In the last six or eight months I’ve been doing a lot of research about alternative health care possibilities to help my mother with her unending arthritis pain. I was very impressed by some medical school studies on turmeric and the positive results from drinking turmeric ginger tea.
They found that participants who cut out sugar and drank turmeric ginger tea several times a day experienced a greater reduction in pain than those who took prescription pain killers with narcotics in them!
I started exploring recipes and trying out different ones. My mother didn’t like any version I came up with and she absolutely refuses to even cut back significantly on sugar so I can’t say she had a good result. But I am reaching the age where I have some aches and pains and a big awareness of how much arthritis runs through my family tree. I was also impressed with the many benefits (not just arthritis) of both turmeric and ginger.
So I kept fiddling with different recipes, trying to get an easy version that tasted good Most recipes say you can use either ground seasonings or fresh turmeric and ginger and some totally favor the fresh. I quickly realized there’s no way I’m standing around grating fresh ginger and turmeric every day so I use the ground stuff. It does taste better with the fresh.
I drink a cup every day and not only are the little aches and pains gone but I am so energized by it I have to be careful how late I fix it or it keeps me up!
Turmeric doesn’t absorb readily so many recipes include either peppercorns or coconut oil, both of which help more of the turmeric to be absorbed. I haven’t tried the peppercorns, as that doesn’t sound good to me. I keep coconut oil around so I add the oil. Amounts of all ingredients vary wildly from one recipe to another, so I played with it until I used what seemed like the minimum I could add for effectiveness while keeping the taste pretty good.
One recipe I found added a bunch of cinnamon, cloves and allspice. It really helped the — frankly not very good — taste but none of the spices dissolve in the water and they create a thick sludge at the bottom of the cup. In a fine strainer the sludge blocked the holes and prevented any water from getting through and any larger strainer let all the spices land in the cup. But the added flavor really made the tea pretty good.
So I thought of Bengal Spice tea from Celestial Seasonings and the similarity to the spices I added to the tea. It worked.
Leigh’s Turmeric Ginger Tea
- 1-1/4 cup water
- 1 bag Bengal Spice tea
- 1/2 tsp. ground ginger (or 1/2 inch fresh ginger, peeled and grated)
- 1/2 tsp. ground turmeric (or 1/2 inch fresh, peeled and grated)
- 1/2 tsp. coconut oil
- Optional: 1/2 tsp (or more to taste) agave syrup
- Optional: splash of vanilla creamer
Put the water and tea bag in a sauce pan and bring to a boil. Turn the heat to low simmer. Add the ginger, turmeric, coconut oil and, if you choose, the agave syrup. Simmer 10 minutes, covered. Turn off heat and let it sit, covered, for 10 more minutes. Remove tea bag and pour tea. If you like, add a splash of vanilla creamer (I use non dairy — usually coconut or soy).