Ayurveda is an ancient mind-body science of living that developed in India. It encompasses a wide range of healthy living instruction that is both preventative and therapeutic. Charaka, the author/compiler of one of the foundation texts on Ayurvedic writes that “When diet is wrong medicine is of no use. when diet is correct medicine is of no need”.
This means is that in Ayurveda your pantry is your pharmacy, or your first line of therapy for illness. Like so many ayurvedic health and wellness recipes the cold and flu tea below includes many items that you may already have in your kitchen.
To maximize health benefits use freshly ground, organic ingredients. Whole spices mean volatile oils are not exposed to air, thereby slowing their breakdown. Start with pre-ground spices if that is all you have, however if you plan to use food for healing impact you may want to consider building a whole spice stockpile. Each ingredient in this recipe has an anti-cold property such as anti-viral, anti-mucus, or sore throat soothing. Combining these spices enhances their overall effect. Make this tea as a winter tonic or whip it up as a remedy if you are starting to feel a cold coming on.
Cinnamon Use a pinch of powder and stir with a cinnamon stick if you have one.
Cardamom Use pre-ground or toast in dry skillet, grind in mortar to crack pods. Remove pods and grind seeds.
Cloves Use pre-ground or grind in mortar and pestle
Black Pepper Use pre-ground or grind your own peppercorns
Ginger Use powder or a couple of fresh slices. Added tip: For a sore throat lozenge, heat thin slices of ginger in ghee/or butter, dip in rock salt and suck.
Tulsi (Holy Basil Tea) Used traditionally as an anti-viral. Add if you have it. Leave it for next time if you don’t. You can find this in most health food shops.
Organic Honey to taste if desired.
Mix a pinch of each ingredient in hot water. Add honey to taste. Let ingredients settle and drink, or use a tea ball or tea bag if you prefer a clear tea.
Fancy tea cup not required but highly recommended to enhance your drinking pleasure!
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