Rooibos ice tea is good for us, that much we know.
Not just as a cooling, refreshing alternative to sugar-laden, fizzy beverages when old Sol is beating down hard in the summertime, but also from an overall, health-boosting point-of-view.
But just how many awesomely excellent health benefits this nutrient-laden, antioxidant-packed beverage may offer our hearts, skins, tummies and stress levels (to name just a few) might surprise even the most sceptical of ice tea fanatics.
Before anything else, it has to be stated that rooibos is not technically a “true” tea.
Instead of being derived from the tea (Camellia Sinensis) plant, rooibos comes from the leaves of a shrub called Aspalathus linearis, which is native to South Africa’s mountainous Cederberg region. This makes rooibos a herbal ice tea, and not related to green or black ice tea at all.
Very low in tannins (4.4%, to be exact), 100% caffeine free, naturally sweet and deliciously fruity, rooibos has been credited with aiding sleeplessness, boosting the immune system and keeping our blood sugar levels in check, among its many, many other incredible (and scientifically proven) health benefits.
Indeed, rooibos has been brewed for centuries as a traditional remedy for stomach cramps, hay fever, inflammation, and many other conditions, with some rooibos enthusiasts even swearing that it can slow down the ageing process (although you may need to drench yourself in this tasty brew to test this particular theory!).
Yes, rooibos ice tea offers a plethora of potential health benefits, including digestive, skin-enhancing and mood-regulating properties.
But now it’s time to spill all the tea on this over-achieving beverage’s many health benefits. Join us as we explore the top nine reasons why it makes sense to choose rooibos ice tea over black or green ice tea.
1. Rooibos Ice Tea Is Naturally Caffeine Free
This fact alone makes rooibos ice tea an excellent alternative to black or green ice tea. You can have as many glasses as you like, and a delicious afternoon nap (not to mention an excellent night’s sleep) will still be on the cards!
2. It Contains a Unique Health-Boosting Ingredient Not Found in Black and Green Ice Tea
Among several others, rooibos contains a unique polyphenol called aspalathin. In a recent study, this protective plant compound has shown promise when it comes to protecting against free radical damage that can lead to serious health conditions such as heart disease, diabetes and, potentially, cancer.
3. Rooibos Ice Tea Beats Black and Green Ice Tea When It Comes to Antioxidants and Nutrients
Being packed with antioxidants is no doubt rooibos’ biggest claim to fame (and yet another one that green or black ice tea can’t hold a candle to). Eating foods rich in polyphenols has been scientifically proven to reduce chronic inflammation, something that can lead to an increased risk of heart disease, cancer and other critical health conditions.
Yup, calling rooibos ice tea “healthy” would be a bit of an understatement.
Its mineral content alone (high levels of calcium, iron, potassium, copper, zinc, manganese and magnesium, anyone?) puts it in a category all of its own when it comes to ice teas that are not only super-tasty, but also crazy good for you.
4. It’s Naturally Sweeter Than Black Or Green Ice Tea
This one’s a biggie. Tannins are natural compounds that are present in rooibos, black and green teas, but rooibos contains far less tannins than its black or green tea counterparts. This makes it a naturally sweeter drink than black or green ice tea.
The result is that less sugar is needed (if you are even into that kind of thing) to sweeten the deliciously fruity beverage that is rooibos tea.
This is a significant benefit as tannins often interfere with our absorption of certain nutrients – iron in particular. This lack of nutrient absorption can cause deficiencies in our bodies which hold some rather unpleasant consequences.
5. Rooibos Ice Tea Is Suitable for Babies (While Green and Black Ice Teas Aren’t)
Green and black tea (including ice tea drinks) contain caffeine, which make them big no-nos for little ones who need to sleep and nap according to regular, set routines.
The high tannin levels in both green and black teas can also interfere with certain medications, not to mention potentially upset baby’s stomach.
Naturally sweet and low-in-tannins, rooibos, on the other hand, can safely be given to babies in moderate amounts (provided that it’s natural and unsweetened, of course).
6. Unlike Caffeinated Green or Black Ice Tea, Rooibos Ice Tea Can Help You Stress Less
Rooibos tea has two key natural antioxidants in its stress-busting arsenal: nothofagin and aspalathin, both of which can assist in lowering stress levels. These two antioxidant rockstars help to lower cortisol (also known as the stress hormone) levels in our bodies.
Because green and black tea contain caffeine (a stimulant), drinking these beverages could lead to heightened levels of anxiety. But here’s the good news: a new study has shown that rooibos tea (the unfermented or green rooibos variety, in particular), due to its anxiolytic properties, may help to combat anxiety.
This means that rooibos (including rooibos ice tea) can lessen or prevent the degree of anxiety a person experiences.
7. Rooibos Can Give Your Skin a Healthy, Youthful Zing
Rooibos tea contains a powerhouse of polyphenol antioxidants. With their antiviral, antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties, these natural ingredients pack a mean punch when it comes to combating acne and keeping skin breakouts at bay.
Best of all, rooibos tea’s high antioxidant content can also make it effective in combating the free radicals that contribute to wrinkles and other signs of ageing.
8. Unlike Black or Green Ice Tea, Rooibos Ice Tea Deserves a Place in Your Anti-Allergy Arsenal
Yet another beneficial natural compound in the wonder beverage that is rooibos, is the bioflavonoid quercetin.
Quercetin helps to prevent our bodies’ immune cells from releasing the chemicals (also known as histamines) that cause allergic reactions (think skin rashes, hives, swelling, watery eyes, runny nose, rhinitis and swelling).
When hayfever or even the common cold takes hold, you know what to do!
9. As a Detox Buddy, Rooibos Ice Tea Is Hard To Beat
With its many antioxidant and health-giving benefits, sugar-free rooibos ice tea is becoming increasingly popular as a detox drink of choice. Packed with antioxidants, nutrients (and, lest we forget, 100 percent free from caffeine, chemicals and harmful substances), rooibos ice tea has “detox buddy” written all over it.
So next time you’re touring the South African festival circuit, be sure to stock up on BOS Ice Tea for the morning afters!
Bonus Reason: BOS Rooibos Ice Tea Is Crazy Good
As you may have noticed, we love rooibos. It’s pretty, it’s tasty and it’s (super, crazy) healthy, so really, what’s not to love about this unique and proudly South African herbal drink?