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Loose-Leaf Herbal Tea or Tea Bags?

Written by: Kimberly DuBois



Time to read 2 min

At first glance, a tea bag seems like a convenient option. Some may argue they don’t have enough time to make a proper herbal tea infusion, or the thought may not have even crossed their minds. Allow me, an herbalist (who has made and drank many herbal tea formulas), to share my 30-plus years of experience on this topic.

Making Loose-Leaf Herbal Tea

If you enjoy herbal tea infusions as much as I do, you may as well go all the way and soak it loose! A proper steeping vessel, such as a French Press, makes it super easy and much more beneficial for your health. You simply measure 2 tbsp. of your loose-leaf herbal tea blend of choice into the press, and pour 16oz. of just boiled water over the herbs. Cover and allow to steep for 10-15 minutes. Decant by pressing the herbs to the bottom and pouring them into your favorite mug or to-go cup. There you have it, a brew chocked full of readily available vitamins and minerals, plus full-bodied flavor.

The Benefits of Loose-Leaf Herbal Tea

When you consume herbal teas this way, 4 to 5 times weekly for 6 to 8 weeks, you will experience a tonifying effect on the body's organ systems. It works much like super nutritious food would, yet without taxing the digestive system, as the nutrients are readily absorbed into the bloodstream. So easy and so satisfying! In our house, we love the ritual of nourishing and nurturing ourselves this way. Our daughter enjoys a blend to keep her acne-prone skin at bay. I’m enjoying and benefiting from an herbal tea blended to ease menopausal changes, and my husband is toning the organs (lungs and large intestines) most vulnerable in the autumn season.

The herbs in our herbal tea blends are hand-picked from the optimum part of the plant for flavor and health benefits, and cannot be properly brewed in a tea bag.

Tea Bags

Oh yes, I got so excited about sharing my brewing preference that I nearly forgot about the good old tea bag. Well, typically tea bags contain herbs whereby the leaves are crushed, so the freshness and quality can be compromised. As soon as you break down the cell wall of a plant to that degree, you lose volatile oils and nutrients. Plus, the amount of herbs in a typical tea bag is a tablespoon if you’re lucky. When you fill your mug with water and the steam escapes with whatever volatile oils are left, you end up with a weak cup of tea. This could mean you need 2 tea bags for a decent cup of tea, and it ends up being an inferior quality brew, plus less cost effective. Now, there are exceptions for having a decent cup of tea bag tea. Examples of herbs that loan themselves to this method, would be the mint family such as, peppermint, spearmint and catnip. Chamomile and lemon balm also give their energies easily to this use.

A cup of loose-leaf herbal tea infusion is 1/3 to 1/2 the cost of brewing from a tea bag.

You get the most for your buck and body with a loose-leaf herbal tea infusion. Once you get used to doing it this way and have what you need for convenient brewing, you will not look back! I would not be without an ongoing favorite brew for anything. This, for my family and me, has been a powerful health-enhancing ritual that I would not trade for any other. Give it a try, and you, too, may feel the benefits and get hooked!  

Happy Brewing!


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