Six Serious Life Lessons from Yoga and Tea

Tea Talk 21Yoga and tea are ancient spiritual disciplines and therapies that work on creating harmony between mind, body and spirit. In the aaaah!… good stretch of the muscles and steeping of the tea leaves in hot water, lies an entire philosophy that is inspiring the world to change the way we live and think.

The principles of yoga are parallel with the art of tea. They both are addictive practices that alter the very way we feel, think, understand and experience life – a life beyond the good and the evil. I believe my tea journey wouldn’t have reached this present if my fifteen years with Ashtanga yoga, hadn’t morphed the confluence of my asanas into something more personal.

Yoga has so much to give us beyond its science of asanas. In the subtle moments of deep self-connection and introspection, it’s transformative powers inspire us to embrace change and grow to new heights. In case you are on a path to achieve modern day enlightenment and are in search of living a more deliberate life, here are six lessons that have helped me trust in the practice and in the answers that arise from it.

1. Alignment – One of the best lessons you can learn from yoga is to master the art of staying calm and not give a F. Yoga emphasises the most on the importance of correct body alignment, to hold an asana and do it correctly. This is a prerequisite for all the good energies to generate and flow, and bring us to a meditative state that we are seeking. Yoga teaches us how to live in harmony with life’s asymmetries, by subconsciously making us understand the significance of our health and well-being.

2. Courage – Off the mat, yoga teaches us our capacity to build strength and withstand life’s obstacles. Asanas are not exercises. They are very subtle methods of manipulating our energy in a certain direction. If practised correctly and mindfully, yoga can break down all the negative thinking patterns, psychological, emotional and physical barriers that inhibit us from thriving and feeling bulletproof.

3. Consciousness – The longest journey is the journey inward. Yoga helps to develop a connection with our soul, and it makes us experience the spiritual energy that is a pathway for higher awakening, consciousness, intuition and healing. Yoga and tea are forms of meditation and they make us realise, that mindfulness does not have to be complicated. Just ending a yoga session by lying down still and deep breathing in Savasana, followed by a cup of tea, simplifies the whole concept of “mindfulness”.

4. Feel less pain – Letting go and moving on is the hardest asana. In yoga, we are taught to “let go” when we are sitting calmly, deep breathing on the mat and even when we are trying to nail a headstand effortlessly. Releasing all the tension and breathing through the noise of it all, is the smoothest take-off. Yoga, just like tea, shows us that we have the power to silence the chaos within. Both the practices help us comprehend the true reality – that just as pain compounds with time, so do positive thoughts.

5. Evolve – Once you get into yoga and tea, you are a student for life. The science of asanas and the history of different kinds and styles, make our bodies limitless. Awakening our senses and opening our minds to receive information is the mantra that creates the “zest” factor in our lives. Yoga teaches us how to open to the world and stay receptive to all its possibilities and opportunities.

6. Self-love  – Yoga makes us sensitive and helps us listen to our body’s messages and emotions. It forms the connection that we are looking for. Right from what we should and shouldn’t eat, how we must deal with toxicity, to serious decisions about what we want and do not want in life – the practice of yoga creates a sacred foundation within ourselves, where there is more acceptance, freedom, love, peace, joy and light. It’s a total upgrade!

Inspired to read more about the uplifting effects of yoga and tea? Here are 5 reasons why Rangsaa is your best post-yoga drink.

Illustration credit: Erika Lourenco

REVIEW – Ceylon Silver Tips by Premier Pearl Tea

base review XDescription of tea
The dry tea is stunning  – unbroken, downy silver and grey needles, with young fresh-green hue. Aroma is an intriguing mix of sweet, earthy and toasty notes. Shape and texture are beautiful and inviting. Buds taste pure and natural.

Infused Tea/Unique Characteristics
The tea brews a mild pale-yellow liquor that’s delicate, clear and bright. Aroma is rich and has a woodland feel. Taste is endearing with vivid but gentle notes.  The top vegetal, toasty flavors, with faint melony and malty undertones, commingle with brilliant grassy, mild-floral, hay-like sweetness. Infusion feels thick in the mouth but doesn’t settle heavily. It coats the mouth effortlessly and has a dry, tannic mouthfeel and a lingering aftertaste – like a white wine.

Infusion
I steeped 1 1/2 tsp of tea in 250 ml glass of pre-boiled water (85C) for 5 mins. After the first steeping, the needles are unfettered. The first infusion is soft, subtle, foresty with exquisite complexity. I chose to steep my second infusion for a longer time and at 10 mins I was stunned with it’s changed personality. The hidden woodsy-nutty characters were at the forefront. The infusion was fuller, rounder and had more depth. I definitely recommend brewing this tea for a longer time, for its eminent flavors to completely bloom and heighten.

