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Health Benefits of Honeybush Tea

Kulbhushaan Raghuvanshi
Commonly found in the jungles of South Africa, the Cyclopia or Honeybush plant is known the world over for its nutritional benefits. In recent times, various health experts have documented its benefits and mentioned honeybush as one of the healthiest alternatives to regular tea.

Did You Know?

According to an article published in the 'Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry', the honeybush plant contains no caffeine, and hence does not cause caffeine-related problems.
Classified as a herbal plant indigenous to South Africa, Honeybush is also known as Bossiestee, Bergtee, Heuningtee, Boertee, and Bushtea by the locals. The plant is found in the coastal areas of the Western and Eastern Cape Provinces. It usually grows in the wild, and at present almost 23 to 24 honeybush species can be found.
From these species, only the following are harvested extensively for commercial uses - Cyclopia subternata, Cyclopia sessiliflora, Cyclopia maculata, Cyclopia intermedia, and Cyclopia genistoides.
The leaves, stem, and flowers of the honeybush plant act as important ingredients in the tea-making process. The plant is easily recognized with its trifoliolate leaves, and sweetly scented bright yellow flowers. The shape of the leaves differ according to species, but are mostly needle-like thin.
The tea is usually harvested during the flowering season - from September to October for the mountain and valley species, and from May to June for the coastal species.
Take a bag of honeybush tea and place it in a cup of hot water for 1 to 2 minutes. The longer you put the bag in the water, the more flavors it will release. Honey, milk, and sugar can be added to enhance the taste, but many prefer honeybush tea without any extra ingredients.

Honeybush Tea Health Benefits

Honeybush tea is completely pure and natural, and contains no additives, flavor agents, preservatives, or coloring agents.
Honeybush is extremely beneficial for women's health. It helps in regulating the menstrual cycle, and lowers the risk of osteoporosis and cancers of the breast and uterus.
The tea has been highly recommended for those suffering from cold and allergies. Honeybush's antibacterial properties keep a range of unhealthy bacteria at bay, and prepares the body to fight off future infections. It also helps in calming down the effects caused by severe cold and cough.
Several health experts recommend honeybush to those suffering from asthma and chest congestion, as the nutrients of honeybush cause the phlegm to be expelled from the body.
The US National Institutes of Health states that honeybush tea is a rich source of antioxidants, and helps in eliminating free radicals - that destabilize DNA, and lead to various health conditions such as cancer and heart issues - from the body.
A cup of honeybush tea is known to provide the body with calcium, iron, copper, magnesium, manganese, zinc, potassium, and vitamin C.
Health experts also believe that drinking honeybush tea helps in effective weight loss, and treats various indigestion problems such as bloating and constipation.
Honeybush tea is also an anti-spasmodic, and is extremely helpful for people suffering from stomach cramps. Its anti-spasmodic properties can prove extremely helpful for stomach ulcers and heartburn.
In an experiment, South African scientists applied honeybush extracts to the skins of animals, and then introduced a tumor-inducing agent. They published their research in the June 2005 issue of 'Cancer Letters', where it was reported that applying honeybush extracts achieved a tumor prevention rate of almost 90%.
Due to its pleasant sweet taste, honeybush tea is a popular choice for people who need to keep their sugar in control.
Due to the recent surge in its popularity, many brands of honeybush tea can be found in local health food stores or can be ordered online. Make sure that you buy honeybush tea from a reputed source to reap all the benefits of this herbal tea.
Note: Pregnant women and those on medication are advised to consult a physician before introducing honeybush tea in their diet.
Disclaimer: The information provided in this story is solely for educating the reader. It is not intended to be a substitute for the advice of a medical expert.