People have been drinking hemp tea for thousands of years, not only for relaxation, but also to treat numerous different medical conditions. What are the medical benefits of drinking hemp tea?
Some of the most popular teas that people drink therapeutically are green tea, mint tea, and cannabis or hemp tea. With modern science uncovering a slew of health benefits associated with cannabis and hemp products, it makes sense that drinking hemp tea could prove beneficial just like many other herbs.
Since coronavirus is making the rounds and we’re still half a year to a year before it’s gone, it might be a good idea to start finding ways besides smoking CBD flowers to get your daily dose of cannabinoids. Organic hemp tea can be made from all different types of plant cuttings including the seeds and roots, and it can be brewed using both young and mature plants.
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So, let’s a closer look at how cannabis and hemp tea is made, and the many ways that it can benefit you.
Young vs Mature Hemp Tea
First things first; when it comes to brewing tea, it all begins with the plant. In the case of hemp tea, the starting point is deciding whether to use young hemp plants or mature ones. As expected, younger hemp plants have less CBD content than fully grown ones. They are typically used well rounded profile of terpenes, flavonoids, vitamins, and chlorophyll.
Despite lower cannabinoid levels, there are numerous benefits that are said to be specific to the consumption of young hemp tea. These include: increased red blood cell count, body detox, balanced hormones, prevents kidney stones, boost immunity, improved gastrointestinal function, strengthened the bones, and preventing bad breath.
Mature hemp tea, which of course uses older plants, will have much higher levels of CBD and other cannabinoids. Because it’s made from hemp flowers, it won’t have enough THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) to get you high, but you’ll be able to feel more of the benefits associated with CBD, CBG, and other non-psychoactive cannabinoids.
Mature hemp tea is said to have its own list of benefits, unique to those of young hemp tea. The benefits of mature hemp tea include: alleviating symptoms of nausea, relieving chronic pain, improves heart health, alleviates respiratory problems, reduced inflammation, and prevents symptoms of certain chronic diseases like Alzheimer’s and epilepsy
It’s important to note that all this symptom relief is not well documented, and there are no official studies on the medical benefits of hemp tea consumption. This is all based on anecdotal evidence and traditional uses.
Drinking Hemp Tea vs Cannabis Tea
Again, let’s take a quick moment to get back to the basics. Cannabis and hemp are just different species of the same plant, but there is a notable legal distinction between the two.
While cannabis has all of the major cannabinoids and is generally THC-dominant, hemp is classified as having less than 0.3 percent THC. Hemp flowers are usually high in CBD, but it can also have other abundant compounds like CBG (cannabigerol).
If you’re brewing cannabis tea with higher levels of THC, you’ll likely experience all the fun, psychoactive effects that come along with it. If you want to relax or benefit medicinally without any high, then hemp tea is the better option.
Another way to get cannabinoid infused tea is by making your favorite regular tea (mine is green for example), and adding a couple drops of CBD or THC oil. Keep in mind that both of these compounds are not fat soluble, so they will need to be mixed with a fat like coconut oil, milk, or whipping cream.
Medical Benefits of Drinking Tea
In general, tea is believed to offer many physical benefits and it’s been used therapeutically for millennia. Tea is full of polyphenols, which are the main health-promoting molecules in the herbs. Lab studies on animals and thousands of years of anecdotal evidence in humans indicates that these compounds – known scientifically as catechins and epicatechins – have anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties.
Harvard-led research found that people who drink tea (and coffee) regularly are at lower risk for diabetes and heart disease, but they haven’t determined whether this is completely a result of tea-drinking or if people who drink tea just naturally lead healthier lifestyles.
“Tea consumption, especially green tea, may not be the magic bullet, but it can be incorporated in an overall healthy diet with whole grains, fish, fruits and vegetables, and less red and processed meat,” says Qi Sun, assistant professor in the Department of Nutrition at the Harvard School of Public Health.
As far as hemp and cannabis tea goes, there is no research yet in this field. However, if other teas and coffee drinks are beneficial, one can assume the same about hemp and cannabis tea, especially considering all the documented ailments that are being treated with these plants such as mental health disorders, chronic pain, epilepsy, digestive disorders, bacterial infections, and more.
Tea for Respiratory Conditions
Now comes the million-dollar question, can hemp and cannabis tea be a suitable, alternative-treatment option for someone suffering from a respiratory disease? For a person dealing with asthma, ARDS, COPD, or even COV-19, can hemp or cannabis tea offer some relief?
The official answer is, we don’t know because there is no concrete evidence. Unofficially, it probably won’t heal you completely or kill any viruses, but it can certainly provide a great deal of symptom relief. Once again, green tea has been studied and it does, in fact, have a positive impact on respiratory disease. Here’s what a 2016 study had to say on the topic:
“Herbal medicine-derived natural products can be considered as an alternative therapeutic potential for respiratory diseases since several compounds showed anti-inflammatory effects inhibition different inflammatory mediators involved in respiratory diseases such as asthma, ARDS, and COPD.”
Research from 2018 echoed these results. “The incidence of COPD decreased from 14.1% to 5.9% with increased frequency of green tea intake from never to ≥2 times/d (P < 0.001). In the fully adjusted multiple linear regression model, the frequency of green tea intake showed a linear dose-response relation with FEV1/FVC (P-trend = 0.031). In the multiple logistic regression model, the OR for COPD among people who consumed green tea ≥2 times/d was 0.62 (95% CI: 0.40, 0.97), compared with those who never drank green tea, after adjusting for all covariates.”
If green tea can do it, it’s not a stretch to assume that other types of tea, like hemp and cannabis, can do it as well. Plus, just drinking hot liquid in and of itself is beneficial. Hot liquids relieve nasal congestion, prevent dehydration, and soothe the membranes that line your nose and throat and become inflamed if you’re coughing or sneezing a lot.
Make your own hemp tea
If you’re interested in making your own hemp tea, here’s a quick, basic recipe to get you started.
Homemade Hemp Tea:
- Use 1 teaspoon of dry hemp or cannabis leaves per 1 cup of water
- Put the plant matter into an empty, pleated tea bag and close it
- Pour boiling water over the bag of plant matter
- Let it steep in the hot water for 5 minutes
If you want to add some flavor it, you can try adding some additional ingredients like honey, cinnamon, anise, and vanilla. Remember, you need to add a fat in there for the cannabinoids to fully mix into the beverage. Coconut oil, milk, butter, or cream are all good choices.
You can also make tea with fresh roots of the hemp or cannabis plant. This requires quite a bit more preparation as you will need to clean, dry, and powder the root before it can be used.
Make sure to only choose quality hemp flowers, organic and clean of pesticides!
To summarize, there really is no official evidence pointing to the benefits of drinking hemp or cannabis tea when you’re sick. However, informal research says it works, hot beverages are good for you, and there absolutely no harm that can come from drinking it, so you might as well give it a shot during the rest of this unpredictable sick season.