Honeybush or Cyclopia is an indigenous South African shrub with trifoliate tapering leaves and fragrant bright yellow flowers when in full bloom. Belonging to the family of legumes, the Cyclopia species is endemic to the Western and Eastern Cape regions of South Africa.
The indigenous Honeybush (or Heunignbos) was recognised centuries ago for its medicinal qualities and used as an expectorant and anti-spasmodic. Its smooth, fruity, flavour made it all the more popular as a refreshing and tasty tea. Low in tannin and caffeine-free, Honeybush Tea is ideal for children, pregnant women, and adults with heart or digestive problems. As it contains the modified sugar pinitol, Honeybush is also particularly suitable for diabetics. It is believed, though not established, that pinitol may help regulate sugar levels.
Though it is widely referred to as a tea, Honeybush is in fact a herb. The brew made from the dried leaves is strictly speaking a herbal infusion (or tisane) with a distinctive rich colour, flavour and aroma that differentiate it from most other teas.
The phenolic compounds in Honeybush tea, and notably its contents of mangiferin, enrich it with anti-oxidant, anti-inflammatory, and anti-viral properties among others. As polyphenols are anti-mutative, research is underway to establish whether Honeybush has anti-cancer properties. Similarly, the potential of the phytoestrogens in Honeybush to alleviate menopause-related symptoms are being examined. While the tea provides a range of essential minerals (iron, potassium, calcium, zinc, copper, manganese, sodium and magnesium) these exist in amounts that do not affect the vitamin intake of the health-conscious.
It is by virtue of its natural composition that Honeybush requires no sweeteners, additives, colourants or preservatives. It can be enjoyed for its smooth honey flavour without added sugar or milk. Our aim at The Heights Tea Estate is to bring to you this herbal drink in its organic and pure taste and just as rich with the antioxidants and health benefits that it has to offer. For this reason, The Heights Tea Estate takes great care with the cultivation of the plant, its fermentation and production.