The Kaki or Japanese Persimmon is an edible fruit native to Japan. The Kaki tree is medium-sized and belongs to the Ebenaceae family. It has a rounded crown and grows to about fifty feet tall. In the spring, fragrant flowers blossom and the leaves come out yellowish-green. The leaves mature throughout the summer to a glossy green and then turn gold to red in fall.
The leaves of the Kaki tree are used in medicinal teas, as is the fruit. Historically it was said to solve headaches, back pains, and foot aches, but more recent scientific studies are demonstrating a whole host of benefits. Lately, it has been shown to have positive effects on diabetes, cancer, and respiratory health among others.
In the Nara, Japan, Kaki leaves are used to wrap sushi in the famous Japanese dish called Kaki No Ha Zushi. Legend states that the dish came from a story from the Edo era (1603–1867) about a fisherman from the Wakayama prefecture that was suffering from paying high taxes to the government. He wrapped his sushi in Persimmon leaves to sell in order to pay off his tax, and when he went to sell his sushi, there was a summer festival in the village. Everyone at the festival liked his sushi because Kaki No Ha Zushi could last for many hours during the hot summer days because of the leaves preserving effect. His sushi became famous outside of Nara and can now be seen at kiosks in train stations, in bento boxes, and in some restaurants in Japan.
This tea is made from the leaves of the Hiramu Mutsu variety of the Kaki Persimmon tree, native to the Wakayama Prefecture of Japan. The freshly picked leaves are prepared by being cut into strips in the traditional tanzaku-giri (短冊きり) style for optimal brewing. Kakinoha Herbal Tea is used in traditional Japanese medicine to help reduce symptoms of inflammation and to boost the immune system. Kaki leaves are high in natural antihistamines, fibre, vitamin C, amino acids, and magnesium, as well as tannins, which help digestion.
HEALTH BENEFITS OF KAKINOHA HERBAL TEA
1Immunity Booster The vitamin C of kakinoha helps with the production of white blood cells which act as the protective shield against bacterial, viral and toxic elements, strengthening your immunity power. The antioxidant properties also contribute towards improving the overall health.
2Aids in Weight Loss Kakinoha tea is thought to act as a great weight loss supplement, due to the presence of phenolic compounds and fibre in the leaves making the body get rid of unnecessary fat.
3Alleviates Fluid Retention Betulinic acid, as found in kakinoha is useful for water retention or oedema. Through its anti-edematous properties, this compound takes out the edema causing excess fluids from our body.
4Reduces Allergic Reaction to Pollen Kakinoha tea is enriched with Astralgin and other anti-allergic flavonoids which avert the histamine release and diminish the chance of allergy and inflammation.
5Supports Healthy Digestion Like the fruit, the leaves are also rich in fibre, which helps digestion of food by stimulating the peristaltic motion as well as helping in gastric and digestive juice secretion. The tannins in kakinoha also help rebalance the gut microbiota. Therefore kakinoha tea may also prove beneficial in keeping digestive issues like acid reflux and gastritis at bay.
6Reduces Blood Pressure Flavonoids found in kakinoha can lower the activity of angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE), similar to several blood-pressure-lowering drugs. The bioflavonoid, like rutin and potassium found in kakinoha, acts as a vasodilating agent that helps loosen up or widening the arteries so that the blood flow remains smooth, preventing arteriosclerosis.
7Controls skin’s Melanin Levels, Evens Skin Tone & Lidhtens Dark Spots The antioxidant properties of kakinoha and its high levels of vitamin C also make it a vital molecule for skin health. We often associate vitamin C with our ability to fight colds and rarely make the connection that it works its magic by boosting our natural collagen supply, as well as maintaining bone density and general health. It also helps deoxidise and breakdown melanin, the natural pigmentation we get in our skin from tanning or aging. It’s the sunny vitamin that brightens things up and helps give you truly natural and glowing skin. Japanese women constantly take vitamin C through food, supplements, drinks, fruit and vegetables, and cosmetic products. According to Japan’s “Longevity” magazine, drinking kakinoha tea can prevent melanoma as well.
- Controls skin’s melanin levels
- Evens skin tone and lightens dark spots
- Boosts collagen production
- Relieves itchiness and inflammation
- Alleviates fluid retention (oedema)
- Promotes immunity against flu and colds
- Reduces blood pressure
- Supports overall immune system
- Increases metabolism