The blooms of the red clover plant are brewed to prepare a refreshing drink, that has many health benefits. In this HolisticZine article, we take a look at the benefits of tea made from this plant, and some of the side effects that are associated with it.
The usefulness of red clover tea was first discovered in China and Russia. It is scientifically known as Trifolium pratense, though common names include purple clover, cow clover, meadow clover, sweet clover, meadow honeysuckle, pea vine clover, wild clover, cleaver grass, and marl grass. It is a perennial herb native to Europe, but is also found in some parts of North Africa and Central Asia. The plant bears light pink flowers, which are brewed with tea for a host of health benefits and to enhance the taste of beverages.
Red clover is rich in active compounds and vitamins that have good medicinal value. You can obtain all the health benefits of red clover by consuming tea made using blooms of the plant in moderation.
- Tea made from the red clover plant is rich in antioxidants, like vitamins and minerals, that helps our body fight against the harmful effects of free radicals. These free radicals can cause serious cellular damage to body, and this tea has a neutralizing effect on them.
- Red clover tea acts as an expectorant. Its natural properties help in treatment of bronchitis, asthma, cough, and respiratory congestion.
- It is rich in phytoestrogens, that help in treatment of gynecological problems, like menopausal symptoms, vaginal dryness, and night sweats.
- Phytoestrogens also reduce the risk of osteoporosis and breast cancer.
- It boosts the immune system and helps in the treatment of prostate cancer and benign prostatic hypertrophy.
- It also acts as a supplement for estrogen.
- It reduces levels of bad cholesterol.
- It has also been used in the treatment of venereal disease, tuberculosis, and syphilis.
- It is also helpful in curing liver diseases and blood purification.
- It also acts as a diuretic, antispasmodic, and sedative.
- It helps in prevention of flatulence, infections, infertility, piles, eczema, skin eruptions, swollen glands, etc.
- It contains a compound known as coumarin, that acts as a natural anti-coagulant and has a blood thinning effect. It also makes the arteries more flexible and improves blood circulation.
Research has shown that there are no serious side effects associated with red clover tea. However, consuming this herb can cause nausea, rash, and headaches. It is sometimes found to interfere with cancer drugs like tamoxifen, and might also alter the effects of drugs taken to control diabetes. Red clover might also increase the effects of blood thinning drugs. It should always be taken after consulting a doctor.
It interferes with body’s ability to process drugs that are broken down by liver enzymes. People undergoing hormone replacement therapy and those on birth control pills should not consume red clover tea as this might alter the effects of the pills. Although the tea is safe, the exact dosage must be determined by doctors to avoid any side effects.
Red clover tea can be prepared by adding 1 tablespoon of dry flowers or herb to 1 cup of boiling water. Steep for 10-15 minutes and sweeten to taste. This preparation can be consumed warm for an upset stomach and cough.
Disclaimer: The information provided in this article is solely for educating the reader. It is not intended to be a substitute for the advice of a medical expert.