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The Gumamela, or scientifically known as Hibiscus rosa-sinensis, is a popular species of

flowering plants cultivated all throughout the Philippines and in tropical countries. Its
species epithet rosa-sinensis literally means Chinese rose. The Hibiscus was named by
Linnaeus in 1753 and the plant belongs to family Malvaceae, It is a typical complete flower
usually studied by students when taking up botany, similar to the dissection of frogs when

studying zoology.

Have you ever stumbled across an unfamiliar word when reading about
vitamins and supplements? Health and wellness can be a complex
adventure. Maybe a new product features ingredients you've never heard
of. Or maybe you just need a reminder about a certain term. When a quick
reference check is needed, visit our Natural Health Glossary for a brief
definition (or a link to more detailed information in our Health
Encyclopedia). Be sure to keep this helpful, easy-to-search resource one
click away: bookmark it!

By Dr. Mercola
Edible flowers are ordinarily associated with haute cuisine and
wedding cakes, but you may have several tasty varieties right in
your own backyard.
Adding flowers to your meals will not only make an ordinary dish
look gourmet, they can be quite flavorful and nutritious.
Historically speaking, many different cultures valued fresh flowers in
their culinary endeavors; rose petals were popular among Asian
Indians, daylily buds often appear in oriental dishes, Romans used
violets, and stuffed squash blossoms were popular in Italian and
Hispanic cultures.1
If you're used to adding fresh herbs to your food, adding in a
sprinkling of fresh flowers is not much different, but there are some
unique guidelines to be aware of.

Flower Power: Are Flowers Good for You?

Flowers are natural plant foods, and like many plant foods in nature
often contain valuable nutrients for your health. For instance,

dandelions contain numerous antioxidant properties and flavonoids,

including FOUR times the beta carotene of broccoli, as well as
lutein, cryptoxanthin and zeaxanthin. They're also a rich source of
vitamins, including folic acid, riboflavin, pyroxidine, niacin, and
vitamins E and C. Other examples include:
Violets contain rutin, a phytochemical with antioxidant and antiinflammatory properties that ay help strengthen capillary walls
Rose petals contain bioflavonoids and antioxidants, as well as
vitamins A, B3, C and E
Nasturtiums contain cancer-fighting lycopene and lutein, a
carotenoid found in vegetables and fruits that is important for
vision health
Lavender contains vitamin A, calcium and iron, and is said to
benefit your central nervous system
Chive blossoms (the purple flower of the chive herb) contain
vitamin C, iron and sulfur, and have traditionally been used to
help support healthy blood pressure levels
Flowers are tiny but they can pack a powerful punch, especially if
they're new to your diet. Introduce them sparingly at first to avoid
any potential digestive upset or allergic reactions. This is especially
important if you have allergies to pollen, as eating flowers may
exacerbate your symptoms. Even high-quality, nutritious edible
flowers can cause an unexpected reaction in some people. Try them
one at a time and in SMALL amounts to see how your body is going
to react.
Hibiscus tea has a vivid pink color thanks to the petals used to brew the
beverage. The brew is often enjoyed as a hot herbal tea or as a refreshing iced

tea. No matter how you choose to drink the tea, it supplies small amounts of
magnesium, potassium and calcium as well as larger doses of other key
Sponsored Link

The most impressive mineral present in hibiscus tea is iron. An 8-ounce serving
of hibiscus tea delivers 20.5 milligrams of iron. That's 114 percent of the 18
milligrams you need for the entire day. Iron is crucial for the formation of red
blood cells, which help your body absorb enough oxygen. The mineral also plays
a role in the function of your immune system and in making fuel for your body.
Without enough iron, you're likely to feel fatigued and weak. Chronic low iron is
called anemia, and the condition can negatively impact how much oxygen you

An 8-ounce serving of hibiscus tea supplies 0.28 milligrams of zinc, which is
about 4 percent of the 8 milligrams you should have as part of your daily diet.
Zinc helps you heal from wounds and promotes a strong immune system. The
mineral helps your blood clot and ensures that your reproductive system
functions properly. You also need zinc so that you're able to smell, taste and see
and so that your thyroid functions normally. A zinc deficiency isn't likely, but
when it occurs, it can cause skin changes, poor wound healing, night blindness
and hair loss.

Hibiscus tea supplies 7 milligrams of phosphorus per 8-ounce serving. That's 1
percent of the 700 milligrams you need on a daily basis. Phosphorus is primarily
present in your bones and teeth and plays an important role in keeping them
strong and healthy. The mineral also helps your body turn fats, carbohydrates
and proteins into useable energy. You also need plenty of phosphorus to help
your nerves, heart and kidneys work properly. Because phosphorus is present in
so many foods, a deficiency is rare.

