You may have heard of the many ways smelling lavender helps our nervous system promote calm and wellness. But did you know that drinking lavender tea can give you all of those and more? Learn more below about the positive health effects of lavender tea and how to brew an utterly satisfying warm mug of this healthy concoction.
Lavender is a classic European garden flower that produces tiny, purple blossoms, so beautiful they inspired their own color name.
While we love to walk past a patch of these pretty plants, it's not just the look that makes us stop and stare - the distinct and fragrant smell of the lavender flower is really something to behold.
The smell of fresh lavender is both pleasing and beneficial for us, producing a calming effect on the brain and body that can help promote better sleeping habits and moods.
Lavender essential oil is everywhere these days, and while you should definitely pick some up, don't forget to try some fresh or dried blooms in a warm cup of herbal tea to reap even more of its healthful benefits.
What benefits, you say?
We're sharing the many potential and proven health benefits of drinking hot lavender tea below, along with simple instructions to brew yourself a delicious cup of this floral tisane.
What is Lavender Tea?
Lavender tea technically isn't tea at all - it's a tisane, an herbal infusion that doesn't contain tea leaves but uses a similar brewing method.
Lavender is a versatile garden plant originating in Mediterranean Europe, with French and English varieties.
While we see lavender essential oil gaining a lot of traction as a scent that promotes calm, drinking tea with lavender for anxiety and sleep can work in much the same way, with the added benefits of ingestion.
Lavender plant leaves are edible, but we use only the plant's young blossoms to create a hot tea, which can be a part of a wind-down bedtime routine or as a soothing pick-me-up any time of the day.
Lavender tea tastes delicious, but it may be an acquired taste compared to some other beverages - its flavor can tend toward bitterness, so feel free to sweeten up your cup if you don't enjoy the taste.
We recommend drinking English Lavender tea, as it contains many health benefits and has a sweeter taste than other lavender varieties.
Health Benefits of Drinking Lavender Tea
What is lavender tea good for? A whole lot, it turns out! While most of us know to use lavender for sleep, there are plenty of other, lesser-known health benefits of lavender tea, too.
Stress Reduction + Stabilizes Mood
The most significant benefit of lavender tea is its ability to make us feel a little more zen. The act of drinking an extra-hot cup of lavender tea will not only be a mentally relaxing ritual, but it will physically relax your body and mind with many crucial chemical compounds.
Lavender contains linalool, which may reduce anxiety and calm the body, while other ingredients stimulate the brain's neuroreceptors that reduce the excess stress hormones in our body.
It's important to note that while lavender may help promote mood and reduce stress or anxiety, it's not the solution to mental health struggles - use lavender in conjunction with other more comprehensive mental health therapies and aids.
Anti-Inflammatory + Pain Relief
Lavender contains many anti-inflammatory properties that can help fight off excess inflammation in the body, which causes chronic pain and excessive muscle or joint pain. If you're suffering from a painful acute injury, try a hot cup of lavender tea for a little extra relief (though we don't recommend it to replace painkillers and other helpful anti-inflammatories).
Drinking lavender tea and smelling lavender can help reduce migraines, tension headaches, and menstrual pain for some people.
Anti-inflammatories also help reduce common inflammation in the gut to promote better digestive health and balance its microbiome.
Promotes Good Sleep
The smell of lavender can increase relaxation, which is a convenient tool to use at bedtime. And while there isn't enough research to prove lavender will make you sleep, there is much anecdotal evidence that we feel calmer after inhaling the scent of lavender.
Drink a hot cup of lavender tea, put some lavender essential oil in your favorite diffuser to head straight to sleepy land, and stay there. The calming effect of lavender may help you reach deeper sleep levels throughout the night to wake up feeling well-rested and more energetic.
Antioxidant for the Body
The lavender plant is full of antioxidant-promoting compounds, which can help improve immune system function and fight off free radicals - excessive toxins that float around the body through the bloodstream.
Skin Health + Wound Healing
Over the years, we've heard plenty of beauty tips boasting about lavender benefits for skin. While there isn't a ton of clinical research on this topic, one study seems particularly promising. Researchers applied lavender oil on rats every day for two weeks, and the size of open wounds reduced more quickly than the control group rats. This study indicates that lavender could be a potentially helpful tool in healing wounds and acne, a specific type of wound.
Some other potential lavender skin benefits come from the calming, anti-inflammatory effects of the plant, which could help reduce acne and other skin issues, like psoriasis.
How to Make Lavender Tea
You can brew a hot pot of lavender tea using either fresh or dried flowers from the lavender plant. If you're sourcing your lavender at home or from local gardens, ensure the grower didn't use harmful pesticides on the plants that can be toxic to humans.
It's best to harvest lavender blooms right before they begin to open when the smell and taste are at their peak.
Lavender Tea Recipe
- Bring fresh, filtered water to boil on a stovetop or in an electric kettle.
- Measure out your lavender. Use 2 tsp of fresh buds or 1 tsp of dried flowers in a medium-sized mug, or the same measurements added for every 8-oz cup of water you pour into a teapot.
- Steep your lavender blossoms in the boiling water for 5-10 mins, depending on your desired strength and flavor.
- The variety of lavender you use will create a more sweet or bitter-tasting tea. To reap the full spectrum of lavender's health benefits, you'll want to use Lavandula angustifolia, English Lavender. If you find this lavender too bitter, add some raw honey to sweeten the cup, along with some health benefits of its own.
Lavender Tea Blends
Some people enjoy blending lavender herbal tea with other teas for taste and added benefits. Lavender blends very well with black tea, mint, and chamomile for both caffeinated and decaffeinated options.
Lavender Tea Side Effects
Before you pour yourself a big, healthy mug of lavender tea, there are a few caveats to consider.
While drinking lavender tea is entirely safe for most of us to consume, it can affect certain hormones in our bodies. We don't recommend drinking lavender tea during pregnancy or for pre-teen males, who may experience adverse hormonal effects.
And like any other food we consume, it's possible to develop allergies or intolerances to lavender. If you're having allergic reactions or difficulty digesting your lavender tea, quit drinking it immediately.
Final Notes: Effects of Lavender Tea
Use our words of caution and avoid serving this tea to pregnant women or adolescent males to prevent unwanted adverse effects on the hormones.
While lavender tea can promote some of the health benefits mentioned, nothing is a magical healing potion. You can drink lavender tea and use the essential oil to aid a bigger, more comprehensive plan to live a healthy lifestyle.
We hope you enjoy brewing yourself a hot cup of lavender tea to drink up and enjoy!