There are few things better than sitting outside with a nice cold beverage during a hot and sultry summer afternoon. Taking the time to pause and refresh yourself isn't just good for the body, but for the mind and spirit as well. Instead of going for the more traditional high sugar iced tea or lemonade, why not choose a cooling drink that has additional health benefits?
Hibiscus has a strongly cooling and refreshing nature. It's also a great anti-inflammatory, and shows promise in reducing high blood pressure and high cholesterol*. And it's delicious! Here's a recipe that will make you think twice before you choose that next sweet tea.
- 1 cup Hibiscus Flowers
- 4 cups Water
- 2 cups Ice
- Optional: 1/4 cup honey
- Boil 4 cups of water and remove from heat
- Add 1 cup of hibiscus flowers, stir, and cover
- Steep for 15-20 minutes
- Strain, then add honey if desired
- Cool for 30 minutes, then add ice
- Add mint leaves or orange slices for added taste and color
As always, be sure to talk to your health practitioner when adding a new herbal remedy into your daily regiment.
*Hopkins, AL et al. (2013). Hibiscus sabdariffa L. in the treatment of hypertension and hyperlipidemia: a comprehensive review of animal and human studies. Fitoterapia,85, 84-94.
*This post was originally published for the Kaplan Center for Health and Wellness*