Considerations and Tips

If you're pregnant or breastfeeding, you shouldn't drink hibiscus tea because it's
an emmenagogue, which means it can cause uterine bleeding. Always ask your
doctor if hibiscus tea is safe for you, particularly if you take any other herbal
supplements or medications. Brew a pot of hibiscus tea and enjoy it as a hot
beverage on cold days. Add ice to the tea and chill it as a refreshing drink during
hot weather. Garnish the tea with a sprig of fresh mint to enhance the flavor.
Add fruit such as oranges to the tea as it steeps. The fruit will add a bit of
sweetness to the drink but will also infuse it with vitamin C and potassium.


U.S. Department of Agriculture: Hibiscus, Tea

University of Maryland Medical Center: Iron

University of Maryland Medical Center: Zinc

Medline Plus: Phosphorus in Diet Hibiscus

Hibiscus powerful medicine

for the metabolic syndrome
5 March, 2013

By Staff Writer
NYR Natural News

The beautiful hibiscus plant, with its brightly coloured

trumpet shaped flowers, brings to mind hot summer days in
exotic places.

Let your imagination free on a tropical holiday and eventually youll find
yourself walking around with a hibiscus flower tucked behind your ear looking
like youve just stepped out of a Gauguin painting.
But the beautiful hibiscus is also a medicinal treasure trove.
Hibiscus Sabdariffa L. (common name Roselle ) is a member of the
Malvaceae, or mallow, family. It originated in Egypt and can now be found
growing in warm places around the world including India, Africa, Sudan,
Jamaica, China, Philippines, and the United States.
All the parts of Hibiscus Sabdariffa L. are used it is traditionally known to be a
laxative, diuretic, anti-bacterial, and because of its high vitamin C content,
antiscorbutic (protects against scurvy) and a good choice when you have a cold
or flu.
Hibiscus tea (also known as sour tea) is tart tasting and rich in antioxidants,
can protect the liver. stimulate the appetite and help reduces fevers and soothe
coughs and soothe and help repair the skin.
The flowers are also used in the production of food, such as yogurts, icecreams and syrups.
The seeds are used in the production of vegetable oil in China, and can be
dried and ground as a coffee substitute. Hibiscus root is edible and used as an
aperitif and tonic in the Philippines. The fibrous part of the plant stem used in
the production of twine and cord known as rosella hemp.
Antioxidant benefits
Scientific interest in the hibiscus plant has grown recently, particularly with
regard to its use in treating the signs and symptoms of metabolic syndrome.
It has been hypothesized that the antioxidant and anti-inflammatory
polyphenolspresent in hibiscus are of benefit in helping to prevent and treat
this condition.

Hibiscus is particularly rich in highly active flavonoids such as gossypetin,

sabdaretine, hibiscetine and anthocyanins.
In 2004 an animal study found that hibiscus flower had the same health
benefits as red wine and tea.
That same year a human study confirmed that hibiscus is effective at lowering
blood pressure in people suffering from hypertension. Further studies have
shown thathibiscus acts like an ACE inhibitor to lower blood pressure.
Other studies have suggested that the antioxidants in hibiscus may have anticancer effects. In one study human gastric carcinoma (AGS) cells proved
highly susceptible to hibiscus extract. Laboratory studies show antioxidantrich hibiscus can promote leukaemia cell death as well.
Hypertension and cholesterol
Another study in 2008 found that drinking hibiscus tea can significantly
reduce high blood pressure in people with type 2 diabetes. The study results
showed the average systolic blood pressure for those drinking hibiscus tea
decreased from 134.8 mmHg at the beginning of the study to 112.7 mmHg at
the end of the study, one month later.
Though not all studies have shown a positive benefit in lowering
cholesterol, many have. For instance, in 2007, a small clinical trial found that
Hibiscus (6 capsules of 500mg hibiscus extract, for a total of 3000 mg each
day) reduced cholesterol by up to 14.4% after just one month. In this study a
lower total daily amount (1500 mg) and a higher total daily amount (4500 mg)
were not as effective as the moderate dose.
In another study of 53 diabetics, mostly women, participants were given either
hibiscus tea or black tea (2 cups a day for 1 month). In the group consuming
hibiscus tea, there was an average 7.6% decrease in total cholesterol, an 8.0%
decrease in LDL (unhealthy) cholesterol, a 14.9% decrease in triglycerides
and a and a 16.7% increase in HDL (healthy) cholesterol.

