What is Echinacea tea? It’s an herbal supplement, a natural remedy, and a protective beverage every home needs.
We’re always looking to stay warm, cozy, and healthy during winter. Since this winter started, my family and I have been drinking Echinacea tea routinely. I can happily say that nobody in our house has even caught a cold.
When I started getting interested in this herb and its effects, I was skeptical about its benefits. However, I was stunned by how powerful this natural remedy is. Echinacea grows all over North America, and many people have it in their gardens but sadly don’t know about its special effects.
What Is Echinacea Tea?
Echinacea tea comes from the Echinacea genus of flowering plants. Growing in North America, they are also known as pale purple coneflowers or American coneflowers.
When I realized just how available this plant was, I was surprised that many people didn’t even know about it even though they lived in the United States.
The plant comes from the Asteraceae family, which includes daisies. Native Americans have been making Echinacea tea for many years and used it as a natural remedy for different problems. You can use three different subtypes of the Echinacea plant to make tea:
- Echinacea angustifolia
- Echinacea pallida
- Echinacea purpurea
These plants grow in the woods, large prairies, and open spaces. Echinacea purpurea is the most popular type when it comes to making tea. You can make it out of the purple flower after drying and cutting it into tiny pieces. I’ve also tried one out of leaves and Echinacea roots, and it’s equally good.
What’s the Flavor Profile?
Let’s be honest here – Echinacea tea isn’t at the top of my list when it comes to flavor. You may not like it either, especially if you prefer sweet and mild drinks. The good news is that it can be pretty nourishing with a few extra ingredients.
The taste is pretty strong with some floral and earthly notes. Some people also feel tingling in their tongues, but that is likely the result of the tea’s effects. Most people blend mint and lemongrass with this tea to get a smoother taste.
You can mix it with other ingredients or get a premade blend. Other elements that can mask the strong taste of Echinacea include cayenne, honey, and ginger. Many people also mix other herbs like linden, wild lettuce, yarrow, and goldenseal to boost the medical benefits.
Beneficial Effects of Echinacea Tea
The taste of this tea isn’t its primary strength but rather its health benefits. Let’s take a look at what it has to offer.
It May Prevent Cancer
Several studies indicate Echinacea can help prevent the growth of new cancer cells and potentially even destroy existing ones. One study on cytotoxic effects of Echinacea found that the chicoric acid in Echinacea plants could cause cancer cell death.
It Can Help With Skin Problems
Many people drink this tea to deal with various skin issues. In fact, that is why I’ve tried it in the first place, but I won’t talk about my personal experience so let’s see what the studies say.
One study on the potential use of Echinacea in acne found that it prevents Propionibacterium, one of the leading causes of acne. Numerous skin products with Echinacea extract also reduce wrinkles and promote hydration, as this compound can protect the skin and repair skin damage.
It Has Strong Anti-Inflammatory Effects
Echinacea helps with swelling, chronic pain, and inflammation. It can tamp down excess inflammation, make the pain bearable, and help your body heal. There is also some indication that Echinacea extract might help prevent memory loss due to inflammation.
It Strengthens the Immune System
This benefit is probably the best-known advantage of this tea. Many studies on Echinacea and immune function have proven that this herb is highly effective in helping the immune system fight off viruses and infections that cause different illnesses. This tea helps prevent the development of colds and shortens their duration.
How to Make Echinacea Tea
Most health food shops provide Echinacea tea bags, dried flowers, leaves, and roots. If you don’t have any of those stores nearby, you can also find all of these products online.
To make Echinacea tea, follow these steps:
- Put a single teaspoon of dried or two tablespoons of fresh Echinacea in a teacup.
- Boil water and pour it over the herb until the cup is full.
- Let it steep for around 15 minutes.
- Remove the herbs and enjoy.
If you don’t like the flavor, you can add other ingredients like ginger, honey, mint, lemongrass, or anything else that tickles your fancy to get a smoother taste.