Is tea good for you? Any avid tea drinker will be quick to assure you of its benefits, from the soothing pleasure of a hot drink to green tea’s antioxidant properties.
There are many different kinds of teas but are they all healthy? Can you steep other plant-based products — like kratom — into a tasty and beneficial tea drink? Let’s take a closer look.
What Is Kratom?
- Kratom is the common name for the plant Mytragyna speciosa from Southeast Asia. It falls in the larger family, Rubiaceae, which also includes coffee plants.
- Kratom is known to be a calming pain reliever and, to a lesser extent, viable for its stimulant effects and potential to mitigate opioid abuse.
- It’s effective because kratom’s natural chemical makeup is similar to those of the opium poppy (from which all opiates sprung), and it interacts similarly with our bodies’ opioid receptors.
- While addictive properties are a risk and recreational use is possible, kratom isn’t an opiate. It is less addictive than several opioids, creates a less powerful psychoactive response, and isn’t chemically close enough to trigger a positive drug test.
You can purchase kratom supplements online as loose powders or easy-to-take capsules.
Types of Kratom
There is only one kratom plant, but different strains better act as sedatives or stimulants. One relieves, and the other invigorates. At Organa, we offer a variety of strains (such as white vein, red vein, and green vein) organized by their effects:
- To energize
- To unwind
- To find a balance between the two
The Benefits of Kratom
As we mentioned, kratom promotes pain relief and, often, a somewhat elevated mood or sense of euphoria. Depending on the strain and dosage (more on that in just a moment), you can also achieve secondary benefits.
- Energizing kratom acts as a stimulant. It can help you find the pep in your step, mental clarity, and alertness, much like a cup of coffee.
- Sedating kratom can help your mind and body relax, and its analgesic properties are excellent. It may be useful to help unwind before bed to help support restful sleep.
More balanced varieties offer more stimulation in lower amounts and more sedation with larger amounts (which is also relatively true of any variety). If you strike in the middle, this kratom can help you stay focused and calm. It’s good for stress relief and a general feeling of wellness.
What Is Tea?
We should all be familiar with tea, but how much do we really know about it?
Tea comes from a plant called Camellia sinensis, which grows across East Asia. The two popular sub-varieties are Camellia sinensis and Camellia sinensis assamica, but there are also plenty of other selectively bred varieties. You can brew it into a hot or cold drink, and the flavors and aroma range from light and floral to bitter and robust.
Types of Teas
In a manner somewhat similar to kratom, you can prepare the tea plant in multiple ways, resulting in either white, green, oolong, or black tea.
- White tea is made from delicate buds and is not oxidized or heated.
- Green, oolong, and black teas are made from full-fledged tea leaves and processed to different degrees.
- Green tea is lightly oxidized (barely exposed to air) and then steamed. Black tea is dried and fermented until it is dark and intensely flavored. Oolong is partially oxidized, falling somewhere between green and black tea.
Herbal tea is crafted from different plants or flowers like chamomile or rooibos or fruits, spices, and herbs. Most herbal teas are naturally caffeine-free (unlike traditional teas, which all have some caffeine content).
The Benefits of Tea
There are a few uses and benefits almost all tea has in common.
For example, a warm cup of tea offers sore throat relief. (Sometimes home remedies for sore throat skip the actual tea altogether and add together hot water, lemon, and honey.)
And they all contain beneficial organic compounds called polyphenols — flavonoids and catechins are the ones of interest. These antioxidants fight free radicals, and studies suggest that they:
- Help lower your risk of cardiovascular events.
- May offer a reduced risk of Type II diabetes.
- The compounds found in green tea may help lower blood pressure and cholesterol and offer limited anticancer properties.
Green tea is less processed and thus retains the most organic compounds. White tea benefits from this even more so, although it has been less extensively studied.
Is black tea or oolong good for you, as they are more processed types of tea? Definitely — the benefits of black tea and oolong do include that boost to antioxidants and cardiovascular health!
Why Kratom Tea?
So finally, can you steep kratom into a tea? Absolutely; although just like herbal, it isn’t a “true” tea. Some benefits of kratom tea include:
- Kratom has a strong bitter taste. Tea means you don’t have to toss that back and quickly wash it down or swallow a pill. You can enjoy a warm, sweetened drink instead.
- Kratom Tea has medicinal purposes. You can consider it among the remedies for sore throats with extra added pain relief. Studies also suggest it can function as a cough suppressant, which would make it one of the best natural medicines for sore throat and cough.
How to Steep the Best Cup of Kratom Tea
You’ll get the best results on a stovetop, where you can let the water and kratom simmer together after combining. This helps the powder dissolve, making your drink much more palatable).
- Use hot, not boiling water. Only black tea benefits from very hot water. Slightly cooled water is best for green and oolong for taste reasons. For kratom, hot water prevents stripping any of the potency.
- You can use any amount of water with your kratom dose as long as you drink it all. More water further dilutes bitterness.
- Add lemon (or lime) — aside from the zest, it preserves alkaloid potency. For sore throat remedies, it helps break up mucus.
- Stir in your kratom powder. Although you can strain it or use a tea infuser, you’ll get the most out of your kratom by ingesting it, powder remnants, and all. To combat clumps, try sifting first or even mixing with a matcha whisk.
- Steep longer than tea: 10 to 15 minutes. If you’re heating in a saucepan, this is where you let the mixture simmer.
- Add sweetener as desired. Honey is good to soothe a sore throat, or you can infuse traditional tea into your kratom concoction to combine the benefits of both!
So, the next time you think you might need some sore throat medicine at bedtime, pause for a second. Instead of overwhelming drowsiness, maybe you can gently fall into a peaceful sleep.
When you’re reaching for that midday cup of coffee to power through, pause for a second. Instead of a caffeine overload, maybe you can get the energy but skip the jittery anxiety.
It might be the perfect time to whip up a cup of kratom tea.