The Anti-Inflammatory Iced Tea You'll Want To Sip All Day Long (It's Caffeine-Free!)
After a slow start, summer has officially hit with a vengeance. If there was ever a time to kick up your hydration, this is it—and if you're drinking tons of water, it might as well be both delicious and therapeutic. This iced tea knocks it out of the park on both counts, with a zesty, spicy flavor and a potent anti-inflammatory punch. There are a few key ingredients responsible for its super powers.
Tulsi, or holy basil, is a tisane (meaning that it's caffeine-free and not technically related to the tea plant) originally popularized in India. It's one of the original adaptogens to catch on in the United States and has a number of potent health benefits1, including helping the body respond to stress, protecting against infection, and reducing DNA damage. It's also highly anti-inflammatory. Tulsi has a fairly mild, lightly grassy flavor. As with all herbs, look for a high-quality organic brand—Organic India is one that's available at many grocery stores.
All fresh herbs contain oils with highly therapeutic properties, and rosemary is no exception. It's been known as a memory aid, helping aid in recall in a number of studies (so good to drink while you're at work all day!), while other studies2 point to its success as a cancer-fighter. It also contains carnosol, a compound known for its anti-inflammatory properties.
Thyme contains carvacrol, a compound shown to be3 a mood-booster. It's long been used to clear throat and nose passageways, as its antiviral and antibacterial powers can penetrate via steam deep into your mucus membranes (so if you feel something tickling in your throat when you make this tea, put your head over your glass and inhale deeply while it's steeping).
Together, the three ingredients create an anti-inflammatory mega-cocktail with a potent, fresh, summer-ready flavor that you'll want to sip on all day long. Here's how to make it.
Ultimate Anti-Inflammatory Iced Tea
- 2 bags tulsi tea
- 1 sprig fresh rosemary
- 4 sprigs fresh thyme
- 8 ounces filtered water
- Boil water, then pour over tea, rosemary, and thyme.
- Cover immediately, and let steep for 20 minutes.
- Remove tea bag and herbs (which should now be paler in color). Re-cover, and transfer to fridge.
- Let chill for 1 to 2 hours, then serve over ice. Serves 1.
Liz Moody is an author, blogger and recipe developer living in Brooklyn, New York. She graduated with a creative writing and psychology degree from The University of California, Berkeley. Moody has written two cookbooks: Healthier Together: Recipes for Two—Nourish Your Body, Nourish Your Relationships and Glow Pops: Super-Easy Superfood Recipes to Help You Look and Feel Your Best. She also hosts the Healthier Together Podcast, where she chats with notable chefs, nutritionists, and best-selling authors about their paths to success. Her work has been featured in Vogue, Glamour, Food & Wine & Women’s Health.