Many of us experience a moment in time when something in our body just doesn’t feel right. Maybe, you don’t have the energy that you usually do. Maybe, you are starting to feel congested, chilled and have a mild headache. When the seasons or temperature changes I feel like my head is foggy, I feel sluggish, and achey. Symptoms vary when you start to feel like your immune system is being attacked by foreign invaders, and that is when you have to up the antics and fight back. Don’t let those germs take over and show them who is boss, but instead of reaching for that cold fighting medication in your cabinet grab yourself pure natural ingredients. There is so much that we can consume that are filled with antioxidants, anti-flammatory properties and goodness we need to build up our immunity and take over the invaders. Many of the ingredients listed below may be new to you, but I assure that they can readily be found in your local grocery stores or health food stores. This tea is truly my go to whenever I feel like I need a boost and I sip a cup a few times a day and enjoy with other natural remedies. This tea will aid in boosting your immunity, reducing inflammation and providing anti-oxidants along with providing anti-viral and anti-bacterial properties.
Let’s talk about the ingredients quickly before we jump to the tea recipe which is super easy.
Turmeric: Definitely one of my favourite super foods to add to teas, soups, salads, well just about anything. Raw which is the orange coloured “finger” that you see in the picture above is the best to be used in this tea. You can find the powdered form more readily, but for the purposes of this tea the raw form is best. This root has been used for a long time for its antiseptic and antiviral properties, as well as aiding with digestive issues. It also boosts anti-oxidant levels and provides an excellent source of iron, vitamin B6, manganese and potassium.
Ginger: Many of us are familiar with this root in its raw form and it is also available as a powdered form. For this recipe, it is best to use the raw form which adds flavour and a mild spice addition to the tea. This brown skinned, yellow fleshed root provides compounds that act as anti-oxidants and has anti-inflammatory properties. One of the compounds shogaols has been noted to provide a strong anti-infammatory effect. The other compound 6-gingerol, functions as the antioxidant and anti-inflammatory agent.
Chaga: This may be new to many and is a mushroom that is not your typical mushroom but it is a chunky mass that is hard, black/brown and is found on leafy trees, especially birch. In the picture above you can see it in the bottom right corner. Chaga has been used for centuries and has many beneficial properties especially being a powerful anti-oxidant. Anti-oxidants are so important because they protect our bodies from over exposure to free radicals that cause the break down of our cells and lead to chronic fatigue, pain, illness and cancer. Betulin is an abundant triterpenes found in chaga that provides anti-bacterial, anti-viral, anti-inflammatory, and anti-oxidant properties which means that it can aid in whatever maybe attacking your immune system.
Echinacea: This dried herb is one that provides support for immune function, and studies have shown that it may stop a cold consumed at first symptoms, and may shorten the duration. Be aware that if you have allergies or sensitivities to ragweed, mums or daisies that you avoid putting this in your tea. I add this just as an added bonus but is optional.
Honey: Honey comes in many forms but it is preferred that you use one that comes from bee keepers that are reliable and is in the raw and unpasteurized form. I prefer to use honey as a sweetener because it will include various nutrients and provides some beneficial enzymes and minerals. You can omit this in the recipe or add the sweetener of your choice.
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Immune Boost Tea
8 cups water
1 medium chunk of Chaga mushroom
1 2″ piece of raw ginger peeled and roughly chopped
3 pieces of raw turmeric ( peeled and roughly chopped)
2 tsp loose dried echinacea herbs (optional) (add to tea ball for steeping)
1 tsp raw unpasteurized honey (optional)
1. In a medium sauce pan add the water, ginger, turmeric, and echinacea and bring to a boil.
2. Reduce to a simmer at lowest heat for minimum one hour. The longer the ingredients are steeped the better, especially the chaga. Some of the water may evaporate so it is important to keep an eye on the tea and add some water to the pot if the level decreases.
3. The colour of the tea should be a deep brown colour after a number of hours, strain the tea and pour into another pot or bowl using a sieve to collect the pieces.
4. The tea is ready to consume, add honey if desired to one cup of tea.
Note: The chaga mushroom piece can be saved in the freezer and reused again for another batch of tea.
Sip on one cup of tea at least 3 times a day to get all the amazing benefits.