Thursday, 2 April 2015

Mirabilia olive leaf tea review

I don't think I've ever reviewed a tea before, then in the space of a few weeks, I have three wonderful tea discoveries to share with you! They're all very different, so I hope that there will be a tea to suit everyone. I'm going to start the tea reviews rolling with this delicious olive leaf tea from Mirabilia.

When Mirabilia olive leaf tea sent me some of their delicious tea to sample, I was super excited! My Mum had brought me some olive leaf tea a few years ago and I enjoyed its light taste, but really had no idea of its health benefits. I drink a lot of caffeine free alternatives to green tea, and many of them rival the antioxidant properties of green tea, such as hibiscus or red bush, but somehow olive leaf had passed me by. When I  read through the information that they sent with the tea, and found out the many benefits, I couldn't wait to start drinking it.

Mirabillia olive leaf tea is made from organic green olive leafs. Bimbi and Kim set up their business in Italy believing wholeheartedly in a local sustainable approach to producing the tea. I am a huge believer in using local foods wherever possible so this was music to my ears.

As some of you who have watched my talks and demos will know, when I first started living the wholefoods and raw foods life I embraced the exotic, weird and wonderful worlds of superfoods with passion and wonder. But over the years I began to realise that we have the most amazing and powerful superfoods right here in the UK and also closer to home in Europe. Where I could, I started making changes in our diet, replacing more exotic foods with local alternatives and foraging for wild foods. Knowing that I am doing my bit for the environment is a great thing. I'm not saying never eat any exotic foods (I cannot give up chocolate and bananas just yet!), but it does make sense to include as many local foods as possible. For as well as the environment to think about, we have our health to consider, and the foods grown closer to home, which are more climate appropriate, tend to be better suited to us and better at keeping us in balance.

About the amazing Mirabillia Tea:

“ Our team of pickers, all local ladies of a certain age, are amazingly enthusiastic about their work. They can remember their grandmothers talking about the benefits of olive leaf tea and are thrilled to be part of this revival of local culture and tradition. Everyone involved in this project is proud to be taking part, seeing it not only as a positive benefit to the region but also as a fun and satisfying way of working together on the land

Not only the tea, hand-picked in our organic groves, but also the packaging, the labels and bags, even the machine that helps weigh and pack the tea, have all been locally sourced as we have an unswerving commitment to the area and to the community.”

How awesome is that? The more I looked into the information they had sent me and from what I read on their website, the more I was excited by it's potential health benefits. Olive leaf tea has been traditionally used in Italy for many generations and studies have shown that it could be beneficial for blood pressure and weight loss, is anti-viral, anti-fungal rich in vitamin C and high in antioxidants. There are no known side effects and it is safe for all the family.

Here is another great quote from their website:

"Oleuropein is active against bacteria and insect pests, thus protecting the olive tree. This property has also been found to help protect humans too. European researchers discovered that oleuropein was effective at lowering blood pressure as well as increasing blood flow.
Research conducted in the late 1960's by scientists at major pharmaceutical company Upjohn (now Pfizer ) showed that an active ingredient from olive leaf tea called elenolic acid was very effective at inhibiting viruses from growing, including those associated with the common cold of humans ( the "Rhinovirus" family)"

So what does it taste like?
Delicious! It has a very mild slightly "olivey" flavour, and a butter-like quality to it, making it very smooth on the palate. I imagine that this tea is just as tasty served chilled as it is hot and could be used as a base in cooking too.

How do you prepare it?
To prepare the tea, simply steep a pinch in some boiled water for around 5 minutes to get the maximum benefits. And that's it! I serve mine with a wedge of lemon in it and it's super refreshing that way, but it works amazingly well as the base of a nutritious hot chocolate elixir too!

I am a huge fan of making hot chocolate elixirs, as a delicious and nutritious way to boost my nutrient intake. My elixirs have evolved over the years from containing exotic superfood powders and herbs, to making use of more local ingredients such as beetroot powder and rosehip. Last Saturday, I thought I'd give olive leaf tea a go as my elixir base for one of my demos at Vegfest in Brighton. I usually use redbush tea, which is a fabulous tea for all the family and full of antioxidants, but I wanted to see if I could make this elixir using this delicious tea. It worked perfectly - I am excited to have another tea that I can use in the mix, and it's great to know the addition of olive leaf tea takes this elixir to a whole new level health-wise.

I will definitely be buying this tea and making it a staple in our home. If you are interested in purchasing this tea, all the information, as well as where to buy it can be found on their website!