The smell of ginger tea has defined my college career. Living and socializing mainly with international students from China in my time as a college student, I've gotten used to the sharp smell and spicy taste of the tea that really isn't strictly a tea. While this drink obviously isn't like more traditional teas in that it's made from a root rather than tea leaves, I feel it's a must try for anyone who enjoys tea. According to Chinese folklore, the tea is good for coughing and colds, as it has a "warm" property. In China, the tea is usually made by boiling peeled ginger root and can have brown sugar added to it according to preference.
Several studies have also shown that ginger tea has medicinal properties outside of Chinese natural medicine.
University of Georgia researchers found that daily ginger consumption could reduce muscle pain caused by exercise by 25 percent and researchers at the University of Michigan Medical School theorized that the root could have potential as a colon cancer prevention agent. It's also been found to help nausea and motion sickness as well as morning sickness in pregnant women.
A simple recipe for making ginger tea is to take 4 cups of water and at least a 2-inch piece of fresh ginger root and add the ginger root, sliced, into the boiling water for about 20 minutes. You can then strain the tea and add honey, lemon or brown sugar to taste.
Not up for making your own herbal tea? Try the very popular Gingerbread Chai Rooibos blend from California Tea House that's made with real ginger root.