however, I tend to be more flexible. My take on herbs and tea is that they’re natural. Like fruits and vegetables. Although benefits of some tea and herbs are not backed up by scientific studies, it doesn’t mean that their healing powers should be considered quackery. It took scientists over a decade to document the many benefits of green tea. So why not get a head start and take advantage of the claimed “benefits” of other less documented tea and herbs. You never know, in a few years, the evidence just might show up!
The Tonic Herbal Tea: Five Flower Tea (Ng Fah Cha)
Ingredients: honeysuckle, chrysanthemum flower, silk cotton, Plumeria rubra and Pueraria lobata.
Claimed Benefits: anti-inflammatory, which helps to alleviate symptoms like fatigue, sore throat, indigestion, poor appetite, insomnia and urinary difficulty. Helps to clear acne and eczema.
You can purchase ready made five flower tea at Chinese supermarkets and restaurants but they’re usually loaded with sugar.
So I decided to brew my own pot…
Please keep in mind: Speak with your doctor, dietitian or pharmacist about food-medication interactions with herbs and tea.