For years I was known as the woman who always had a Diet Pepsi in my hand. I was never without one. Fortunately, for my health, I quit drinking soda, diet or regular, a decade ago. However, instead of sipping on a Diet Pepsi all day, I switched to unsweetened iced tea. And for more years, I was known as the woman who always had an unsweetened iced tea in my hand, usually a 32 ounce one from Sonic or McDonald’s.
Last year, though, a strange thing happened. I chose to undergo a 7 day juice fast. That was an amazing week, during which I only drank a variety of veggie and/or fruit juices, and water. My energy soared and at the end of the week of juicing, I felt incredibly healthy, light and fit.
I didn’t drink one iced tea that week and surprisingly, I didn’t crave one either. I think, for the first time, I was not dehydrated. A couple of days passed before I hit a drive through on my way home and picked up my usual 32 ounce tea. I only drank a quarter of it. The tea seemed bitter and I realized it did nothing to quench my thirst. The next morning, I woke up with stiff joints in my fingers and a general unwell feeling. I wondered.
I tried sipping on an unsweetened iced tea a few days later, and awoke with the same symptoms. It appeared my body was telling me to ditch the unsweetened tea. I listened. I quit drinking black tea that day.
I enjoy a hot herbal tea every afternoon. It’s become a soothing pause in my day that benefits my health as well. Today I had a cup of lemon balm tea. But with the warmer weather, I suddenly wanted a cold iced tea as well. What to do?
I remembered a couple of cold tea ideas from Life Changing Foods by Anthony William. It was time to experiment with teas.
The first cold tea is still steeping. I picked fresh dandelion blossoms, from the abundant crop in the yard, and dropped them into a small pitcher of cold water. The flowers will steep overnight. I’ll strain the tea in the morning and sip on it during the day. I’m excited to try it!
The second drink is a rose hips orange tea. I poured two cups of boiling water over a couple of teaspoons of dried rose hips, and let it steep for 15 minutes. After removing the strainer basket from the cup, I poured the tea into a small mason jar and added the juice of two oranges…a Cara Cara orange and a blood orange.
The tea mixture went into the refrigerator and chilled for a couple of hours.
Oh my goodness…this is a wonderfully flavored cold tea. I didn’t even add ice. The sweetness of the fresh orange juice perfectly complements the tangy rose hips tea, creating a very smooth and refreshing drink.
This is it. This is my iced tea for the summer months. Rose hips orange tea is simple to make, and I keep the dried herb and oranges on hand at all times. I can sip on this delicious tea without being concerned that my joints will ache. I know both rose hips and oranges are excellent health boosters. The search for an iced tea is over.