Pine Needle Tea

Pine needle tea has been prized for thousands of years for its many health benefits. What’s so good about pine needle tea? Here’s what I found out at Forest Holidays:

  • Pine needle tea has a pleasant taste and smell (always a good start).
  • It is rich in vitamin C (5 times the concentration of vitamin C found in lemons) and can bring relief to conditions such as heart disease, varicose veins, skin complaints and fatigue
  • Vitamin C is also an immune system booster which means that pine needle tea can help to fight illness and infections.
  • Pine needle tea also contains high levels of Vitamin A, which is good for your eyesight, improves hair and skin regeneration and improves red blood cell production.
  • It can be used as an expectorant for coughs and to help relieve chest congestion; it is also good for sore throats.
  • It brings you clarity and mental clearness.
  • It can help with depression, obesity, allergies and high blood pressure.
  • Pine needles contain antioxidants. These reduce free radicals, which are harmful to humans and can cause disease.
  • Taoist priests drank pine needle tea as they believed it made them live longer. There is researched evidence that pine needle tea can help to slow the ageing process.
  • Pick some pine needles and let them soak in boiling water on your stove and it will add a crisp pine smell all over the house. Perfect for Christmas.

How to make pine needle tea

  • 1/2 cup young, bright green Eastern white pine needles
  • 3 cups water

Instructions:

Bring water to a boil in a stainless steel pan. Add pine needles to water and reduce heat. Simmer for 20 minutes and remove from heat. Cover and let sit overnight or continue to next step and serve.

Strain out pine needles, sweeten to taste, and serve tea hot or cold.

Notes: 

Make sure not to boil the pine needles in order to preserve the vitamin C and prevent the release of bitter terpenes. Vitamin C doesn’t last long, so drink this tea as soon as possible.

Pine Needle Tea In The Wild:

  • Collect pine needles
  • Build a fire
  • Light it
  • Boil water in a mess tin
  • Add pine needles and let them infuse in the boiling water
  • Sieve and serve

Enjoy your tea. Who knows, you might live to be 103 with 20:20 vision, a mind as sharp as a pine needle and no varicose veins. We’ll drink to that!

A word or two of caution:

Firstly, don’t try pine needle tea if you are pregnant. Secondly, most pine varieties can be used, but steer clear of Yew and Cypress which can sometimes be mistaken for pine. A good rule of thumb is to avoid flat needles. If in doubt, ask a Forest Ranger.

Found at: Forest Holidays

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"Diet has the distinction of being the only major determinant of health that is completely under your control. You have the final say over what does and what does not go into your mouth and stomach. You cannot always control the other determinants of health, such as the quality of the air you breathe, the noise you are subjected to, or the emotional climate of your suroundings, but you can control what you eat. It is a shame to squander such a good opportunity to influence your health." ~Andrew Weil, MD
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