TEA FOR MEDITATION:
1 tablespoon China black or English breakfast tea
2 teaspoon chamomile
1 teaspoon rose hips
2 teaspoon elder flower
TEA FOR RELAXATION:
1 tablespoon English breakfast tea
1 teaspoon elder flower
2 teaspoon rose hips
1 teaspoon chamomile
2 teaspoon hops
1 teaspoon valerian
Headache Tea Recipe:
Put a pinch of Lavender, Chamomile, Rosemary, and Mint into a coffee filter and make it like you would coffee. Or you can put the herbs in a spice ball and leave in hot water for 15 to 30 minutes.
10 Teas for Stress
Mints (Mentha spp.)
Herbs in the mint family, especially spearmint and peppermint, add a refreshing flavor and mild sedative action to herbal teas. They are especially soothing to an upset stomach.
Mountain Rose Herbs produces a Peace Blend tea blend which includes spearmint along with other relaxing, calming, and stress relieving herbs such as chamomile, passionflower, and lavender. Another commercially available blend that you might want to try is Sweet Dreams herbal tea by Bigelow Teas which contains chamomile, peppermint leaves, spearmint leaves and hibiscus flowers.
German chamomile (Matricaria recutita)
The delicate apple-like scented flowers of chamomile are useful for people suffering from hyperactivity, indigestion, insomnia, and nausea. One of the benefits of chamomile tea is that "The whole flower infuses to create an aromatic brew that is soothing for mind, body, and spirit" mentions Johnston. And Scott Graham, Director of Tea Product Development at Celestial Seasonings, mentions that "Chamomile is one of our top ten sellers in the herbal tea category. A cup of chamomile tea is especially calming in the evening, when you are settling down for a good night's sleep."
One of my favorite herbal teas is Celestial Seasonings Honey Vanilla Chamomile which blends together chamomile, lemon grass and orange peel among other ingredients. One note of caution when using this herb, chamomile tea is made from the whole flower head and may occasionally cause an allergic reaction in persons susceptible to pollen allergies.
Ginseng (Panax ginseng)
The dried roots of ginseng are used in cases of insomnia, nervous exhaustion, and stress. Siberian ginseng (Eleutherococcus senticosus) exhibits properties similar to authentic ginseng. This bitter tasting herb tastes best when blended with some of the more palatable herbs.
You may want to try one of the commercially available ginseng tea blends such as Satori Teas Ginseng Power+ Stress T'Eze which incorporates appetizing ingredients such as hibiscus flowers, orange peel and logan fruit along with the ginseng to make a delicious beverage. And Mountain Rose Herbs makes a Winter Spice Tea which is a stress reducing blend of Siberian ginseng, cinnamon, orange peel and ginger.
Skullcap (Scutellaria lateriflora)
The whole plant can be used as tea to help relieve a variety of symptoms. "Skullcap is a relaxing herb that you can use for insomnia, headache, nervous exhaustion, muscle spasms, and the nervous tension and irritability associated with premenstrual syndrome," says Christopher Hobbs, herbalist and author of Herbal Remedies for Dummies.
Lavender (Lavendula angustifolia)
The leaves and flowers of lavender are utilized and provide a slight flowery taste to herbal teas. The symptoms that are alleviated by lavender include anxiety, indigestion, irritability, nervous exhaustion and tension headaches.
Lemon verbena (Aloysia triphylla)
The lemon flavored leaves and stems of this herb make a delightful addition to herbal teas. Lemon verbena is used to help alleviate indigestion, insomnia, and nausea. Bigelow Tea manufactures the I Love Lemon & C Herb Tea which includes lemon verbena along with lemon grass, lemon peel, rose hips, hibiscus flowers, and peppermint leaves plus added vitamin C.
Catnip (Nepeta cataria)
According to Deni Bown in her book The Herb Society of America New Encyclopedia of Herbs and Their Uses catnip has a variety of medicinal uses including insomnia, excitability, palpitations, nervous indigestion, stomach upsets, and digestion-related headaches. The following comment regarding catnip can be found on the Celestial Seasonings website; "Interestingly, although catnip causes quite a bit of excitement in cats, it is believed to have exactly the opposite effect on humans. Catnip tea has a long history of use as a calming brew, to soothe your stomach and quiet your mind."
Linden (Tilia spp.)
The aromatic flowers of this herb help relieve anxiety, headaches, indigestion, and nervous tension. Celestial Seasonings Sleepytime Herb Tea, which can be used to both calm your nerves and relax your body, includes Mexican tilia flowers (Tilia estrella) in addition to chamomile flowers, spearmint leaves, lemon grass and other tasty ingredients.
Passionflower (Passiflora incarnata)
"Herbal teas for relaxation are made with valerian, hops, passion flowers, or chamomile," says Richard Craze, author of Herbal Teas. The leaves and stems of the passionflower vine are utilized in teas by persons suffering from anxiety, insomnia, irritability, nervous tension, PMS & menstrual problems, and tension headaches.
Valerian (Valeriana officinalis)
Valerian is a bitter and musky tasting herb that tastes best if it is blended with other more palatable herbs. The roots are useful in relieving anxiety, insomnia, and tension. "Actual clinical trials show that valerian can help users fall asleep faster and have a deeper, more refreshing night's sleep," mentions Hobbs.
Valerian is a potent herb which Celestial Seasonings recommends to promote an extra fast, restful, natural sleep.
"Celestial Seasonings Sleepytime Extra Wellness Tea contains valerian, an extra ingredient not included in our Sleepytime Herb Tea," explains Graham.
A few other herbs, not covered in this article, that can help to induce a restful nights sleep include hops (Humulus lupulus), lemon balm (Melissa officinalis), borage (Borago officinalis), Arabian jasmine (Jasminum sambac), and lemon grass (Cymbopogon citratus).