A large study of 222 patients some with and some without metabolic
syndrome found that a daily dose of 100 mg H. sabdariffa extract powder
taken for one month reduced glucose, total cholesterol and LDL cholesterol
and increased HDL cholesterol.
Animal studies have suggested that hibiscus can blood glucose relative to
control, and to a similar degree as the pharmaceutical drug glibenclamide.
Safe and gentle
Hibiscus is a safe remedy to take with no proven adverse reactions or drug
There is no standardised dose but for addressing cholesterol issues try taking
the equivalent of 1,000 mg dried herb 3 times a day; 1 cup of tea twice a day,
or 100 mg of standardized extract twice a day. For hypertension try 1 cup of
tea twice a day or dried powdered hibiscus extract providing 250 mg
anthocyanins, per day.




Scientific Name(s): Hibiscus sabdariffa L. Family: Malvaceae

Common Name(s): Hibiscus , Jamaica sorrel , karkade
(Egyptian hibiscus tea), karkadi , red sorrel , red tea , rosa de
Jamaica , rosella , roselle , soborodo , sour tea , Zobo drink


The leaves and calyces have been used as food and the
flowers steeped for tea. Hibiscus has been used in folk
medicine as a diuretic and mild laxative, as well as in treating
cancer and cardiac and nerve diseases. Although information
is limited, the potential for hibiscus use in treating hypertension
and cancer, as well as for its lipid-lowering and renal effects,
are being investigated.


Practical Parenting: Common Medical Conditions That May Affect

Your Baby

In trials investigating the hypotensive effect of hibiscus, daily
dosages of dry calyx 10 g (approximately anthocyanin 9.6 mg)
as an infusion in water, and total anthocyanin 250 mg per dose
have been used for 4 weeks.

Contraindications have not been identified.


Documented adverse reactions. Avoid use.

Studies in healthy volunteers have shown altered chloroquine,
acetaminophen, and diclofenac pharmacokinetics. The clinical
effects of these interactions have not been evaluated.

Adverse Reactions
Preparations used in clinical trials were well tolerated.

swanson 100% Certified Organic Hibiscus Flower Tea is delightfully refreshing with a subtle
fruity flavor. Hibiscus is growing in popularity due to recent investigative reports that show
folklore may be supported by scientific research. Enjoy hibiscus flower tea hot or cold, any
time of year. Evidence suggests that hibiscus can make a great addition to your healthy life.
Ingredients: 100% certified organic hibiscus (Hibiscus sabdariffa) (flower).
For hot tea, place one tea bag in a cup. Add water just under the boiling point and steep
two to three minutes. For larger amount, add one tea bag for each cup of water to your
favorite teapot and brew for the same amount of time. Drink two to three cups per day.
To make iced tea, place five tea bags in a one-quart container. Fill with two cups of boiling
water and steep for ten minutes. Add two cups of cold water to container and serve over ice.
Certified Organic by Control Union Certifications, the Netherlands.
Product of Macedonia

Terms and Ingredient Definitions

Nutrition Facts
Serving Size 1 Tea Bag (2 grams)
Servings Per Container 20

Amount Per Serving

% Daily Value*

Calories 0Calories from Fat 0

Total Fat 0 grams


Sodium 0 mg


Total Carbohydrate 0 grams


Protein 0 grams

Not a significant source of

saturated fat, trans fat,
cholesterol, dietary fiber, sugars,
vitamin A, vitamin C, calcium and

*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values
may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

Total Fat
Saturated Fat




Less than

65 grams

80 grams

Less than

20 grams

25 grams

Less than

300 mg

300 mg


Less than

Total Carbohydrate

2,400 mg

2,400 mg

300 grams 375 grams

Dietary Fiber

25 grams

30 grams

Calories per gram:

Fat 9
Carbohydrate 4

Protein 4

.18 lbs

he Surprising Health Benefits

of Hibiscus
July 9th, 2013
By Tori Hudson, N.D.
You may be familiar with hibiscus, known as sour tea in Iran, a delicious and
refreshing summertime drink. However, this pleasant-tasting herb with the deepred color also has beneficial health properties, specifically for those looking to
support cardiovascular health.*

Traditional use

Originally from Angola, hibiscus is now cultivated throughout tropical and

subtropical regions, especially in Sudan, Egypt, Thailand, Mexico, and China.
In Egypt and Sudan, hibiscus is used to help maintain a normal body
temperature, support heart health, and encourage fluid balance.*
North Africans have used hibiscus internally for supporting upper respiratory
health including the throat throat and also use it topically to support skin health
In Europe, hibiscus has been employed to support upper respiratory health,
alleviate occasional constipation, and promote proper circulation.* It is commonly
used in combination with lemon balm and St Johns Wort for restlessness and
occasional difficulty falling asleep.*
Hibiscus is traditionally used for supporting normal blood pressure maintenance
in Iran a use that has been validated in several recent studies.

