About Linden and Linden Tea
Linden tea is a herbal tea made from the flowers, inner bark, or leaves of a linden tree—a tall, leafy deciduous tree that is common throughout the U.S., Asia, and Europe. The tree belongs to the genus Tilia, and the two most common species used for tea include the small-leafed European linden, or winter linden (Tilia cordata), and large-leafed linden, or summer linden (Tilia platyphyllos).
Linden tea is also called linden leaf tea or linden flower tea. This tea is popular for its many medicinal uses. In fact, early settlers and Native Americans used this plant to help treat indigestion, headaches, gout, kidney stones, and hysteria.
In this article, you will learn about the nutrition facts, side effects, and health benefits of linden tea. We will also guide you through how to make linden tea with an easy-to-make recipe. Let’s get started…
Linden Tea Nutrition Facts
Linden flower tea benefits are largely due to the high concentration of flavonoids, phytonutrients, and other antioxidants, especially procyanidins, found in the beverage. Although not particularly high in vitamins or minerals, the tea does contain some nutrients, including potassium.
It is important to note that since linden tea is a herbal tea, it is not part of the Camellia sinensis evergreen shrub and therefore doesn’t contain caffeine.
What Are the Benefits of Linden Tea?
Many of the reported linden tea health benefits are associated with its phytonutrients, which have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. Linden tea is also known for its sedative, antispasmodic, stomachic, and diuretic properties.
Many drink linden tea when suffering from anxiety, depression, digestive issues, heart problems, a weak immune system, and muscle or joint disorders. It may also have cancer-preventive properties.
In this section, we will explore the health benefits of linden tea in detail.
1. Relieves Anxiety and Depression
Linden tea contains properties that promote relaxation; therefore, you can use linden tea for anxiety and to help alleviate stress, depression, and sleep problems. Linden tea is able to lower levels of stress hormones like cortisol, which can in turn reduce stress.
In one study published in the Journal of Ethnopharmacology in 2008, researchers found that linden flowers reduced anxious behavior in animals. Another study found that linden tea increased the sedative effect of sleep-inducing drugs in animals. The linden also had a calming effect when taken alone.
2. Treats Digestive Issues
Linden tea has many antispasmodic properties that help it reduce inflammation in the gut; manage an upset stomach; and treat bloating, constipation, diarrhea, gas, cramping, and symptoms of ulcerative colitis and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).
Linden wood is also used for gallbladder disease and liver disease, and the charcoal made from linden wood is used for intestinal disorders.
3. Removes Inflammation
The anti-inflammatory properties in linden tea can help treat various inflammation conditions, including muscle aches and spasms, joint pain, headaches, arthritis, gout, itchy skin, and lower leg wounds caused by poor blood circulation.
Two of the main anti-inflammatory flavonoid glycosides in linden leaf include quercetin-3, 7-O-alpha-dirhamnoside and kaempferol-3,7-O-alpha-dirhamnoside.
4. Reduces Cold and Flu Symptoms
Linden tea has been found to be effective against various strains of yeast and bacteria, and this can help you fight off common cold or flu symptoms such as coughing, a sore throat, a stuffy nose, congestion, and a fever.
Linden contains a sticky substance called mucilage, which can help soothe irritation in the throat or mouth. Linden is also able to reduce mucus production.
5. May Prevent Cancer
Coumarin and quercetin are antioxidants in linden that are able to neutralize free radicals that often lead to cancer. Free radicals cause oxidative stress, inflammation, cellular mutation, and programmed cell death (apoptosis). Antioxidants in linden tea could potentially inhibit cell death and counter cancer cell growth.
6. Promotes Heart Health
What about linden tea for heart problems? There is also a connection between linden tea and blood pressure. When you reduce inflammation in the arteries and blood vessels, this can lower blood pressure and benefit heart health.
Linden tea may also treat a rapid heartbeat; prevent blood clots; and significantly reduce your risk of atherosclerosis, coronary heart disease, strokes, and heart attacks.
