Rosemary – My Favorite Herbal Tea

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Jan 212013

I started growing herbs in my small garden because they are a group of plants that deer and rabbits hate. My yard, unfortunately, is a favorite gathering place for wild critters. But, as the saying goes, every dark cloud has a silver lining.

As I mentioned in my last post, A Heart Healthy Diet, the people of the Greek island Ikaria drink herbal teas made of wild herbs like marjoram, mint, rosemary and sage. It is one of the many healthy culinary habits of these people that remain healthy and vibrant through their 80’s and 90’s, and some well into their 100’s.

One of my favorite flavors is rosemary tea.

Rosemary is also an easy plant to grow in almost any garden. It is also easy to propagate from cuttings. Simply cut a 6 to 8″ stem, and remove the leaves from the bottom 2 inches. Stick the stem in a pot of soil and water occasionally. After 8 weeks, transplant the seedling into the ground in your garden and watch it mature into a beautiful rosemary plant.

I have successfully grown it in hardiness zone 6 in the US, so I have no doubt that it would thrive in warmer climates. Once you have several plants growing, you can enjoy rosemary tea year round – even in colder climates like Ohio.

Current research does not suggest that rosemary can reduce risks of dementia or Alzheimer’s as one of this herbs health benefits. However, these are two brain diseases that the people of Ikaria appear to avoid.

Dr. Prinna on his website page titled Rosemary, the Herb, Makes You Think Faster summarizes research that shows the affects of compound in rosemary that may help with cognitive abilities. Wholefoods also states that research has shown that rosemary increases blood flow to our brains, which can help with cognitive abilities and concentration.

You can enjoy rosemary either as a stand-alone tea or blend it with other teas.

As a rosemary stand-alone tea, simply steep a sprig of rosemary in hot water for 5 to 10 minutes. The longer you steep the sprig, the stronger the tea will become. You can add a sweetener or not. Either way, it is a delicious tea with a wonderful rosemary aroma.

I also like to blend the rosemary flavor with green tea. I first steep the rosemary for about 8 minutes. I then pout the rosemary tea into a cup with a green tea bag. I then steep the green tea bag for 3 minutes. The blended tea is then ready to enjoy. You can add a sweetener if you prefer.

Feel free to experiment and try other blended options with rosemary. Start your own herbal garden, and make drinking natural herbal teas a daily habit. Then start sharing in the good health of the Ikaria people.