Beyond Healthy Blueberry Iced Tea
The Jersey Blues are back! New Jersey blueberries are back in season for the month of June. This is the perfect time to make a healthy blueberry iced tea.
Are you having difficulty trying to eat healthy? Eating healthy should not be hard or expensive. But sometimes it is. I walk through the supermarket aisles and I think I need a Ph.D. just to know what I’m buying.
So many questions go through my head. Is this fruit genetically modified? Is it full of pesticides? What country is it from? Do they have safe agricultural practices? Is it organic? Why is organic so much more expensive? And the questions go on and on like that. The more aware I become, the more concerns I have.
I want to buy food – just food. That’s it! I don’t want to buy chemicals or modified food that could possibly harm my health or the health of my family. So I try to buy local from local farmers and I choose organic if I can. I also try to buy food that is in season.
Fortunately for blueberry lovers, New Jersey is renowned for the best blueberries nationwide. It’s all about the terroir, as it is with any naturally grown food. It’s weird that I have to say “naturally grown” but the reality is that some food just isn’t.
I’ll step off my soapbox now.
Let’s talk about those lovely Jersey blueberries, just what makes them so tasty, and how to make a deliciously healthy blueberry iced tea.
New Jersey soil, especially southern New Jersey is responsible for the exceptional taste of New Jersey blueberries. New Jersey ranks second in the nation in blueberry production growing 52 million pounds of berries each year. All thanks to the sandy soil of South Jersey. This soil is just right for these lovelies to flourish.
Blueberries are known for their abundance of robust antioxidants, making them powerful brain boosters. Clinical studies associate blueberries with increased cognitive function, memory improvement and decreased oxidative stress, possibly reducing the risk of Alzheimer’s disease and dementia.
The food you eat can be either the safest and most powerful form of medicine or the slowest form of poison.” – Ann Wigmor
Since blueberries are antioxidant superstars, when combined with black tea and lemon juice, two other antioxidant stars, you’re getting a beverage jam packed with free radical fighting antioxidants!
Measuring & Selecting Blueberries
This recipe calls for one pint of blueberries. One pint of blueberries should fill two dry cup measures. A dry pint is not a measure of weight but a measure of volume, as in cubic inches. This is different from a liquid pint which is a measure of fluid ounces.
Look for blueberries that are plump and fresh looking. They should be blue, black, bluish-black or purple in color. You can refrigerate blueberries for about three days or freeze them by spreading them out on a cookie sheet and once frozen, place them in a freezer storage bag until ready to use.
I hope you enjoy this refreshing blueberry iced tea! It’s fairly simple to make. Just blend the blueberry juice and lemons with fresh brewed iced tea and you’re in for a rich and delicious antioxidant boost.
Beyond Healthy Blueberry Iced Tea
Yield 6-8 glasses
How to make a deliciously healthy blueberry iced tea.
- 1-pint blueberries
- 7 cups water
- 8 heaping teaspoons black loose tea
- 3/4 cup pure cane sugar
- 1/4 cup lemon juice
- Wash blueberries.
- Put all the blueberries in a blender. Add 1 cup of water. Blend together until liquid smooth.
- Bring the remaining 6 cups of water to a boil. Remove from heat.
- Add tea leaves and steep for 10 minutes. I prefer Nilgiri black tea.
- Remove tea leaves.
- Add the sugar to the tea while it’s still hot to dissolve.
- Strain blueberry juice and add. I strained this with a nut milk bag.
- Add the lemon juice.
- Stir all together.
- Cool. Serve over ice and enjoy!
Vitamin A 0%, Vitamin C 15%, Calcium 1%, Iron 1%
Serving Size 8 ounces
Amount Per Serving
% Daily Value
Sodium 10.5 mg
Total Carbohydrates 32.9 g
Dietary Fiber 1.2 g
Sugars 30.1 g
Protein 0.4 g
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Blueberries: Most prevalent nutrients are vitamin K, manganese, resveratrol, anthocyanins, quercetin (an antioxidant) and kaempferol, another antioxidant found to reduce the risk of cancer and cardiovascular disease. These nutrients build bones, helps blood clotting, promotes healthy metabolism of fats and carbohydrates, prevents heart disease and combats inflammation.
These nutrients build bones, helps blood clotting, promotes healthy metabolism of fats and carbohydrates, prevents heart disease and combats inflammation.
Lemons: Lemons are high in vitamin C, folate, potassium, flavonoids called limonoids. Limonins are found in the juice of the and are linked to a decrease in cancer risk. Lemons also act as an antioxidant.
Studies have shown limonin may have an effect on lowering cholesterol.
Vitamin C plays a role in immunity by neutralizing free radicals and stimulating the production of white blood cells. Vitamin C also has cardiovascular benefits by lowering cholesterol, keeping arteries flexible and protecting against free radicals.
The high citric acid in lemons is a deterrent against kidney stone formation.
Black Tea: Tea is high in polyphenols, a potent antioxidant. Antioxidants have proven health benefits to cardiovascular health.
Black tea contains an amino acid called l-theanine, which is unique to tea and has some very interesting effects on the brain. L-theanine increases alpha brain waves inducing a calm and deeply relaxed state. Combined with the caffeine, which is about half the amount found in coffee, the overall effect is a focused calm.
The Top 10 Health Benefits of Tea gives a good overview of all the health benefits derived from tea.
Thanks for reading
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Now I’d love to hear from you. What ways do you make iced tea?
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