Throughout history hibiscus was known by many peoples. Hibiscus tea was a favourite drink of the pharaohs from the ancient valley of the Nile.
Hibiscus belongs to the family of Malvaceae, originally from the tropical areas of the Central Africa, Southern Asia and the Central America.
There are more than 130 species of hibiscus, all of them being popularly known simply as hibiscus. A less frequent name is rose mallow.
They may be wild or cultivated, annual or biennial, having flowers ranging from bright yellow to dark red.
Hibiscus always looks neat, and its flowers are among the most beautiful and exotic in the world.
It is consumed throughout the world becaues of its favourable effect on the blood pressure, and its cooling and relaxing action.
Hibiscus contains limonic and hibiscus acid. Other significant ingredients include the antioxidants called anthocyanins, various flavonoids, pectin and fitosterol.
Apart from those, it contains between 7,5% and 9,5% iron, and 13 aminoacids, six of which are extremely important for the organism.
Studies revealed that hibiscus tea very effectively lowers the level of LDL cholesterol.
It contains bioflavonoids, which help prevent the formation of plaque on artery walls, lowering the blood cholesterol and preventing various other severe illnesses.
Hypolipidic and hypoglicaemic properties of hibiscus tea are useful for those who suffer from illnesses like diabetes.
A study has found that hibiscus tea significantly reduced cholesterol and triglycerides in patients with diabetes type 2.
Lowers blood pressure
The effect of hibiscus on blood pressure is well-known and corroborated by many studies.
Drinking a cup of hibiscus tea three times a day helps stabilize blood pressure.
Some studies even suggest that hibiscus tea is more effective than pharmaceutical drugs. Add to this its natural action without side effects.
To notice the healing effect, it is necessary to drink this tea during several weeks.
Protects from flu and cold
Hibiscus tea is a true treasure trove of vitamin C and antioxidants, and is great in case of cold and other infective illneses.
If you catch a cold, this will be a great first aid in overcoming the symptoms. It is also used in case of fever because it cools down the body.
Hibiscus tea has also proven great in wound healing.
Rejuvenates the organism
Hibiscus tea has been used since antiquity in Egypt, China and other countries as a beauty remedy.
It contains plenty of antioxidants which eliminate the harmful free radicals from the organism. Their elimination effectively slows down the aging process and extends the duration of life, which has been confirmed by many studies.
Helps with slimming
Hibiscus naturally reduces the appetite, thus helping with weight loss.
Even one cup of tea a day helps towards a reduction of meals, and consequently the weight loss. It also affects the absorption of carbohydrates and fats.
It slows the fat absorption so that they burn instead of being deposited in the body. It has a mild diuretic and laxative activity which purges the organism and reduces bloating.
Treats digestive problems
If you suffer from constipation, hibiscus tea can be of great help for the regulation of bowel movement.
It improves the general bowel and bladder function. Its calming action relieves colics and helps with painful bowel movement, as well as other digestive problems like the irritable bowel syndrome.
Hibiscus contains minerals and vitamins with antidepressant properties. Drinking one cup of hibiscus tea a day significantly helps improve mood.
It has been used for centuries to eliminate anxiety and to relax mind and body. If you have trouble sleeping, reach for a cup of hibiscus before going to bed.
Helps with diabetes and liver disease
Hibiscus tea is used in India to treat both types of diabetes. It is also widely applied in the Eastern medicine as a remedy for liver disease. If you have to take a large quantity of drugs like acetaminophen or other pain killers, hibiscus tea will help you protect the liver and reduce the harmful side effects of those drugs.
Quenches the thirst and cools the body
One of the most renowned hibiscus properties is cooling the organism, which makes it an ideal beverage for summer heat.
It is also used as a sports drink for quenching the thirst. For that purpose it is served cold. It acts as a diuretic, liberating the body from excess fluids and toxines, and enabling athletes achieve a better physical performance.