Welcome to the AO Tea Bar! Organic Herbal & Medical Tea, Decoctions & Tisanes.
Tea blended remedies for health, nourishment and recuperation
Now in stock for most teas, I have handmade tea bags, at last!
When deciding upon these teas I felt inspired to bring to your attention the reason I created them. Herbs are profound, loaded with nutrients and abundant in medicinal properties for aspects of the body, mind and spirit even in mild tea form they can bring much relief from common ailments and minor conditions. Teas can sooth, protect and nourish, they are perfect for the convalescent patient, the elderly and children as well as being a refreshing alternative to coffee and black tea for those just seeking healthier beverages. I wished to combine some botanical blends that could help support total bodily systems as well as calming the mind. Each exclusive combination works specifically for it's individual cause whilst also giving a high level of nourishment to your over-all system. It has taken years for me to get to the point where I could feel educated and experienced enough to be able to produce my own herbal concoctions, I have done all of this whilst facing my own severe health challenges, it seemed pointless to have been through such development and learning not to pass on the knowledge that could possibly benefit others. I sincerely hope you enjoy the benefits of my experiences!
There is little more satisfying and enjoyable than the uplifting taste of a handcrafted, herbal tea. My exclusive herbal teas are freshly created and stored for a limited time to ensure the herbal essence remains. I buy small batches of the finest organic and fair trade herbs and store them in glass jars to preserve their natural nutrients and medicinal oils. Unlike finely cut conventional tea found in mass manufactured tea bags, my herbal tea is fresh, fragrant, tasty, longer lasting and far more economical and ecologically sound. You will certainly taste the difference.
When to Take Herbs: Generally, herbs are taken upon waking (at least one hour before breakfast) before or after meals, between meals, or before bed (at least two hours after dinner).
Take only one herb formula in one sitting, so that you can experience its effects in isolation. Do not over dose with too many at once, always keep a chart to monitor any reactions or improvements to your health. Herbal remedies are powerful medicines treat them with the utmost respect, treat your body with respect and allow the dosage to be introduced slowly to avoid too much too soon which can create reactions in seriously ill and hyper sensitive individuals. Be wise in your decisions for your health and never stop any medicines that you may be on without seeking your Doctor’s advice. Herbs can work in harmony and be an asset to any health regime you are undertaking, so go ahead be well and be wise.
If you've ever made a cup of tea, you've made an herbal infusion. It's just that simple!
Infusions are typically used when the herbs you are using are leaves and flowers of a plant. Sometimes seeds and roots will be used in an infusion when there are delicate essential oils that would be lost when boiled in a decoction.
If you use seeds in an infusion, you should lightly crush them, so that the water has more access to the constituents in the seed.
Fresh or dried herbs can be made using an infusion method. To prepare an infusion all you need to know is:
Use cold, filtered water.
Use approximately 1-2 teaspoons of dried herb per cup of water OR use 3 teaspoons of fresh herb per cup of water.
Bring your water to a boil and pour over your herbs.
Allow to steep for 10-20 minutes, covered.
Strain off the herbs and serve.
If you are wanting more of a medicinal infusion, you can use up to 1/2 ounce of dried herbs per cup of water and allow it to steep for 20+ minutes, up to several hours.
Infusions do not have a long shelf-life, so it is best to make them as needed, or they can be stored in the fridge for a day or two.
These delicious tea's serve to not only help restore your own personal health, but they are exceptionally good for the environment when added to compost pile or to your plants.....so do the earth goodness and spread your tea wisely!
Grab a teapot, a caffetiere or your tea making equipment of choice.
Scoop 1 -2 teaspoons of herbal tea leaves, roots, seeds or flowers for you and the same for each of your friends into a pot and add boiling water.
3 cup tea pot = 3 / 6 teaspoons of herbal tea.
Let the tea infuse for 15 minutes.
Simply pour the brewed tea into cups and serve.
Breathe, sip your tea and relax
Please compost respectfully, give back to Mother Nature as she has given freely to you.
Decoctions are preferred for harder herbs like roots, barks, and seeds. It is helpful to grind or crush your whole roots, barks, and seeds up some before brewing your decoction, but it is not required. I actually have a coffee grinder that I reserve specifically for herbs, so I will pulse my herbs in there first before starting the decoction.
You can also purchase roots, barks, and seeds already ground, but they will have a shorter shelf-life than the whole herb.
To make a decoction, you just need the following steps:
Use cold, filtered water.
Use approximately 1/4 ounce of dried herb per cup of water. I usually make mine by the quart, so you need roughly 1 ounce of herb per quart of water.
Bring your water to a boil and add the herbs.
Reduce the heat as low as possible and cover (keep covered tightly as many constituents like essential oils are lost through evaporation).
Simmer for 20 minutes if you're using small pieces of the herb, but if you're using bigger chunks of roots, bark, or seeds, then you can simmer for up to an hour.
Remove from heat and strain off the herbs and serve. If you like, you can also leave them to steep even longer, up to overnight.
The following is such a cleanse based on my research in this area over the last few years. However, I highly recommend printing this out and consulting your doctor first as any cleanse (no matter how natural) maycatalyze certain health conditions.
