As summer continues to heat up, staying cool and comfortable may be a challenge. In the Ayurvedic healing tradition, summer is considered to be pitta season. When pitta dosha falls out of balance, individuals may find themselves feeling overheated and irritable, or struggling with indigestion and inflammation.
Turning up the A/C and enjoying frozen treats may provide temporary relief, but there is a better way to cool your body from the inside out this summer: by sipping refreshing, calming and cooling herbal teas.
Below, learn about delicious herbs traditionally used to beat the heat and bring the body back into balance during summer. All of these herbal teas taste wonderful on ice!
1. Mint Tea
Herbs in the Mentha genus of plants are well known for their cooling properties, from peppermint to spearmint.* This is due to mint’s high concentration of menthol, which activates the body’s cold receptors to produce a cooling sensation. Mint tea is a staple in the Middle East, where it is sipped both hot and cold year-round.
2. Hibiscus Tea
Hibiscus is found in hot tropical climates around the world, including Africa, Central and South America, Mexico and the Caribbean. Hibiscus tea was first cultivated in northern and western Africa, and is said to have been used by the Pharaohs of Ancient Egypt to cool off in the desert heat. Ruby-hued hibiscus tea has a tangy, refreshing flavor and a high concentration of vitamin C and antioxidants, which may help to reduce inflammation.*
3. Raspberry Leaf Tea
In Ayurvedic medicine, raspberry leaf is considered to have sweet, cold and astringent properties and is used to balance the fiery pitta dosha.* Herbalists have used raspberry leaf tea to support women’s wellness and soothe digestive issues for centuries.* Steep a cup of this herbal tea on a hot day and allow yourself to relax and unwind.
4. Chamomile Tea
Chamomile has a well-established reputation as a calming, soothing herb.* This is because it contains a special antioxidant called apigenin, which has been studied for its ability to relax the body, soothe skin inflammation and gently induce sleep.* Sipping chamomile tea on a hot summer day or night may help to soothe the mind, body and spirit.* Adding chamomile tea bags to your bath is a nice way to relax before bed and reduce tossing and turning at night.*
5. Rose Tea
Astringent herbs like rose are believed to offset the effects of heat and humidity by keeping the body cool and dry.* The fragrant aroma and floral taste of rose tea can be soothing to the mind, spirit and body on a scorching hot summer day.* Add steeped, cooled rose tea and a few drops of vitamin E oil to a spray bottle for a DIY hydrating rose facial mist.