It’s no wonder Hibiscus is so popular for a variety of uses. In addition to its health benefits, hibiscus is used in many healthy and refreshing drinks.
Hibiscus flowers are known for their beautiful and colourful flowers, but they are also used medicinally. They come in a variety of colours . They can be red, yellow, white, or peach-colored, and can be as big as 6 inches wide. The most popular variety is Hibiscus sabdariffa. The red flowers of this variety are most commonly cultivated for medical purposes and used in teas and blends. Hibiscus grows in warm, temperate and tropical climates. In addition to the many health benefits of hibiscus, it can be used in a variety ways to make healthy refreshing drinks. No wonder it’s so popular.
Hibiscus a wonderfully colourful flower is more than a food garnish. Known for it’s sour taste, Hibiscus tea, is made from a mixture of dried hibiscus flowers, leaves, and dark red calyces (the cup-shaped centres of the flowers). After the flower finishes blooming, the petals fall off and the calyces turn into pods. These hold the plant’s seeds. Calyces are often the main ingredients in herbal drinks containing hibiscus. When the petals are steeped they release a rich cabernet like colour. Much like the cranberry, hibiscus tea can be used as a herbal drink hot or cold and is naturally calorie and caffeine free.
A deliciously coloured infusion of hibiscus can be made hot or cold and enjoyed with a little vodka or prosecco over ice.
This sour concoction of flowers and pods are used in many cultures and regions for specific remedies. In Africa, Hibiscus tea is used to treat constipation, cancer, and cold symptoms.
To lower blood pressure, treat maladies of the heart and nerves, the Egyptians used hibiscus tea to lower body temperature, and as a diuretic to increase urine production.
In Iran drinking sour hibiscus tea is still a very common remedy for high blood pressure. The sour taste comes from the inherent citric acid, vitamin C, and anti-lipid antioxidants.