Mountain tea, a greek super food

Mountain tea, a greek super food

One of the most famous and loved herbs in the Greek countryside is mountain tea. Most of us learned this plant from our grandmothers who used it as a drink or a cold medicine, although its use goes back a long way.

Form and name

Mountain tea is a herbaceous plant that reaches 30 cm high and belongs to the genus "sideritis" (ironwort). Its flowers are usually pink, purple or yellow, depending on variety and area.

It is speculated that it took its name from the ancient Greek word "iron", as at that time it was considered to have had a healing effect on the wounds caused by iron guns. Of course, there are other theories about the origin of the name. According to another version, his name arose from the spearhead that has the sepals of blossoms. Some others believe that this name was given to him because it contains iron.


How many species exist and what risks they face

The genus Siderite includes more than 150 species. Most of these are found in the Mediterranean region, and many species also exist in Asia. The largest variety is found in the Iberian Peninsula, where at least 45 species have been recorded, most of which are indigenous.

Approximately 17 species of the plant belong to Greece. Mountain tea is found in our country with various names such as Vlach tea, Malev's tea or Taygetos tea, Moulos in Crete, Olympos tea, Parnassos tea, etc.

However, this treasure of the Greek land is in danger due to overconsumption. Indeed, there are few cases where Greeks or others are found, mainly from neighboring countries scanning the mountains of Epirus and Macedonia to grab huge amounts of tea and other herbs. In the summer months, the police bulletin fills with news about arresting people who illegally collect the herbs of Greek land. The damage they cause is irreparable, since it is usually not enough to cut down some leaves but they eradicate the whole plant.


Where it is used and why

Traditionally in our country mountain tea is used for colds, nasal congestion, coughing and various respiratory diseases. Another widespread use is for the treatment of stomach and gastrointestinal disorders.

Of course these are not the only beneficial properties of green tea. Particularly in recent years, which has entered the microscope of the scientific community, its therapeutic action is scientifically documented.

Mountain tea contains several antioxidant ingredients such as flavonoids, diterpenes, phenylpropanes, iridoids and monoterpenes.


The action of the herb through surveys

Some research shows that, in addition to antioxidant, it has anti-inflammatory, analgesic, antimicrobial and anxiolytic action. According to scientific research done by Greek researchers at the Athens Medical School, extracts of the "tea of ​​Euboea" and "tea of ​​Malevos" may in future be the basis for the creation of functional foods against osteoporosis.

Another research, this time by German scientists, has shown that the action of "Olym tea" can improve the symptom of Alzheimer's disease. Professor J. Pahnke of the University of Magdeburg, who was the head of the research, is one of the most ardent supporters of Sideritis, as K. Xenos and A. Stamatakis refer to their book "Get to know the Greek super foods" (Dioptras Publications).

In conclusion, all of you looking for overfishing from the farthest countries can choose something much closer than mountain tea, which could very well be described as the Greek super food.



How to make the drink

To prepare the beverage, boil one to two tablespoons of sweet tea (for each cup) for a few minutes, strain it and drink it. In order not to destroy the substances it contains, it is advisable to pour the tea into boiled water after we have removed it from the fire.

Its beneficial properties should add one more that it does not contain the amount of caffeine that has green tea, so it can be used even before bedtime. The fact that it is not a stimulant makes it suitable for all ages.

If we add a little honey and calf, then we have a perfect relaxing. If you want to use it as a morning drink, and especially as a tonic to start your day, you can combine it with a few yolks of Kozani saffron. Of course, we can drink it as frozen as a refreshing drink, dropping a few drops of lemon. For those who want to take off its taste, it is recommended to drop a little cinnamon powder. Of course, as with everything, so with mountain tea we should avoid excesses.


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Aggeliki Koskeridou

Holistic Doctor – Counseling Psychotherapist

Doctor of Naturopathic Medicine

MSc c. Health Psychology

insta: dr_aggelikikoskeridou_official 

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