Potential Health Benefits of Rooibos
Rooibos tea is made from the leaves and stems of the indigenous South African plant aspalathus linearis. In contrast to tea from the plant camellia sinensis, rooibos is naturally caffeine-free and lower in tannins, which are what give camellia sinensis tea its astringent (mouth-puckering) property. Because rooibos is lower in tannins, its brew is similarly lower in astringency.
Antioxidative activity has also been attributed to rooibos on the basis of its flavonoid content! Often, customers will ask us "Does rooibos have more or fewer antioxidants than tea?" According to the findings in the study "Comparison of the Antioxidant Activity of Rooibos Tea with Green, Oolong and Black Tea" in Food Chemistry, evidence does not point to a clear answer. One method of analysis used in this study found rooibos to have less antioxidant activity than green tea but more than black tea, while another method showed rooibos’ antioxidant activity to be slightly less than that of all tea from the plant camellia sinensis.*
For a detailed listing of scientific, peer-reviewed research relating to the health benefits of rooibos we recommend visiting the South African Rooibos Council website.
*Source: "Comparison of the Antioxidant Activity of Rooibos Tea (Aspalathus linearis) with Green, Oolong and Black tea " by A. Von Gadow et all, Food Chemistry, Volume 60, Issue 1, 1997.