I like adventurous teas and this one is fun. From the color of the liquor, the tea seems exceedingly gentle but it’s flavor experiences surprised me. I initially chose to brew my first sample for 3 mins. It was almost colorless yet flavorful. This one is a keeper. It’s personal, quietening and stress relieving. And I feel it will be instantly liked by anyone who has a special heart for delicate teas.

Website – premierpearltea.com

Drinking Tea And The Art Of Doing Nothing

Tea Talk 11AThe Italians have a beautiful concept signifying the pleasantness of inactivity – ‘La Dolce Far Niente’, which roughly translates to ‘the sweetness of doing nothing’.

Well, the concept seems easy as taking a break doing relaxing activities gives us lot of options to chose from. But the challenge here is to cultivate ‘mental silence’, which isn’t just about getting respite from the distractions of office chatter or deadlines. It’s about the real sustained silence that quietens inner as well as outer chatter and takes us beyond the noise. A state that can be easily attained through the ‘Art of Tea Meditation’.

A recent Harvard Business Review states that the busier we are, the more quiet time we need. It emphasises on the need of structured periods of silence as important factors in achieving success. In our modern lives when our day begins running on a treadmill of duties and ends with exhaustion, taking a silent break is a luxury. Tea is the modern day meditation and a simple solution to effortlessly embrace the art of doing nothing and experiencing mental silence.

Tea masters and monks have been practising the ‘art of tea way’ for more than 3,000 years – an art that consists simply of boiling water, preparing tea and drinking it. Embracing the traditional goodness of tea in modern times by upgrading our tea-time can help to reprogram our thoughts, manage the non-stop information flow and cultivate periods of deep silence. It can condition our minds to be more adaptive and responsive to the complex environments in which so many of us now live, work, and lead.

Our lives can be a lot different if we take a deliberate pause by just giving 30 minutes of our day to the process of making our cup of tea. This pause declutters our mind, bringing about a sense of calmness and tranquillity.  You can chose this time to unwind, plan your day, read a book, think about what you love, admire the view from your window or think about nothing at all. You make your tea, absorb yourself in the process, sit and sip with no particular agenda, letting yourself go wherever your mind takes you. You could also use this time to think about what kind of life would be worth living, rather than simply living the life you live.

With each passing day, we feel more tired, hoping for a reboot in the form of a break, a pause from the daily hustle. And this idea usually translates into a quarterly vacation – travelling to a far off land to get away from the madness for a while. But we don’t need to postpone that idea any further because the elusive ‘relaxation’ that we yearn for is not just found in the scenic landscapes of our ideal vacation spots. It exists within each one of us and is ours to claim if we learn to embrace it with a tea lifestyle. So instead of fantasising about that one big vacation, brew your tea, find that perfect spot in the house, and reboot your life with a simple tea meditation.

The world is getting louder. But silence is still accessible. It just takes commitment and creativity to cultivate it.  Make your cup of tea mindfully, take a deep breath, relax and let your brain move away from the abstract and the distant towards the tangible and the near.

5 Reasons Why You Should Add Rangsaa to Your Fitness Regime

Fitness lifestyleIf you’ve wandered along your supermarket’s tea aisle over the past 5 years, you would have noticed a massive multiplication in the breadth and depth of choice in ‘herbal’ options, with mostly mundane and uninspiring flavor innovations.

We at Rangsaa are huge fans of powerful herbs, but were fed up of the weak, dusty flavours that ended up in ‘herbal’ infusions replete with chemicals and artificial substances. We realised there existed a gap in the market for innovative, 100% natural teas that also tasted delicious, loaded with the true power of herbs. A fitness and wellness movement, Rangsaa operates in a unique space. Our work revolves around an overarching aim to discover delicious yet effective ways to harness nature’s power in our teas.

The concept of healthy, nutritious tea is fast changing to go beyond green tea bags. Surprising as it may be, tea is becoming the latest fitness power drink around the world. Fitness blends are now a global trend among fitness enthusiasts, sportsmen, athletes and people into target training. However, the trend is yet to catch up in India.

When you work out, an adequate intake of fluids is essential. A healthy body results from 80% diet and just 20% workout, so being conscious of not just what you eat but also what you drink becomes crucial to your fitness journey. Imagine if your fluids came packed with strengthening and rejuvenating herbs. Rangsaa offers just that, bringing the fitness movement to the health conscious.

Here are 5 reasons why Rangsaa blends are a great addition to a fitness enthusiast’s arsenal:

1. Unadulterated delicious power – Rangsaa blends are the best alternative to chemically loaded and sugary energy drinks. Made with nature’s most powerful botanicals, Rangsaa is packed with vitamins and nutrients that improve stamina, boost vitality and reduce muscle stress. 100% pure and natural, our blends help you experience the power of nature with pure deliciousness.

2. Powerhouse of herbs – Our blends are formulated with superfood herbs like moringa, ginseng, seabuckthorn leaves, gotu kola, cramp bark, Indian gooseberry and other speciality target-focused herbs that help you energise and improve stamina.

