During one of my workshops with Gurmukh, she told the story of her start with teaching yoga. She explained that she used to teach students out of her home and would serve tea after the class ended.
She would brew the tea, permeating the house with the spicy scent, which seemed to draw students as the flame does the moth. Not only did Gurmukh's popularity as a teacher grow, but her tea distinguished her and the experience of her classes from others. There's something about sharing a cup of tea with someone...
A Love of Yoga and a Love of Tea
I've loved tea since I was a little kid. Granted, my taste ran more towards Lipton back then, but I still loved the taste and the experience of tea. When I started practicing yoga, I became interested in the different types of tea and I became quite picky about what I drank (bye bye Lipton!). For me, yoga and tea went together. I'm not the only one who feels the same. After all, there is the well-known and ever popular among yogis, Yogi Tea. There's even a yoga studio in NYC that combines yoga and tea in regular events that bring people together.
Tea is Good for Your Health
Perhaps my link between tea and yoga was health. The more I practiced yoga, the more concerned I became about my health. I began to care for my body more attentively than before. The health benefits of tea are well-known. I spoke with Ani Bailey, co-owner of California Tea House about this very topic and she offered a quick run-down on the benefits of various types of tea:
There are many studies that suggest tea enhances health. One recent study published in the Journal of Nutrition links drinking green tea with 3 hour exercise per week to significantly reduce belly fat.
Other Tea Benefits for women:
- Breast Cancer
- Ovarian Cancer
- Natural Weight Loss
- Ovarian Cancer
- Acne & Skin Aging
- Natural Weight Loss
- Healthy Smile & Osteoporosis
- Healthy Hair
- Stomach Cramps due to PMS
- Naturally Caffeine-free and safe during pregnancy
Tea Recommendations from an Expert
Ani also offered recommendations:
- For yoga enthusiasts, I recommend oolong tea. It's not so commonly known as green or black, but great for healthy skin and weight loss. It contains caffeine so it's a perfect kickstart beverage for the morning.
- For green tea lovers, an excellent smooth choice is White Monkey Paw. Green tea is known for its never-ending list of health benefits, including weight loss and a clear mind. It also contains caffeine, another great morning cuppa. Some research that I found it that sipping green tea throughout the day while working out three times per week significantly reduces belly fat.
- A smooth, after yoga session tea I highly recommend Silver Needle White Tea, which is naturally soft, sweet and soothing.
- For a great night time cozy cup the perfect dessert tisane is a Rooibos based (a natural herb from a South African red bush) containing no caffeine, called Lemon Meringue Pie. It tastes as good as it sounds.
(Note: you can find all the teas mentioned above at CaliforniaTeaHouse.com)
Ani knows her stuff! Just last night I brewed up a cup of the Lemon Meringue Pie and not only did it satisfy my post dinner sweet craving, but it left me feeling soothed and relaxed.
I'm Having Tea for Dessert
Lately, I've been cutting down on my sugar intake, so I've been fascinated with dessert teas. Chocolate Chai (yes, it tastes just as delicious as it sounds) has become my new go to when I'm craving a little sweetness. I add a little almond milk and honey and my taste buds are doing a happy dance! California Tea House offers a variety of other dessert teas sure to satisfy any sweet tooth, including Blueberry Syrup, Fruity Dream, Gingerbread Chai, and Vanilla Bean Honeybush.
Save 20% on Tea
Ani generously offered y'all a 20% discount on tea, so if you're looking for some comfort in a cup take advantage. Do your shopping at California Tea House and use code YOGA20 at checkout to get the 20% discount. They don't charge for shipping and are happy to replace any tea that you're unsatisfied with, which makes shopping online a safe bet.
Yes, the little girl who drank her Lipton every day now has a whole cabinet filled with various teas. I have everything from Yogi Tea to loose teas like oolong, green, white, herbal, and rooibos. I've got tea to suit my every mood. Most days I sip it all day long. And my favorite way to enjoy tea? I have to agree with Gurmukh -- it's best enjoyed with others.
P.S. If you're inspired by tea drinking, you might enjoy these books:
More on the topic of tea...