Decoction: A concentrated tea made by boiling, then steeping botanicals for a period of time. Usually decoctions are made with tough plant parts, like root and bark, to ensure plant compounds are extracted into the water.
Belén and Susanna are heading to their school’s annual cross-country meet this morning. The day before yesterday, Belén came hope with her nose plugged up tight and complained about not feeling well. Since Belén has been looking forward to this long-distance race all year, I tried my best to come up with a cure. This tea, besides sleep and a chest/back rub-down with herbal salve, was the third component of my home remedy.
- handful of plump rosehips
- 2 1/2 ish cups of water
Boil rosehips in water for about 2o minutes. Once the water boils, keep covered and simmer. Turn heat off and let rosehips steep for five minutes, or up to 12 hours.
I gave Belén a half cup to drink before bed, which she downed easily, and then another half cup the next morning. The morning cup was not tolerated nearly as well as the cup the night before, even though I sweetened both drinks with a generous amount of honey. Steeping the hips all night makes the drink much more potent and strong tasting.
But, I made her drink it… well, most of it. Here is why:
Rosehips contain vitamins A,B, E and K and are one of the best natural sources of vitamin C; they are effective for cold and flu prevention and treatment. Interestingly, they are also anti-spasmodic (prevent spasms and cramps), anti-bacterial, high in iron and other minerals, and contain bioflavonoids contributing to heart health. Some sources claim rosehip tea works as well as cranberry juice for dealing with urinary tract infections.
Here’s to rose hips and running!
PS. Just writing that last line makes me feel active and healthy. I like wearing my running tights around the house (if not actually running in them), and I enjoy the rosehip tea— I think that must count for something.