I learned this recipe from Paul Bergner, a renowned herbalist and the father of “vitalism”—a healing modality that focuses on restoring our own body’s vital and healing energy; arming you with fuel to fight off imbalances and disease. This is contrary to modalities that try to fix each symptom, which can be a long, daunting, and unsuccessful process. Gifting and flooding the body with an abundance of nutritive herbs is the cornerstone of vitalism. This tea offers herbs that are exceptionally high in calcium, magnesium, potassium, and iron, as well as those that have a peculiar affinity for women’s reproductive organs.
The tea was formulated to balance the drying/astringent herbs (such as red raspberry leaf or nettles) with moistening herbs (such as licorice).
To reap the medicinal benefits of this infusion, I’m using the classical herbal ratio of 1:30 ratio, which means 1 gram of herbs to 30 ml of water. This recipe is therefore using 33 grams of herbs (which I converted to cups and tablespoons for simplicity) to 1 quart of water.
Feel free to change the ratio of herbs used as you intuitively feel inclined. Do not feel as if the tea is incomplete if you don’t use all the herbs. Please see the precautions listed below for some of the herbs.
- 4½ cups filtered water
- ½ cup oatstraw (Avena sativa)
- ½ cup stinging nettles (Urtica dioica)
- ¼ cup red raspberry leaf (Rubus idaeus)
- ¼ cup peppermint (Mentha piperita)
- ¼ cup marshmallow leaf (Althaea officinalis)
- 1 tablespoon licorice root (Glycyrrhiza glabra)
- 1 tablespoon blackstrap molasses
- In a saucepan, bring the water to a boil.
- Place all the herbs in the Pyrex measuring cup. Pour the boiling water over the herbs, stir, and cover with a silicone or glass lid. Let steep for 2 to 8 hours.
- Use a mesh strainer or cheesecloth (the latter is my preferred method to squeeze all the liquid out) to strain the tea into a pitcher or other glass container. The infusion should produce 1 quart of tea.
- Stir in the molasses and drink 2 cups per day. Store the tea in the refrigerator and drink within 3 days.
Oatstraw: omit if you have Celiac or Crohn’s disease.
Marshmallow: omit if you are taking medications throughout the day. It interferes with medicine absorption and can only be taken 2 hours or more before any medication is ingested.
Licorice: omit if you have hypertension (abnormally high blood pressure)
How can I prepare a dry mix of this tea to keep on hand, to measure and steep the equivalent to make 2 cups a day?
HI Isa, You can just double, triple or more the herbs in the recipe, mix them, and keep them in a glass container, then scoop up what you need, and steep. Remember it is a long steep, so just give yourself a couple hours to really let it steep. I have also made a big batch, and then keep it in the fridge for the week, and use it daily.
I hope that helps! Jen HB Support
Is the black strap molasses important to the recipe, or could I simple substitute it for raw honey? Thank you
Great question! While we haven’t tried this replacement ourselves, you can certainly use a local raw honey in place of the molasses if that is what you have on hand or if you prefer the flavor of honey over molasses. Blackstrap molasses has a higher mineral content than most honeys, which is one of the reasons we love it in this recipe.