10 Alternatives to Tea- Best Known Alternatives For Camellia sinensis
Do you like to drink Tea?
A lot of you probably answered with a Yes! As a Nepali, most of our days start with a cup of Tea – Nepali style or Black, along with a few pieces of bread or biscuit. That being said, quite a few of you may be shaking your head in a “Nope” motion.
But what do you drink besides tea? While a few of us may be familiar with the alternatives to tea, for a lot of us, tea is the one and only drink that is fit to start the morning.
Well, there are quite a lot of alternatives to tea. While some of them are rather obvious, a lot of them are not.
What is a Tea?
Tea is not a specific term but rather a general term used for any drinks that are made from pouring hot water or boiling it with leaves or roots of plants. When most of us talk about tea, we generally refer to the tea from the plant Camellia Sinensis as it is locally available in the Nepalese market. So when we say “tea” without anything added in this article we will be referring to Tea from Camellia Sinensis.
That being cleared let’s look at 10 alternatives to Tea that you can find in the Nepalese Market.
This one is somewhat of a default choice for those who don’t drink tea. Coffee feels like just an extreme form of the tea – be it in flavor or the effect. We all know how coffee is filled with caffeine and helps to keep us awake – which is one of the main reasons why people working late hours use coffee as their default drink.
While the effect of the coffee is undeniable so is its taste. One of the main reasons why people refrain themselves from drinking coffee is that it is bitter- sometimes a bit too much. Besides the extreme taste, you can overdose on coffee as well which can cause nausea and insomnia. So while coffee is indeed one of the best alternatives to tea, you should keep its effects in mind.
2) Lemon Water
Lemon water is one of the most underrated alternatives to tea. This is a rather simple drink that involves just three ingredients – lemon juice, sweetener (usually sugar or honey), and water. To make this, all you need to do is mix water with lemon juice and some sweetener. The water can be hot or cold depending on your choice.
While this drink doesn’t have the kick of the caffeine that you will find in tea or coffee, it still is a great way to freshen up. Instead, the sourness of the lemon combined with the energy from the sweetener will do the job of caffeine just fine. Another plus point of this alternative to tea is that there are virtually no side effects. Along with that, there are virtually no restrictions on when you can drink this.
While tea and coffee may not be appropriate in summer-mid noon, chilled lemon water is just fine.
3) Chamomile Tea
While almost all of us knew about coffee and lemon tea, chamomile tea is somewhat of unheard alternative to tea. Despite this, there are still quite a large number of chamomile tea drinkers in Nepal.
For those who are not aware, chamomile tea is made by boiling the chamomile flower and is wildly known for its health benefits including its aid in helping with the misaligned menstrual cycle, stomach burn, and, insomnia. However, the effectiveness of this alternative to tea in health remains to be clinically verified. Ignoring the health benefits, this drink is a good alternative purely based on the flavor alone. Chamomile has an innate subtle sweetness and sourness in it.
This means that chamomile tea subtly tastes like lemon water. That being said, this tea is a bit hard to get and can be a bit expensive.
4) Ginger Tea
Ginger is an herb that we all have in our kitchen. While this drink is technically a Tea, we don’t see this drink like one. For us, tea is something that is bitter, has a darker color, and gives us the “awakeness” effect. But although Ginger Tea does not give us that awakeness effect, it sure does help us to freshen up and is actually better than regular tea in a lot of ways.
As a lot of you know, ginger has a lot of health benefits. It helps us with colds, aids in easing blood pressure, helps us improve our lung health, etc. On top of that, the flavor of this tea is really good as well, especially when taken with a few drops of Honey. So yes, Ginger Tea is one of the best alternatives to tea and a well-known one at that.
5) Peppermint Tea
Peppermint Tea falls into the same category as Ginger Tea. We don’t see peppermint tea as a Tea. But that being said, it is still technically a tea and a great alternative to our regular one since we are boiling leaves in a water.
Peppermint Tea has a wide range of health benefits as well since peppermint is known for aiding in nervousness, depression-induced anxiety, diarrhea, etc. And just like Ginger Tea, it tastes great when drunk with honey. For those who are still confused about what a Peppermint is, it is called Pudina (पुदीना)in Nepali.
So just like Ginger Tea, Peppermint Tea is one of the best alternatives to tea.
6) Coconut Water
This may come off as a weird alternative for tea for a lot of us. Let’s be honest not a lot of people drink coconut water in general. But keeping the number of people who drink this beverage aside, if we are to look purely at its taste and benefits, you will find that it is indeed a great alternative.
Not only does it have a ton of health benefits, if chilled properly, it also becomes one of the perfect alternatives to tea in the summer. While Coconut water is not the best of drinks in the winter, it sure is one of the best ones for the summer. Coconut Water is, after all, known as the fluid of life as it is filled with electrolytes and pottassium.
7) Turmeric Tea
Turmeric Tea is something that a lot of us drink in the mornings without knowing that it is Tea. For those who are confused about what this is, it’s Besar Pani – one of the most popular drinks in Nepal. Yes, it technically is a Tea since this Besar Pani is just a drink where the root of a plant is boiled.
Needless to say, Turmeric Tea has a lot of health benefits such as improving the immune system and helping us fight against colds. This makes this drink one of the best alternatives to tea; especially for the winters.
8) Green Tea
This is the tea that can apparently help us to lose weight, improve our digestive systems, clean our skin and improve our immune system. While these calms are indeed true, at least to some extent, it is not what this tea is best known for.
Green Tea is best known for its awful taste because of its bitterness. However, there are multiple types and variations of green tea, such as Mint Green Tea and Honey Lemon Green Tea that tastes great. What’s even better is that these variations lack caffeine.
But if you want all the health benefits of green tea along with caffeine, you can get the general one. It is made from the same plant as our regular Black tea minus the process of withering and oxidation. So yes, green tea is the perfect alternative to tea since they are virtually the same but with more types and variations.
9) Orange Juice
Orange Juice is one of those well-known alternatives to Tea that a lot of people know about but are afraid to buy. A lot of us see Orange juice as something that only those with high income can buy. But it is not as expensive as many people think. You can buy a liter of Orange juice by spending less than 250 Rupees.
While this is indeed expensive than tea, you have to remember that as long as the package is sealed properly, this single liter can last for a few weeks even after being opened. On top of that, orange juice has all the health benefits of a fruit minus the caffeine.
This is one of the most obvious alternatives to Tea. In fact, Milk is one of the key components of Nepali Style Tea and is the recommended drink for children. That being said, a lot of people outgrow milk as soon as they become teenagers. But many people still drink it well into adulthood.
Regardless of if people outgrow Milk or not, it cannot be denied that it is one of the best alternatives to Tea. Not only does it have a whole sleuth of health benefits, but it is also tasty as well. If you don’t like the taste of the Milk you can easily modify it.
The gist of this entire article is that “We are not limited to Tea” when it comes to our morning fresheners. We have a lot of options on what to drink as our morning drink. While some of these are somewhat expensive and a bit hard to get, a lot of these alternatives are rather easy to make and get.
As a side note for those who want to try Chamomile Tea or Green Tea, you can find them at your Nearest Kiosk or Tea Speciality Shop. These shops are usually located at heritage sites and major “Chowk” all around Nepal.
Hope you found this helpful and interesting. If you have any suggestions for us, do let us know in the comments below. And as always, thank you for reading till the end.
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