The fame that hibiscus tea has gained in recent years is no wonder, as this drink is full of interesting therapeutic properties for our body. Many health benefits of hibiscus tea were already known to ancient peoples, and more and more science proves these effects.
For tea to truly exhibit these properties, it needs to be made from the calyx of the flower bud of Hibiscus sabdariffa, a variety of hibiscus found in health food stores and not usually grown in gardens. Discover the benefits of this drink:
1. Favoring Weight Loss
Hibiscus tea contains substances called anthocyanin’s, a type of antioxidant that helps prevent fat accumulation. This happens because these substances slow down the production process of fat cells.
In addition, this tea has the ability to block the amylase enzyme, which converts starch into sugar. Thus, if taken after meals, hibiscus tea helps to reduce the absorption of carbohydrates, which later turn into fat.
The result of these effects is a lower tendency to deposit fat in the abdomen and hips, which favors weight loss.
2. Control of Cholesterol Levels
Because it contains antioxidants and bioflavonoids, one of the health benefits of hibiscus tea is the regulation of cholesterol levels in the body. That is, this drink helps raise HDL (good cholesterol) and reduce LDL (bad cholesterol) and triglycerides.
The main advantage of this characteristic is that hibiscus tea exerts a protective effect on heart and blood vessel health, preventing heart attacks and strokes.
3. Diuretic Effect
Hibiscus tea is a good option for people who suffer from bloating and fluid retention, as it stimulates the elimination of this excess through urine.
Most natural teas have this effect, however, hibiscus tea has a unique advantage: it blocks the action of aldosterone, a hormone that acts on the kidneys and whose function is to reabsorb sodium and water, which would favor swelling.
4. Decreased Blood Pressure
Precisely because it has this diuretic effect, hibiscus tea stimulates the functioning of the kidneys and contributes to the elimination of accumulated liquids. As a result, there is a reduction in blood volume and, consequently, a decrease in blood pressure.
In addition, some lines of research have shown that the flavonoids in hibiscus tea are able to act on an enzyme responsible for controlling blood pressure.
5. Prevention of Diabetes and Metabolic Syndrome
Some studies have already shown that hibiscus tea helps control blood sugar levels and improves the performance of insulin in the body, two factors that help prevent diabetes.
In addition, as it also exerts control over blood pressure and contributes to the reduction of LDL (bad cholesterol), hibiscus tea protects against metabolic syndrome, which consists of the sum of the diseases diabetes, hypertension, and hypercholesterolemia and affects 20% of the population.
6. Improved Digestion Process
The active compounds in hibiscus tea have a slight stimulating effect on the intestines, facilitating the passage and elimination of fecal matter. To take advantage of this benefit, it is recommended to drink a cup of this tea on an empty stomach, right after waking up.
7. Fighting Aging
The antioxidant content gives the tea anti-aging properties. This is because these molecules help repair damage caused to cells by free radicals, which are called oxidative stress. In this way, tea is a good ally to prevent the appearance of expression lines, wrinkles, skin blemishes, and sagging, which are visible signs of the passage of time.
Despite its aesthetic benefits, hibiscus tea promotes anti-aging by preserving the immune system and mainly protecting against degenerative neurological diseases such as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's diseases.
8. Cancer Prevention
In addition to fighting to age, the antioxidant properties present in tea can also help prevent various types of cancer. This is because the phytonutrients present in this drink reduce the damage caused by free radicals to the DNA of cells, which can lead to mutations.
Also, this tea contains protocatechuic acid, a substance capable of inducing the death of cancer cells in a process called apoptosis.
How to Prepare Hibiscus Tea?
Heat 200 ml of water to boiling, turn off the heat and add 1 level teaspoon of hibiscus flowers (the equivalent of 5 grams). Leave to infuse with the lid on for 3 to 5 minutes and consume right away.
To better enjoy the health benefits of tea, make sure you are using flowers of the Hibiscus sabdariffa variety and do not put the plant to a boil, as this can damage its properties.