How to Make Linden Tea
Linden tea bags or loose leaf linden can be purchased online or at health food stores and grocery stores. You can also make linden tea with fresh linden flowers, bark, or leaves. As a result, you’ll get a strong, sweet, and floral linden tea taste.
Want to know how to make linden tea? The following is an easy-to-make linden tea recipe that can be done right at home:
- 1 or 2 tsp fresh linden flowers, or 1 tsp dried linden flowers
- 1 cup filtered water
- Raw honey, to taste
- Bring the water to a boil in a pot, then add your fresh or dried linden flowers.
- Continue to boil for a minute, and remove from the heat. Steep for a minimum of 10 minutes.
- Strain this mixture and add honey if desired.
Side Effects of Linden Tea
Although it is generally regarded as safe by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and there are several benefits, there are also linden tea side effects that can especially affect those with certain conditions. In general, the daily dosage of linden tea should not exceed two to four grams.
When it comes to linden tea and pregnancy, this tea is not recommended during pregnancy due to the high levels of volatile compounds. The positive effect linden can have on painful menstruation may also lead to premature labor or miscarriages. Breastfeeding mothers should also avoid linden tea.
You may have heard talk of linden tea and heart damage. Frequent use of linden is in fact associated with heart damage. You will also want to avoid linden tea if you have a history of heart disease, due to the cardiotoxic compounds in linden.
In rare cases, linden tea can also lead to mild allergic reactions in the mouth or stomach.
Moreover, linden may reduce how well the body eliminates lithium, which could increase the amount of lithium in the body. This can then lead to severe side effects. You should consult your doctor before using linden if you take lithium. Also, your lithium dose may need to be altered.
Final Thoughts on Linden Tea
Linden tea is made from the flowers, leaves, and bark of the linden tree. This tea is known for its high concentration of flavonoids, phytonutrients, and other antioxidants, like procyanidins.
Consumption of linden tea may help you treat digestive issues, depression, anxiety, heart problems, colds, the flu, and muscle or joint disorders. It could also help you lower your risk of cancer.
That being said, you will want to consult a natural doctor or herbalist with an understanding of herbal remedies like linden. Although there are many linden tea health benefits, the drink should be avoided if you are pregnant, breastfeeding, or have a history of heart disease.
- When to Drink Green Tea for Maximum Benefits
- Osmanthus Tea: Health Benefits and Simple Recipes
- Anise Tea: Nutritional Value, Health Benefits, and Recipes
- Is echinacea tea healthy? Benefits and side effects
Frey, M., “Linden Tea Benefits and Side Effects,” VeryWellFit; https://www.verywellfit.com/linden-tea-benefits-and-side-effects-4163720, updated April 30, 2018.
“Liven Up Your Life with Linden Tea,” Mercola; https://articles.mercola.com/teas/linden-tea.aspx, last accessed August 13, 2018.
Marie, J., “Benefits of Linden Flower Tea,” Livestrong, August 14, 2017; https://www.livestrong.com/article/401394-benefits-of-linden-flower-tea/, last accessed August 13, 2018.
“7 Interesting Benefits of Linden,” Organic Facts; https://www.organicfacts.net/health-benefits/other/linden.html, last accessed August 13, 2018.
“Benefits & Side Effects of Linden Tea,” Organic Facts; https://www.organicfacts.net/health-benefits/herbs-and-spices/linden-tea.html?utm_source=internal&utm_medium=42665&utm_campaign=read-next, last accessed August 13, 2018.
“Linden,” WebMD; https://www.webmd.com/vitamins/ai/ingredientmono-550/linden, last accessed August 13, 2018.
Toker, G., et al., “Flavonoids with antinociceptive and anti-inflammatory activities from the leaves of Tilia argentea (silver linden),” Journal of Ethnopharmacology, Dec.2004; 95(2-3): 393-397, doi: 10.1016/j.jep.2004.08.008.