There’s been a bit of hype about Rooibos in recent years, and for good reason. Much as I love tea, there are some things that rooibos does better.
1. Caffeine-free: Unlike tea (and coffee), rooibos is naturally caffeine-free. No additional processing or chemical treatments necessary. If consuming caffeine late in the day keeps you up all night, or your doctor has advised to cut caffeine from your diet, but you love your iced tea with supper, or relaxing cup in the evening, rooibos might be just the ticket.
I consider rooibos to be a good choice when I want to share a relaxing pot of tea with my children.
2. Low in tannin: Rooibos is much lower in tannin than tea. If tannin upsets your stomach, this is very good news. Plus, tannin causes the bitterness in over-steeped tea. If you’re prone to wander off mid-steep and forget about your tea (not that I would know about that!) you won’t come back to a bitter cup with rooibos.
3. Flavor: Rooibos has an earthy, nutty flavor, and I notice a hint of a minty aftertaste. Plain rooibos is not my personal favorite, but I think it takes the addition of flavorings, dried fruit, flower petals and spices very well.
4. Oxalic acid-free: Good news if you’re prone to kidney stones. Rooibos doesn’t contain oxalic acid.
5. High in polyphenols, (antioxidants): If you’re looking for antioxidants in your diet, rooibos has them, but note that green (unoxidized) rooibos has higher antioxidant levels than red (oxidized) rooibos.
6. Contains aspalathin.
7. Contains the antioxidants quercetin and luteolin.
9. Rooibos contains Alpha-hydroxy acid and zinc.
If you want to find out what health benefits may (the jury is still out) be associated with those compounds, a quick internet search will enlighten you. I don't make health claims about tea, I just enjoy drinking it.
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