The birds and the bees are singing in the trees, flowers are blooming, and allergies are attacking. We haven’t turned on our A.C. yet, but tree pollen will soon force us to close the windows for a time, at least until the shower of golden dust ceases.
In addition, I’m going to be house-sitting for my parents, who have two cats that get me sneezy and itchy. I take the generic version of Claritin, but would love to avoid pills. And so, I end up intrigued with claims of using rooibos, or red tea, to treat allergies.
In case you are unfamiliar with the herb, it comes from South Africa, and is processed in a manner similar to tea. It is naturally caffeine free and high in antioxidants. Folks in South Africa have been drinking it for centuries, but it’s only now becoming very popular here in the States. Like tea, companies make many claims about rooibos’ health benefits. Is there any truth?
Anecdotally, peoples in Africa and Asia have been using rooibos as a healing herb for ages. And it may have some healing properties, thanks to its high levels of antioxidants, which may exceed those of green tea. “Allergies: An Amazing Discovery,” written in 1970 by South African mother Annique Theron, tells of the health properties of rooibos investigated by Theron. On the other hand, Dr. Ray Sahelian, who spends his time evaluating natural supplements, has not found a great deal of research to support claims such as rooibos relieving allergies.
The jury may be out on rooibos as a miracle treatment, but you might want to try it any way. It makes a great caffeine-free substitute for tea, and it takes to blends well. We use peach rooibos for our any-time-of-the-day iced tea. Who knows if it helps our allergies, but it sure is refreshing.
Make sure to stop by Stephanie’s blog, The Tea Scoop!
Disclaimer: This is not intended as medical advice. Please consult your physician for your particular needs.
[Editor’s note: Our blog is chock full of great articles on this topic. Use our search feature to find them!]
© Online Stores, Inc., and The English Tea Store Blog, 2009-2014. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this article’s author and/or the blog’s owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Online Stores, Inc., and The English Tea Store Blog with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.