As winter approaches I find myself constantly preparing different types of warming beverages to sip on throughout the day. Waking up to an energizing cup of hot water with lemon and settling down in the evening with a soothing mug of herbal tea has been part of my winter routine for years.
These beverages also have many nutritional properties such as aiding in digestion, lowering inflammation, and providing beneficial antioxidants!
My Favorite Types of Tea
- Green tea has been used for medicinal purposes in China and Japan for thousands of years. It has been boasted for its powerful antioxidant content (100x more than vitamin C!), along with its ability to reduce inflammation, lower LDL (“bad”) cholesterol, and boost metabolism. Caffeine content ranges from 30-50 mg per 8oz (compared to 95 mg for coffee).
- Tulsi tea is a more bitter type of tea that enhances liver detoxification and can help prevent cancer by inducing cell death in precancerous and cancerous cells. It is most well know for its natural adaptogenic properties, or its ability to help the body adapt to stress, making it a perfect beverage during the stressful winter holidays!
- Hibiscus tea has been shown to decrease both systolic and diastolic blood pressure by an average of 7.58 mmHg and 3.53 mmHg, respectively (according to a 2015 review of 5 studies).
*I prefer to buy organic, loose-leaf tea – it is cleaner, cheaper, and has less packaging so it’s better for the environment!
Hot Water With Lemon
The benefits of water with lemon should not be underestimated. Drinking a warm cup first thing in the morning on an empty stomach has been part of my routine for years! Below is a list of some of its wonderful benefits.
- It can help improve digestion by increasing production of hydrochloric acid (HCl) in your stomach, which further helps to increase important digestive enzymes.
- An increase in acid and digestive enzymes can lead to more regular bowel movements (at least 1 per day is optimal).
- It can be a natural remedy for acid reflux. This may sound counter-intuitive, but many people with heartburn are actually under-producing acid! When you increase your digestive secretions you may notice a decrease in your symptoms.
- Aids in detoxification of of anything potentially harmful or toxic (such as pesticides, alcohol, caffeine, prescription drugs, and chemicals from personal care products) by increasing the livers detoxification processes.
*Be sure to drink a cup of plain water after to rinse your teeth of the acidity
Healthy Hot Cocoa
An obvious fan favorite during the winter. However, with all the sweets floating around this time of year, sometimes I want that amazing chocolaty flavor without all the added sugar. Many commercial hot cocoa mixes also contain artificial flavors, caramel coloring, artificial sweeteners and trans fat. This recipe eliminates those toxic ingredients, replacing them with healthy fats and antioxidants.
- 1 cup boiling water or warmed nut milk
- 1 heaped Tbs cacao powder
- 1-2 tsp MCT (medium chain triglyceride) oil or (my favorite) coconut butter
- 1/2 tsp monk fruit extract or natural sweetener of choice (I prefer local honey)
- Dash of cinnamon
- Optional: 1 tsp Ashwaganda
- Optional: 1 tsp Lion’s Mane mushroom
- Blend until frothy and enjoy!
What are your favorite healthy winter beverages? Share below!