Apples and peanut butter, avocado and egg, hummus and pita…some healthy mainstays are just better together. But green tea and turmeric tea, while both uber-popular along the wellness set, have traditionally been enjoyed, well, separately.
But this is 2019. People want whatever they’re eating to multitask just like they do. One at a time? Puh-lease. So maybe it’s not all that surprising that green turmeric tea (aka green tea with turmeric) is a trending healthy sip, named by Pinterest as a rising trend in December 2019, with searches up 100 percent year over year.
Pinterest being Pinterest, you can of course search for ways to make your own green turmeric tea at home, souped up with other healthy ingredients like lemon, mint, or cinnamon. Or, you can turn to one of the many tea brands that have already done the hard work for you, so all you need to do is prep some hot water and drop a tea bag in your mug.
Here, a registered dietitian weighs in on the growing popularity of green turmeric tea, giving her verdict on if it’s healthy or hype. Plus, see first-hand the brands bringing it to the masses.
The health benefits of both green tea and turmeric tea (also called golden milk, when made with alt-milk instead of water) are preached widely and often by wellness experts. Registered dietitian Melissa Mitri, RD, says green tea is full of antioxidants and is linked to better brain health. “Turmeric tea may also play a role in brain health and reducing the risk of dementia,” she says, adding that it’s also been linked to reducing inflammation, boosting the immune system, and lowering cholesterol levels.
There’s no argument that both teas benefit the body. A more prescient question is the effect of combining the two. According to Mitri, this is one trend that isn’t just a gimmick; there’s actually something to it. “Adding turmeric to green tea may help to boost the antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects [of both],” she says. Basically, because anti-inflammatory turmeric is also high in antioxidants, she explains that it adds to green tea’s existing benefits while also bringing along its own unique perks.
Combining the two super ingredients doesn’t decrease their efficiency in any way, but Mitri says there are a couple factors to keep in mind. “If you have diabetes or are on blood thinners, speak to your doctor before consuming turmeric green tea,” she says. “Turmeric may lower blood sugar levels, especially in those that are already on insulin. Turmeric may also naturally thin your blood and so may not be safe to consume when taking blood thinners.” But for the general public, she gives this tea the green light.
Here are all the other amazing things turmeric can do for your bod:
If green turmeric tea sounds like something you’d be into, you definitely have several options to choose from. The Republic of Tea has actually been selling a turmeric ginger green tea ($13) for 10 years, making it one of, if not *the* first. “This deliciously, spicy blend was inspired by the bold flavors and ancient health benefits of the ingredients, combined into one cup,” says Kristina Richens, the brand’s minister of enlightenment. Besides the two primary ingredients, the blend also includes ginger and cinnamon, which Richens says was included to give a bolder taste profile.
Pukka Herbs, a tea line beloved in the wellness world, also has a green turmeric tea ($15 for three boxes). Instead of ginger and cinnamon, it includes lemon for a bright burst of citrus. “Lemon lends this tea a fresh and uplifting taste, perfectly complementing the earthy flavor from turmeric and slight bitterness from green tea,” says Pukka Herbs’ herbal director, Euan MacLennan.
There are also several matcha turmeric teas on the market, including one from tea giant Bigelow ($16 for six boxes). Matcha is also made from dried green tea leaves, but is even more potent than green tea and with a higher caffeine content; if you’re looking for a healthy drink to help you focus and power through the workday, this might be your best bet.
Watch the video below to learn more about the difference between matcha and green tea:
DavidsTea also sells a matcha turmeric tea ($18 for two ounces), which also includes a hint of sweetness from coconut water powder (yes, you read that last part right). “The earthy flavor of turmeric and the characteristic grassy taste of matcha is balanced by a hint of creamy-sweetness that comes from this ingredient. It’s made by freeze-drying coconut water and then milling it into a fine-ground powder,” says Nadia De La Vega, DavidsTea head of tea content. She also says that this tea should be made just as you would regular matcha by whisking it into hot water. “By grinding the turmeric and adding it to matcha you’re actually ingesting both the whole leaf and the spices—it’s a double whammy,” she says.
Golde‘s matcha turmeric tea ($30 for 4.2 ounces) also has a slightly sweet taste, thanks to the inclusion of coconut milk powder, cardamom, cinnamon, and ginger. It also has black pepper, which is included because it slows down the rate the body metabolizes both matcha and turmeric, so you get even more of the healing properties.
The great part about green turmeric tea rising in popularity is that the ready-made options have become widely available, making it easy to find and try for yourself. As with anything you buy with the intention of benefitting your body, it’s best to do a little research before you shell out, making sure other ingredients (like sugar) aren’t being snuck into an otherwise healthy tea. But with that in mind, this is one *golden* healthy trend your health will benefit from.