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Health Benefits of Hibiscus Leaves and Tea

The hibiscus plant is well-known for its huge, vibrant blossoms. These blooms not only bring beauty to a house or garden, but they also offer therapeutic properties. Teas and liquid extracts prepared from the flowers and leaves may be used to treat a wide range of ailments.

Continue reading to see how hibiscus may aid with weight reduction and cancer treatment, as well as reduce symptoms associated with the following:

  • Stomach ache
  • Hypertension.
  • Infections caused by bacteria
  • Fever.

Hibiscus blossoms come in a variety of colours. They can be red, yellow, white, or peach in colour and reach a width of up to 6 inches. Hibiscus sabdariffa is the most popular kind. This variety’s crimson flowers are most often produced for medicinal reasons and are sold as nutritional supplements.

Hibiscus tea, commonly known as sour tea due to its acidic flavor, is produced from a dried hibiscus flower, leaf, and dark red calyces combination (the cup-shaped centers of the flowers). After the flower blooms, the petals fall away and the calyces develop into pods. These contain the seeds of the plant. Calyces are often the primary component in hibiscus-based herbal beverages.

Throughout history, several civilizations have employed hibiscus to treat a variety of ailments. Egyptians used hibiscus tea to cure fevers, heart and nerve disorders, and as a diuretic to enhance urine production.

Tea was traditionally used in Africa to cure constipation, cancer, liver illness, and common cold symptoms. The leaves’ pulp was applied to the skin to aid with wound healing.

In Iran, sour tea is still a frequent therapy for hypertension.

Benefits

Historically, African cultures have utilized hibiscus tea to lower body temperature, cure heart disease, and soothe a sore throat. Hibiscus tea is used to treat hypertension in Iran.

Recent research has examined the potential function of hibiscus in the treatment of hypertension and excessive cholesterol.

High blood pressure

Consuming hibiscus tea, according to a 2010 research published in the Journal of Nutrition, decreased blood pressure in persons at risk of developing high blood pressure and those with slightly elevated blood pressure.

For six weeks, participants drank three 8-ounce portions of hibiscus tea or a placebo beverage everyday. In comparison to those who drank the placebo, those who drank the hibiscus tea had a considerable drop in their systolic blood pressure.

According to a 2015 meta-analysis of research, drinking hibiscus tea substantially decreased both systolic and diastolic blood pressure. Additional research is required to corroborate the findings.

Antioxidants

Antioxidants are chemicals that aid in the battle against free radicals, which cause cell damage.

Hibiscus tea is high in antioxidants and hence may help prevent damage and illness caused by free radical accumulation.

In one research, hibiscus extract boosted the activity of antioxidant enzymes and significantly decreased the detrimental effects of free radicals in rats (1Trusted Source).

Another rat research discovered similar results, demonstrating that some portions of the hibiscus plant, such as the leaves, had significant antioxidant qualities (2Trusted Source).

Bear in mind, however, that these were animal research using concentrated hibiscus extract. Additional research is required to establish the effect of hibiscus tea’s antioxidants on people.

Antioxidant effects of hibiscus extract have been shown in animal experiments. Additional research is necessary to establish how this may apply to people.

May help reduce blood fats

Apart from decreasing blood pressure, several studies suggest that hibiscus tea may also help reduce blood fat levels, another risk factor for heart disease.

60 participants with diabetes were randomly assigned to either hibiscus tea or black tea in one trial. After one month of hibiscus tea consumption, individuals with elevated “good” HDL cholesterol had lower total cholesterol, “bad” LDL cholesterol, and triglycerides.

Another research found that ingesting 100 mg of hibiscus extract daily was related with lower total cholesterol and an increase in “good” HDL cholesterol in persons with metabolic syndrome.

However, other research have yielded contradictory findings about the effects of hibiscus tea on blood cholesterol.

Indeed, a meta-analysis of six research involving 474 people revealed that hibiscus tea had no discernible effect on blood cholesterol or triglyceride levels.

Additionally, the majority of research demonstrating hibiscus tea’s impact on blood fat levels have been confined to individuals with certain illnesses such as metabolic syndrome or diabetes.

Additional large-scale research exploring the effects of hibiscus tea on blood cholesterol and triglyceride levels are necessary to ascertain the tea’s potential impacts on the general population.

Potentially Beneficial for Liver Health

Your liver is critical to your general health because it produces proteins, secretes bile, and breaks down fat.

Interestingly, research indicates that hibiscus may boost liver health and function effectively.

One research revealed that consuming hibiscus extract for 12 weeks alleviated hepatic steatosis in 19 overweight persons. This illness is defined by fat buildup in the liver, which may eventually result in liver failure.

Additionally, a research in hamsters confirmed the hibiscus extract’s liver-protective capabilities, demonstrating that treatment with hibiscus extract lowered signs of liver damage.

Another animal research found that administering hibiscus extract to rats boosted the levels of numerous drug-detoxifying enzymes in the liver by up to 66%.

These studies, however, all examined the benefits of hibiscus extract, not hibiscus tea. Further study is necessary to determine how hibiscus tea impacts the health of the human liver.

Contains Compounds That May Assist in Cancer Prevention

Hibiscus is rich in polyphenols, which are chemicals with potent anti-cancer potential.

Impressive findings from test-tube research indicate that hibiscus extract may have a beneficial impact on cancer cells.

Hibiscus extract inhibited cell proliferation and decreased the invasiveness of oral and plasma cell malignancies in one test-tube investigation.

Another test-tube investigation discovered that hibiscus leaf extract inhibited the spread of human prostate cancer cells.

Hibiscus extract has also been demonstrated in other test-tube tests to suppress stomach cancer cells by up to 52%.

Bear in mind that these were laboratory research using high concentrations of hibiscus extract. Human studies are required to determine the impact of hibiscus tea on cancer.

Conclusion

Hibiscus tea is a herbal drink that has a variety of health advantages.

Additionally, it has a delectable tart taste and can be prepared and eaten in the convenience of your own home.

According to animal and test-tube research, hibiscus may assist in weight reduction, enhance heart and liver health, and even aid in the battle against cancer and infections.

The majority of current research, however, is restricted to test-tube and animal experiments using high concentrations of hibiscus extract. Additional research is required to discover if these advantages are applicable to people who consume hibiscus tea.

What do you think?

Written by Babatunde Okerayi

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