Written By Nicolette Truscott – Chinese Medicine Practitioner
Let’s face it, the majority of us have been staring at far too many screens recently.
With a lot of industries having to move our working days online and lockdowns making the escape to Netflix seem so appealing, our poor eyes have been getting a workout! And now with the windy spring weather upon us, those unfortunate enough to suffer with allergies can find this a nightmarish time for their eyes.
Enter chrysanthemum and goji berry tea!!
With only two herbal ingredients, this tea is used as a traditional remedy for improving eye health and for soothing red, itchy, tired or dry eyes. The two herbs are a lovely balance to nourish as well as clear the eyes.
Chrysanthemum flowers (Ju Hua)
Chrysanthemum flower tea is commonly drunk in China, especially during the summer months, as it is thought to have a cooling effect on the body.
In Traditional Chinese Medicine one of the functions of this herb is to ‘brightens the eyes’ and is particularly useful when the eyes are red and itchy. Chrysanthemum flower tea is helpful for some to relieve stress, especially when accompanied by anger, frustration and headaches. This herb can also be useful for the skin and is used to help alleviate some specific heat dominant forms of acne and rashes.
A word of caution though, a small number of people can be mildly allergic to chrysanthemum tea. If you are allergic to daisies or ragweed it is best to give this tea a miss!
Goji berries (Gou Qi Zi):
Goji berries exploded into western popularity over the past century and earnt its label as a ‘superfood’. They are highly regarded due to their high levels of antioxidants, which helps protect the body from free radicles and reduce inflammation. It is though the actions of these antioxidants, especially the antioxidant zeaxanthin, that researchers think that these berries are able to protect the eyes and help support vision. Goji berries has one of the highest proportions or beta-carotene in all edible plants and contains significant amounts of vitamins A and C.
In Traditional Chinese medicine theory, Gou Qi Zi is a more tonifying herb than Ju Hua, and the slightly sweet flavour lends well to this tea. Gou Qi Zi also is known to ‘brighten the eyes’, but does it through the actions of supporting the yin and blood in the body in order to nourish the eyes rather than clear ‘heat’ inflammation and irritation. This is particularly good for the elderly and those with day to day life tasks that are straining to their eyes.
Recipe: Chrysanthemum and goji berry tea
Try this tea next time your eyes feel like they need a little nurturing. For those with jobs that strains their eyes, this tea is best taken daily.
Chrysanthemum flowers (approx. 5)
Goji berries (approx. 5)
Rock sugar or honey to taste (optional, if desired)
Gently rinse the chrysanthemum flowers and goji berries, then place into a cup or small teapot
Fill with boiling water (approx. 1 cup)
Let tea steep for 3-5 minutes, add rock sugar or honey to taste if desired then enjoy.
Nicolette is available for appointments in the clinic on Monday’s, Tuesday’s and Thursday’s. Call us on (03) 5429 3610 or book online below to secure your spot.