I’m often asked to review tea-related items and I’m especially delighted when they’re health and wellness related. Recently, I received seven boxes of HELPS teas and slowly, but surely, I’m working my way through them. HELPS began in 1959 with the mission of three generations of the Escudero family being to improve “the health and wellbeing of people.” I’m afraid I won’t be trying them all, as I’m happy to report I don’t have all of the aliments they are purported to address.

Let me start by saying that I really like the boxes. They’re snappy and visually exciting. I felt drawn to read the boxes and enjoyed the simple messages. The tea reminded me of my first introduction to tea, which for those who know my story, was with Traditional Medicinal Teas – Golden Green Tea.

I started with Organic R & R, which is right up my alley. Who wouldn’t want a little Rest and Relaxation? They used organic lemon balm / melissa leaf and organic passion flower, which are both good selections for herbal relaxation remedies. I was delighted by the flavor and enjoyed the whole cup before bed. Truth be told, I had an excellent night’s sleep, but who knows if it was a placebo effect or the herbs? I’m happy to develop a ritual for a while and see how it goes. My next tea selection was Organic Easy Digestion, which contains anise, chamomille, and mint, all organic, of course. Again, the taste was quite nice and easily consumed. I drank it after a dinner, during which I ate too much, and avoided any sense of fullness or discomfort. Time will tell, as I’ll continue to drink it after meals where I’ve overindulged a bit. My final taste test was with their Organic Green Tea. The spearmint keeps the tea tasting quite good, although, to be honest, I prefer my green tea to be whole leaf. However, I’m happy to keep some packets in my purse for when I’m out and about.

I would have to give these products a decided thumbs up. As I do with Traditional Medicinal, I always use two tea bags for “medicinal” purposes, so I suspect I’ll do the same with HELPS. I haven’t seen it at my local store in Hood River or in Portland, but I won’t be surprised to find it coming out to the Pacific Northwest. I love the message on their boxes, which speaks of their company PHARMADUS, whose mission is “to create new and innovative products through research and technology without forgetting the lessons and values learned from previous generations: a love of and devotion to natural herbs and an enduring commitment to health.” My herbalist husband, Sandy, couldn’t have said it better. For those with a variety of complaints, you can try MAKE IT EASY (constipation relief), FOR LOW SUGAR DIETS, which I assume targets those with diabetes, BREATHE, and JUST FOR HER (“feel yourself even during menopause”). An interesting selection and organic to boot. Enjoy.

By the way, HELPS just announced a kids Valentine’s Day card photo contest.  The winner will receive the entire HELPS KIDS teas line.  If you are interested, check out the details on HELPS website.  The contest ends February 16.