Eucalyptus is a tree of the myrtaceae family, within which there are 700 species. Traditionally, it is used to relieve congestion from colds, but this is not the only benefit it can offer us.
Eucalyptus essential oils stand out for their intense aromas and their health properties. It is used as an ingredient in ointments, pills, syrups, candies… Today we will focus on the properties of eucalyptus infusion.
Health properties of eucalyptus infusion
Although it is not a common infusion, when you read all the health benefits it has, you will not hesitate to have eucalyptus always ready in your cupboard.
Eucalyptus leaves are rich in antioxidants (just like those in tea and rooibos), specifically flavonoids. These substances prevent oxidative stress and thus protect the body from free radical damage.
The main flavonoids present in eucalyptus are catechins, luteolin, kaempferol, phloretin and quercetin, substances that various studies have indicated as protective against cardiovascular diseases and dementia, among others.
Decongestant and expectorant properties
Surely, you have ever heard a grandmother say that for a cold there is nothing better than vapors with eucalyptus. And of course there is reason in this statement.
Various investigations have proven that eucalyptus has expectorant properties that help eliminate mucus, as well as decongestant properties that relieve different respiratory problems, such as flu, colds, congestion, and even bronchitis. For these reasons and for its anti-inflammatory effects, eucalyptus is on our list of infusions for the throat.
Eucalyptus leaves are rich in cineole and limonene, two substances with proven anti-inflammatory action. For this reason, eucalyptus infusion is used in the case of muscle and joint pain, arthritis, osteoarthritis and other diseases that cause swelling and inflammation.
Research confirmed that eucalyptus vapors improve congestion caused by sinusitis. So, don’t hesitate, drink a piping hot cup of eucalyptus infusion and enjoy smelling it. Not only will you enjoy it in the mouth, but its vapor will help decongest your nose.
Drinking an infusion of eucalyptus may be what you need to get rid of bad breath. Its antimicrobial action eliminates germs, thus combating those that cause the unpleasant odour.
Likewise, natural medicine recommends it to reduce the presence of dental plaque as well as the germs that cause gingivitis.
Although the data is inconclusive, it is believed that the eucalyptol present in eucalyptus tea might thin mucus in those with asthma.
Important note: although it is circulating on social networks that both eucalyptus oil and its infusion would be used to treat the infection caused by Covid-19, there is no scientific research to support this information. In the presence of symptoms, see your doctor immediately.
The eucalyptus tree
Originally from Australia, eucalyptus trees are perennial trees that can reach 60 meters in height, although some evidence indicates that, in the past, there were eucalyptus trees that were even 150 meters tall.
Considered as medicinal plants, you can recognize them by their thin trunks with light brown bark and their oval leaves, grayish when young and elongated and bluish-green when mature. If there is something that distinguishes this tree from others, it is its characteristic aroma. In spring, white flowers appear that are grouped in inflorescences.
Although, as we already mentioned, there are many different varieties, the most famous are Eucalyptus globulus, Eucalyptus camaldulensis or red eucalyptus, Eucalyptus deglupta or rainbow and Eucalyptus gunnii or cider eucalyptus.
It is a very beautiful tree that is also used as an ornamental plant. Now, to have it in the garden it is necessary to consider that its roots grow a lot; therefore, it is essential to plant it at least 10 meters from houses, soils and pipes.
It needs direct sun and is suitable for all kinds of soils, although it prefers those that are not constantly wet.
It does not require too much care other than watering (about 3 times a week in summer and 1 in winter) and pruning at the end of winter to remove dry, diseased or broken branches.
How to prepare an infusion of eucalyptus
You can buy eucalyptus infusion sachets at the supermarket or at your trusted herbalist. Also, it is possible to prepare the infusion with its leaves or flowers, previously well washed.
Next, we share with you the best recipe for you to prepare a comforting cup of eucalyptus infusion at home.
- 20 g of eucalyptus leaves, preferably dried, although they can also be used fresh
- 1 cup of water
- Optional: Honey
- Bring the water to a boil and when it breaks the boil, lower the heat.
- Incorporate the eucalyptus leaves, previously washed.
- Let infuse 4 minutes and strain.
- Sweeten with honey if you wish.
If you have flowers, do the same procedure. You will obtain a refreshing infusion but with a more floral and delicate flavor than when using the leaves.
Are you already starting to think where have you seen a eucalyptus tree? We warn you that after knowing its benefits you could not resist its infusion. Now all that remains is to prepare it and benefit from its properties!