Ancient and Traditional Uses
The Native Americans were the first to recognize the value of Bee balm, cultivating this wonder herb for its healing properties. Interestingly, it was used by the indigenous people of the land to treat fever, indigestion, and other common health issues, which is how Europeans learnt of the plant's overall health benefits. The Oswego Native Americans brewed tea from the plant's leaves, giving it its name Oswego tea, consumed for relaxation and medicinal purposes. Bee Balm teas popularity has continued to grow and spread to different parts of Europe.
Characteristics of the Plant
Bee balm which is a member of the mint family is known by many names, Oswego tea, bergamot, horsemint, and Monarda which is actually the genus of these flowering plants. Monarda has 16 species that are native to North America. The most cultivated ones are Monarda fistulosa (Wild Bergamot) and Monarda didyma (Bee balm, the herb that we sell here at Tea Life). Bee balm produces beautiful scarlet-red flowers collared by red-tinged bracts with tall, sturdy square stems, a gorgeous plant also valued for its natural healing properties.
Use in natural health
A cup of Bee balm tea is a deliciously relaxing drink that comes with the added benefit of being highly nutritious. Bee balm contains thymol, which is highly beneficial for overall health and is also a good source of Vitamins A and C. Regularly drinking Bee balm tea can provide the following benefits:
The Bee balm plant has antibacterial and antiseptic properties which help treat infections, bacteria, parasites, and fungi. Many people rave about the use of Bee balm as a natural and holistic mouthwash, used to provide relief for issues such as sore throats and mouth sores. Bee balms antibacterial properties have also found it to be used often as a treatment for sores and common coughs and colds.
Soothing for the digestive system
The soothing nature of bee balm means the tea is often used to treat indigestion, nausea and other digestive disruptions. Many females also benefit from using bee balm to help treat their discomfort during menstruation, commenting that it helps with bloating, cramps and excess gas. Being a member of the mint family many tea drinkers who enjoy the benefits of peppermint tea also opt for bee balm as it provides similar benefits with its somewhat light and spicy flavour.
We can't get enough of Bee balm tea for its many health benefits and relaxing properties but also for its great taste. Bee Balm tea has been described as having a herbal flavour that is a combination of mint, basil and even oregano. The bee balm plant has a number of varieties which all have a slightly different flavour, we love its variety.
Nursing mothers and pregnant women should avoid its consumption since this herb stimulates contractions in the uterus. Also, it is highly recommended that people with thyroid problems must consult a doctor first before consuming it.