Approximately 15-30 percent of the hibiscus plant is made up of plant acids,
including citric acid, malic acid, tartaric acid and allo-hydroxycitric acid lactone
i.e. hibiscus acid, which is unique to hibiscus.
Other chemical constituents are many; however, some of the most important
include alkaloids, anthocyanins, and quercetin.

Scientific interest in hibiscus has grown in the last several years, thanks to a
small burst of published research studies especially in regards to cholesterol
and blood pressure maintenance.
1. Cholesterol maintenance
In 2007, a one-month clinical trial tested the effects of hibiscus extract on
cholesterol levels. A total of 42 subjects were randomized to three groups for the
study. Group 1 received one 500-mg capsule 3x daily (1,500 mg/day), Group 2
received two capsules 3x daily (3,000 mg/day), and Group 3 received three
capsules 3x daily (4,500 mg/day). Interestingly, by the fourth week, participants in

both Groups 1 and 2, but not Group 3, experienced a cholesterol maintenance

effect. The optimum dose was 1,000 mg taken 3x daily.
In 2009, another trial studied hibiscuss ability to support cholesterol
maintenance, this time in people concerned with healthy blood sugar levels. Sixty
subjects, mostly women, were given either one cup of hibiscus tea or black tea
twice per day. After one month, hibiscus was able to help maintain total, LDL,
and HDL cholesterol levels as well as triglycerides already within a healthy
range.* Black tea, on the other hand, only impacted HDL levels.
A larger trial, in 222 adults, was published on hibiscus in 2010. The subjects
about a third of whom had metabolic challenges were randomly assigned to
one of three groups: a healthy diet, hibiscus, or a healthy diet plus hibiscus.
Those with metabolic challenges experienced several benefits from hibiscus,
including cholesterol maintenance. Similar effects on supporting normal blood
sugar were also noted.*
Another 2010 study in 69 subjects found that hibiscus extract (1,000 mg/day) did
not have a cholesterol maintenance effect compared to placebo. One wonders
why the results of this study were negative, while the three studies mentioned
above showed positive results. It could be because different preparations tea,
powdered flowers, and various extracts were used in each study. With more
consistent product selection and dosages used in larger randomized trials, we
would hope that this would clarify the best intervention to use.
2. Blood pressure maintenance
In 2007, a randomized, controlled, double-blind study researched hibiscuss
blood pressure maintenance capacity. Participants received either a dried
powdered hibiscus extract, containing a total of 250 mg anthocyanins, or an
alternate intervention. Hibiscus extract was able to maintain blood pressure levels
already within a healthy range, but importantly, it did not alter blood potassium
levels, nor did it affect salt-water balance.*
A trial comparing hibiscus to black tea among people seeking to support healthy
blood sugar levels was published in 2009. Subjects were randomly assigned to

drink one cup of hibiscus tea or black tea two times per day for one month.
Hibiscus tea demonstrated a maintenance effect on systolic (but not diastolic)
blood pressure, while black tea did not.*
A Cochrane review of hibiscuss effects on blood pressure published in 2010
resulted in five articles. The reviewers included randomized controlled trials of
three to 12 weeks in duration that compared hibiscus to either placebo or no
intervention at all. All five of these studies found hibiscus had a blood pressure
maintenance effect.

Safety and Dosage

The safety profile of hibiscus is excellent, with no proven adverse reactions.
It is difficult to clarify dosing recommendations when different products are used
in different studies. However, positive studies used the following dosages:
For cholesterol maintenance: 1,000 mg dried herb 3x daily, one cup of hibiscus
tea 2x daily, or 100 mg of standardized extract 2x daily
For blood pressure maintenance: One cup of hibiscus tea 2x daily or dried
powdered hibiscus extract providing 250 mg anthocyanins per day
2 Hibiscus Liquid Phyto-Caps are the equivalent of an 8oz cup of Hibiscus Tea.

It is exciting to see the use of this simple, safe plant evolve from home beverage
to medicinal utilization for such common health support such as blood pressure
and cholesterol maintenance.
Hibiscus helps maintain cholesterol levels that are already within a healthy
Hibiscus helps maintain blood pressure levels that are already within a healthy

* This statement has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug
Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or
prevent any disease
Find out more about Gaia Herbs Hibiscus Flower

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Kuriyan R, Kumar D, Rajendran R, Kurpad A. . BMC Compl and Alt Med
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Mozaffari-Khosravi H, Jalali-Khanabadi B, Afkhami-Ardekani M, et al J Human