Saturday, May 9, 2009

Green Tea with Yerba Mate, Pomegranate Juice and Goji Berries

My Italian sensibilities are convinced that espresso is the nectar of the gods. However, my practical side knows that starting the day with a healthy drink packed with antioxidants is a more reasonable approach to begin each day. At home we start our day with this healthy fruit flavored tea. Only after I have the tea will I make myself a nice espresso or machiatto.

Studies have shown that consuming four cups of green tea per day is associated with a reduction in all types of cancer. I can think of no better reason than to include green tea in my morning beverage. Be certain to consume the tea within 2 hours of brewing to get the maximum benefit.

Yerba Mate is something fairly new at our house. We discovered it at the health food store about two years ago. Our initial reaction to a cup of plain yerba was that is tasted like we were drinking “freshly mowed lawn” as my husband so eloquently put it. We quickly decided the yerba needed to be consumed with other flavors if we were going to enjoy it. Yerba is reported to be both high in antioxidants and to be anti-inflammatory. It seems to have a mild stimulant effect that makes it a nice coffee replacement. You can find yerba both roasted and unroasted. We buy the unroasted yerba under the assumption that the less any product is processed the healthier it must be.

Goji berries are also known as wolfberries and have been eaten in China for many hundred years. Research indicates that the antioxidants in Goji berries help prevent cancer and heart disease. That was all I needed to read to give these little dried berries a try. When you buy the berries make certain to read the ingredient labels. Many manufactures add sugar to the berries. We buy our unsweetened dried berries from Amazon. There is a suspected drug herb interaction between goji berries and blood thinners. If you are on a blood thinner please check with your doctor before consuming goji berries.

Pomegranate juice is also high in antioxidants. Consuming 8 ounces of pomegranate juice per day has been associated with an overall reduction in the incidence in cancer. Preliminary research indicates that pomegranate juice is also associated with a reduction in cholesterol.

The beverage as we drink it is a little tart and not too sweet. If you still have sugar in your diet you may find that you need to add a little agave to the tea. I consider this my morning dose of antioxidants and look forward to it each morning.

Green Tea with Yerba Mate, Pomegranate Juice and Goji Berries
Makes one large mug of tea


2 green tea bags
1 bag of yerba mate (unroasted)
1 tablespoon of dried goji berries (unsweetened)
12 ounces of water (185 degrees)
3-4 ounces of pomegranate juice


Steep the green tea and goji berries in the boiling water for 5 minutes. Add the yerba mate and steep the entire mixture another 5 minutes. Add the pomegranate juice to the tea and enjoy.

1 comment:

  1. The combination of flavors in this tea work very well together.
    Green tea generally needs a boost, which it gets from the yerba mate. But the yerba mate is strong and needs to be tempered, which is accomplished by the pomegranate juice. The floating rehydrated orbs (i.e. goji berries) are a tasty antioxidant bonus.


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