What is one simple way to increase your daily intake of vitamins & minerals? Drink herbal infusions daily! Herbal infusions are both inexpensive and easy to make. In our home, my 17 year old daughter and I both enjoy a blend that I call Nourish the Goddess. Our tea has equal parts of the following herbs: nettles, red clover, red raspberry and oatstraw. I also add generous amounts of red clover blossoms. I love this blend of nutrient dense herbs because it balances the major organ systems in the body while offering easily assimilated nutritional benefits.
All green plants are high in chlorophyll, which has a molecular structure that is absolutely identical to hemoglobin except for the center atom. In hemoglobin this molecule is iron, whereas in chlorophyll it is magnesium. This means that when ingested, chlorophyll actually helps to do the job of hemoglobin, helping to rebuild and replenish our red blood cells, boosting our energy and increasing our wellbeing. What goddess doesn’t need a little help in the blood building department?
Nettles contain abundant chlorophyll, calcium, chromium, magnesium, zinc and generous stores of iron, manganese, niacin, phosphorus, potassium, protein, riboflavin, selenium, silicon, thiamine, vitamins A, C & K. Wow! Nettles are well known to restore adrenal functioning and give relief from symptoms of hay fever. They are an excellent tonic for the kidneys. Regular use of nettles helps maintain even blood sugar levels and increase energy. They provide optimum support for goddesses in all phases of life and are especially beneficial for growing girls, the teen years, pregnant women, nursing mothers & menopause.
Red clover has been used for centuries to nourish hormones and it is unsurpassed as a fertility herb. It contains B vitamins, vitamin C, calcium, chromium, magnesium, manganese, niacin, phosphorus, potassium and protein. While red clover can help regulate the menstrual cycle, it is best avoided by women with heavy bleeding as it has a mild blood-thinning effect. The blood thinning ability is one of the reasons red clover has a reputation for preventing stroke. Red clover is a fantastic ally for nursing mothers, replenishing minerals lost during pregnancy and lactation. The National Cancer Institute has found antitumor properties in red clover. All that and pretty to boot? Treat yourself to some whole red clover blossoms for your tea in addition to the cut and sifted and you will see what I’m talking about!
I doubt there are many pregnant women who haven’t heard of red raspberry tea – it is relied upon by wise women all around the globe. Red raspberry supports healthy and efficient functioning of our beloved wombs, toning the uterus in preparation for birth. Drinking red raspberry leaf tea regularly during pregnancy – especially during the last trimester – helps prepare for an easy, uncomplicated delivery. These leaves are loaded with calcium, iron, magnesium, manganese, niacin, selenium, phosphorus, and potassium as well as vitamins B, C, A and E. The high calcium content helps to nourish the nervous system and relieve pain. It also helps to strengthen bones, hair, teeth & nails. Red raspberry leaves are tonifying to the entire pelvic area, including the ovaries, because of their high content of fragrine. It’s astringent qualities make it useful for goddesses who have excessive menstrual bleeding. Make infusion of red raspberry tea with honey and freeze into ice cubes for labor.
A nourishing tonic for the nervous system par excellence, oatstraw is revitalizing, rejuvenating and restorative. While oats are the seeds of the plant, oatstraw is the flowering herb and stalk, and milky oak tops are just the flowering herb. Oatstraw offers the most magnesium of any plant! They also contain chromium, sodium, silicon, calcium, iron, niacin, phosphorus, potassium, riboflavin, selenium and protein. In the vitamin department we’ve got the B’s and folic acid, as well as vitamins E, K, A & C. All of these available minerals help with bones, hair, teeth and nails. This herb is unsurpassed support for pregnant and nursing mamas, babies and growing children. Whole plant forms of calcium made into an herbal infusion are absorbed easily by the body.
There is one more ingredient I will usually add to our tea, and that is dried goji berries. They are rich in antioxidants, particularly carotenoids such as beta carotene and zeaxanthin, which are helpful in protecting the retina of the eye and improving eyesight. They also protect the liver and kidneys, and the polysaccharides in goji berries works wonders with the pituitary gland by stimulating it to release HGH, the Human Growth Hormone. Just a few of the effects of HGH in the body include increased calcium retention, strengthening and increasing the mineralization of bone and increased protein synthesis. HGH can even reverse the effects of aging, making us look and feel younger. Goji berries also have a high ORAC value which is extremely important in preventing oxidation and in preserving the cells thereby preventing aging. Goji’s for glorious goddessness at any age!
To make your own Nourish the Goddess tea, buy bulk herbs (I love Mountain Rose Herbs) and mix equal parts nettles, red clover, red raspberry and oatstraw together. Add a generous amount of red clover blossoms. This is optional and simply a personal preference – the blossoms are just such a pretty addition to the brew. Store in a glass jar.
To brew your infusion, put 1-2 heaping tablespoons Nourish the Goddess tea to a quart jar. Add a small handful of goji berries. Fill the kettle with pure water and bring to a boil. Pour boiled over your herbs and put the lid on the jar. Let steep 4-8 hours. The more herbs you use and the longer it steeps, the stronger the brew. I will usually make our tea before I go to bed to insure a nice strong infusion. When your tea has steeped to your liking, strain the herbs and add these to your compost. Voila! You now have a quart of liquid sunshine, just loaded with vitamins & minerals to nourish your goddess! You can drink this room temp or put it in the fridge and enjoy it cold. If you decide to heat it up do not use the microwave, just heat gently on the stove. The tea will last a couple of days in your fridge. You can sweeten it if you like but I find the goji’s add just the right amount of subtle sweetness for me. If you need it sweeter but don’t want to add suger consider adding liquid stevia – SweetLeaf brand makes flavors such as apricot or peppermint.
I’d love to know what herbal infusions and teas are your favorite(s) and why?