Step 1: Reduce Your Exposure to Toxins
This is probably the hardest step because you can’t possibly control every toxin you come in contact with (unless you want to live in a plastic bubble for a month). Try to plan for your cleanse, though. For instance, limit unnecessary downtown travels and walk the back streets rather than the main so you can avoid as many exhaust fumes as possible. If you have access to a swimming pool, choose other exercise during your cleanse to avoid chlorine.
Here is a fairly complete list:
· Wean out stimulants (alcohol, cigarette smoke and white sugar) – try to cut out coffee but if you can’t, drink organic.
· Eat organic foods when possible – wash thoroughly to remove pesticides & contaminants (use soap or hydrogen peroxide).
· Eat all natural foods– come on, you can resist junk food for one month. No chips, pop, deep-fried foods (basically any take out) – check all ingredients and if you can’t pronounce it, it ain’t natural.
· Reduce red meat intake(its bi-product is poisonous ammonia) to one palm-sized serving once a week – try lamb.
· Drink distilled water.
· Use natural or eco-friendly products – if you can eat the ingredients, the products are safe to use.
Step 2: Flush Toxins Out
Your body will naturally detoxify but try the following to accelerate the process (although keep in mind, the faster you release toxins, the more intense the detox side-effects – i.e. headaches, soreness, grumpiness, etc.):
· Drink lots of herbal teas(like mint and peppermint to aid digestion, dandelion to increase bile flow, milk thistle for liver detox and chamomile to help reduce anxiety).
· Drink lots of distilled water. I know, this is total repetition but it’s super important; distilled to reduce toxins and the water to flush.
· Increase your complex carbs or veggiesto about 65% of your diet. Round off your meals to approx. 25% protein & 10% healthy fats (from nuts, olive and flax seed oils, etc.)
· Use chlorella supplementsto cleanse your blood.
· Take milk thistle supplementsto cleanse the liver (but if you do, you don’t need the tea).
· Eat detox-friendly and easy to digest foods(like garlic, onions, prunes, lemons, naturally fermented sauerkraut, green leaves – especially spinach, cabbage, kale, swiss chard & collards – papaya, pineapple, berries, etc.)
· Exercise (cardio & strength-training) – aim for 4-6 times a week, alternating between mild, moderate and intense variations depending on your energy level.
· Hot, steamy baths or saunas– once a week.
· Stretch – integral for several reasons: it reduces muscle fatigue and soreness that is caused by the lactic acid (metabolic waste) released by muscle exertion; it also increases oxygen and blood flow, and decreases stress.
· Drink green juicesrich in detox-friendly foods – use as meal replacements.
· Drink smoothiesfor breakfast – check out the “yummy recipes” category here on Live Lighter!
· Do a partial fastonce a week – try going without food from dinner Saturday until dinner on Sunday – or whenever works for you. Adjust your activity level on these days to compensate for the lack of food energy, like take leisurely walks, do gentle exercises, etc.
Step 3: Repair and Heal
There are different methods, at varying strengths, of repairing and healing your body. A Naturopathic Doctor is the best resource for your individual needs. However, for the first-timer, try:
· Aloe vera juice– known to be one of the friendliest methods for intestinal repair.
· Increase your soluble fiber intake(like psyllium fiber and foods, such as several types of beans, carrots, broccoli and Brussels sprouts)
· Meditate – try for everyday, either in the morning or night, and as long as you can. Start with 10 minutes and practice till you’re up to one half hour.
· Sleep – the best way to find your optimal amount of sleep is to get up at the same time every morning and go to bed when you’re tired. Because you’ve limited your stimulants, your natural sleep rhythms should emerge.
Step 4: Replenish
Not only does cleansing get rid of toxins and bad bacteria, it unfortunately also flushes out the good bacteria that live in our guts. These probiotics are essential for proper digestion. It is important to rebalance the gut flora ratio of beneficial vs. harmful bacteria (85% – 15%):
· Consume probiotics– eat naturally fermented foods like yogurt, kefir and sauerkraut.
· Take acidophilus tablets(extra-strength).
· Eat foods known to have prebiotics – unrefined wheat and barley, raw oats, soybeans, leek, asparagus, artichokes, etc.
Step 5: After Cleanse
Resist returning to a highly toxic lifestyle. Reserve stimulating substances for special occasions and incorporate as many of the above cleansing methods into your daily lifestyle habits as possible.
Duration and Tips:Try this gentle cleanse for one month, although doing it for longer will give you better results. However, we all know it’s hard to do anything perfectly the first time around so be kind to yourself and simply do your best. Use the experience from this cleanse to better prepare for next season’s cleanse, identifying challenges so you can figure out ways around them.
Cleansing should be an experience to look forward to and if you feel increasing distress as your cleanse date nears, you’re not ready for it yet. If you feel as if you’re denying yourself true pleasure, then you will create stress – which actually inhibits detoxification! You’ll know you’re ready for a cleanse when life has become too much of a burden. Then you’ll be motivated to lighten your load – starting with the toxins in your body so that you can live lighter in body, mind and soul.
Plan your cleanse. Reduce your commitments for the cleanse duration and guard against the demands of others. Plan your activity (be flexible when necessary, of course) as well as your meals a week in advance. Use the Internet to find recipes, Saturday to get groceries, and Sunday to prepare your lunches and slice your veggies for convenience.