Rose petals not only smell great, they may also be great for your body as well. Roses smell sweet, but did you know they also taste sweet? Especially when brewed into rose tea, that is. Just as green tea is made from flowers, rose tea is made from the petals of the Rosaceae family of flowering plants. The tea can be brewed using dried rose buds, or fresh rose petals.
Here’s some information on this unique brew and the research behind its potential advantages when it comes to your well being.
1. Packed with Vitamin C
Rose petals contain vitamin C.1 This powerful antioxidant helps protect the tissues from damage done by free radicals. Free radicals are oxygen atoms that are missing an electron. They scour your body looking for that electron, and they don’t care where they find it. When they steal electrons from the cells that make up our tissue, that can lead to severe problems.2
If that weren’t enough of a reason to boost your vitamin C intake, consider this: Your body needs vitamin C for a number of important reasons. For one, it helps produce skin-boosting collagen. Collagen is a vital protein helps to produce cartilage, ligaments, and blood vessels. It also helps heal skin wounds, and it plays an important role in maintaining the health of your teeth and bones.3
Vitamin C has also been associated with helping protect the arteries of the heart against damage. Research indicates it does this by helping inhibit the development of atherosclerosis, or hardening of the arteries. Vitamin C, it is believed, helps to prevent the buildup of low-density lipoprotein (LDL), or “bad” bacteria, in the arterial walls.4
Evidence suggests that not having a high enough level of vitamin C could lead to an increased risk of cardiovascular problems.5,6
Vitamin C, according to studies, can also help reduce the risk of high blood pressure. Research shows that people who eat foods high in vitamin C (and other antioxidants) are at a lower risk for hypertension than people who don’t.7
2. Loaded with Polyphenols
Scientific evidence shows that rose petals also contain beneficial polyphenols.8 These are “micronutrients,” or tiny chemicals that act much like antioxidants. Green tea, rose tea, and many other types of teas contain polyphenols.9 Research shows that polyphenols could also help protect your cardiovascular system and help you maintain bone strength. Polyphenols may also play a role in helping to protect your brain from certain neurodegenerative disorders.10
3. Supports healthy cholesterol
In addition to vitamin C, rose petals contain several other beneficial antioxidants, including quercetin.11 This is a flavonoid – a pigment that gives rose petals their color.12 According to one study, people who consume high quantities of flavonoids typically have lower cholesterol levels than those who don’t.13 Another study showed that quercetin can lower LDL levels in people who are at a high risk of developing heart disease.14
4. Eases Cramps
Some women experience painful cramps during menstruation. Evidence suggests drinking rose tea could help relieve this problem. Researchers studying a group of women found that the ones who drank rose tea for six months showed less cramping during their periods. They also, according to the researchers, experienced less psychological stress linked to that cramping. The results suggest that rose tea is not only effective for helping with cramping, it is also completely safe.15
5. Weight Loss Booster
The flavonoids in rose petals, research indicates, might also help with weight loss. According to one study, an increased intake of flavonoids could help you maintain a healthy weight as you get older.16 Other studies have shown that flavonoids can help your body do a more efficient job of expending energy. This, in turn, could also lead to weight loss.17
How to Make Rose Tea at Home
You could probably find dried rose petals specifically made for rose tea in your local health food store. But if you’re one of those people who like to do it yourself, here’s a simple recipe to try at home:
- Wash a cup of fresh rose petals (make sure to buy roses that haven’t been treated with any pesticides, such as edible or organic roses). Dry the petals thoroughly (and gently) with a towel.
- Bring a cup and a half of water to a low boil – about 175°F. Pour the petals into the water, and let them steep for about 10 minutes.
- You’ll notice the water gradually taking on a rose-colored hue. Pour the water in a strainer, and allow the tea to cool for a short period before drinking. You can either drink the rose tea straight, or you can add flavoring, such as cinnamon or honey.18
The Last Word
Whether you’re looking to improve the condition of your skin, or searching for other ways to improve the health of your body, one way to do so might be drinking rose tea on a regular basis. But, just like any change to your dietary routine, you need to speak with your doctor first. He or she will take your complete medical history into account when determining whether it will be safe for you to start drinking this beverage.