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Caji Malit - What Is It And Why Should You Drink It?

Caji Malit - What Is It And Why Should You Drink It?

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ne: 28-05-2019, 19:04:51
 

What is so special about Albanian mountain tea (caj mali)? If you are in Albania for any amount of time, you are likely to come across this drink which is drunk in large quantities both recreationally and therapeutically.

Sideritis also known as ironwort, shepherd’s tea and mountain tea is a genus of flowering plants widely known for their use in herbal medicine as well as an herbal tea. This special tea is generally known as “mountain tea” due to the fact it grows mostly on and around Albania’s many mountainous regions.

This tea consists of select handpicked dried flowers, leaves and stems of the native Sideritis plant which grow wild throughout the mountainous regions of the Balkans. The specific plant is found on rocky slopes at very high elevations (over 1000 meters). According to the researchers, Sideritis genus includes over 150 available species. Not to be confused with regular tea rich in polyphenolsand caffeine, this humble tea has a sweet, floral and earthy flavour and is caffeine-free.

Many years ago, caj male was commonly used to treat wounds –especially those from iron swords or arrows. Nowadays, it is mostly consumed in tea but essential oils made from the plant are used in a variety of herbal medicine and cosmetic products across the whole reigon.

One of the main reasons of ironwort’s popularity has definitely been its wide range of health benefits. Since the antiquity, it was considered as a remedy for colds, aches, allergies, indigestion, respiratory issues and a boost for your immune system. All these claims proved to have some scientific basis; an increasing number of studies have confirmed that mountain tea is packed with flavonoids and antioxidants as well as reducing high blood pressure. Recent studies at the University of Magdeburg argue that not only does Sideritis prevent and treat Alzheimer’s disease but it can also help to slow down osteoporosis.

According to  a study published in 2011 at the “Journal of Ethno-pharmacology”, all Sideritis species plants were shown to have anti-microbial, anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and antispasmodic properties. They were rich in a number of natural antioxidants, including flavonoids, and almost all species also contained essential oils. In addition, according to a 2012 publication of the “Journal of Physiology and Pharmacology” found that extracts made from Sideritis helped lower blood pressure levels while helping blood vessels to relax.

The brewing process is rather simple: you simply need to pour some freshly boiled water in a cup with a couple of mountain tea twigs inside. Excellent with a spoonful of honey, it is also lovely with cinnamon or lemon. Since it’s naturally caffeine-free, it can be enjoyed any time of the day. Fresh, aromatic and flavourful – can be enjoyed either hot or cold.

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