Three Reasons Why You Should Only Drink Organic Herbal Tea
Karina Francois, Naturopath
Herbal tea has been consumed for thousands of years due to its health benefits, by ancient civilisations right through to modern-day society. Herbal teas have quickly become a popular healthy alternative to caffeinated drinks, sugary juices and soft drinks. But while many may believe that drinking large amounts of herbal teas will ‘cleanse’ their bodies, this is only a half-truth. There is a hidden side to the commercial tea industry that producers try to avoid: pesticides.
Pesticides have been widely documented for their negative effects on the environment, as well as human health. Let me explain to you in three reasons why you should switch to organic herbal tea.
1. ITS THE ORIGINAL FORM OF VITAMIN WATER
Organic tea farms use compost, plants and organic matter to provide essential ground cover and fill the soil with nutrients to allow sustainable, fertile land for many harvests to come. This natural soil brings the organic tea plants to life; rich with minerals, amino acids and vitamins. Organic herbal tea is literally the world’s healthiest vitamin water, with varieties such as green tea, chamomile and yerba mate containing antioxidants that can help reduce inflammation, combat cell damage and have been linked to reducing the risk of cancer and diabetes.
It’s a scary thought that something you’re consuming for health benefits could actually be filling your body with harmful toxins, but that’s exactly what non-organic herbal tea can do. Commercial crops can also pass harmful chemicals into crop soil, reducing plantation sustainability and infecting native wildlife. A study published in The World Journal of Agricultural Sciences compared soil from conventional and organic tea farms in West Bengal, India, and concluded that the toxic residues caused by pesticides in commercial farming greatly impacted soil quality.
If pesticides are having such a negative impact on the soil, just imagine what they’re doing to our bodies when we consume them. These toxins detract from the healing and cleansing properties tea has been used for throughout history, with human pesticide consumption linked to short-term health issues such as headaches and nausea, and in some cases to more serious conditions of infertility, endocrine disruptions and even cancer. The only way to ensure you’re not exposing yourself to harmful chemicals and the health risks associated with them is to stick to certified organic tea.
3.PROTECT OURSELVES AND OUR ENVIRONMENT
The Soil Association, an international organic advocate, outlines the benefits of organic farming for local wildlife. These benefits include providing a safe haven for species such as bees, butterflies and birds, with 50 per cent more pollinators on organic farms than conventional farms. Organic farms are also shown to have 75 per cent more plant species, which contribute to a cleaner, more vibrant ecosystem.
So what’s the answer? Make sure you’re only drinking certified organic herbal tea. Switching to organic will allow the nutrients of tea to enter your body unaltered, without the side-effects of pesticides working against its cleansing properties.