3. Naturally sweetened with Stevia – Rangsaa blends are naturally sweet and delicious with no added sugar. Stevia helps fight diabetes, thus making for a great option for diabetic patients looking for a sweet treat.

4. Multi-versatile – Not just a hot cup of tea, Rangsaa blends can be transformed into fitness drinks, smoothies, healthy cocktails etc. Our recipes take tea beyond the usual cup. Perfect for people who love experimenting, our blends are easy to incorporate in your fitness journey. If you want power on-the-go, you can use our fitness tumbler to assist you.

5. No-caffeine option – If you want to stay away from caffeine but still want an energy-booster, our blends are here for you. Our tisanes, which are pure herbal infusions, are caffeine-free and boost stamina naturally. They also offer multiple so you can sip power all day.

When you drink a cup of Rangsaa, you sip in the essence of nature and experience a medley of nutritious, colourful, tasty and aromatic molecules that protect against stress and exhaustion. Whether you hit it hard at the gym, run a 10k to train for a marathon, swing kettlebells at home, sweat it out on the yoga mat or do laps in the pool, Rangsaa is your one-stop fitness drink. Our blends help you energise before your workout, keep you going during your session and help you recover and restore post workout.

At Rangsaa we go back to the basics, turn to nature and bring you tea blends and tisanes that help you energise, elevate and feel amazing even after a thoroughly exhausting session. Whatever be your fitness goals, say goodbye to sugary drinks and switch to a cleaner lifestyle with Rangsaa. Gift yourself a healthier, fitter and better you and experience tea like never before.

5 Ways To Train Your Palate With Rangsaa Tea

Tea Talk 9Rangsaa’s tagline ‘Symphony of Colorful Tea’ reflects the various tasting notes in our blends, which come together to create a beautiful, elaborate musical composition, full of orchestral flavor profiles. There are different tasting notes, depth of flavors, aroma, undertones, complexities and spikes before you get an aftertaste. Every Rangsaa blend is an experience in taste, simplicity and purity, making it a beautiful tea drinking journey, something that you want to keep coming back for.

Indulging in novel ideas and events enriches our understanding of life and enhances the quality of our experiences. We at Rangsaa love trying out new notes, taste and flavour profiles with our tea blends. With the finest organic herbs and high altitude tippy tea leaves, we have created a beautiful symphony of unique flavours and notes, distinguishing our blends from the artificial ones that have proliferated the market today. We want people to experience this colourful symphony with five simple steps. Ask yourself the following questions when drinking our teas:

1. Describe your tea blend – How is the appeal? Examine the appearance of the dry tea leaves and other ingredients in the blend. Are the tea leaves whole or broken? Do you see silver or golden tips? How do the ingredients look? What do they smell like? Examine your tea, studying it for clues and flavours that are about to indulge your senses. Rejoice in the moment.

2. Describe the color of the tea liquor – Watch the leaves infuse and spread a cloud of color in your cup or teapot. Is it amber, crimson, golden, or a different color altogether? How does the color change with steeping time?

3. Describe the aroma – Close your eyes and inhale the rich aroma wafting from the infusion. What does it smell like? What are the hints of flavors that you are experiencing? Is it fresh, exciting, warm, spicy, comforting etc.?

4. Describe the tasting notes – Now, slurp the tea (don’t worry about the loud noises). Spread it all over your tongue and mouth. What flavors, notes, undertones do you detect? What are the top notes? Is there a balance? How is the texture and the finish? Try to describe your experience.

5. Describe the aftertaste – Finally, swallow the tea. Is the finish long or short? Do the flavors dissipate quickly or last for a while in your mouth? What flavors remain? Is the mouthfeel dry or creamy? Do you detect sweetness? You are the taster here. Enjoy every sip.

For a heightened tea experience, we suggest steeping the tea for 5-10 minutes and see how you like your tea, detecting the change in density and depth of flavours, thus allowing the musical notes to resonate.

To learn more about the new flavors that you can experience, please refer to our tea reviews on the website. Our reviews will act as an introduction and reference guide and will also enhance your experience by giving you cues on exploring your blends in different ways.

Train your palate and explore new flavors and nuances with Rangsaa’s premium tea blends and tisanes. Drinking tea is fun and we want you to experience the magic with your Rangsaa journey.

10 Reasons Why You Must Stop Drinking Fizzy Drinks

aerartedartificaldrinksblog-1Who doesn’t love sipping on fizzy, carbonated drinks on occasions ranging from going out with friends or being plain bored at home? However, for all their easy charm, aerated drinks are not all that harmless. Last year, scientists claimed fizzy drinks cause thousands of deaths every year. Not the first time they have come under the scanner, artificial drinks often contain sugar, harmful chemicals and minimal nutritional value. While they still enjoy a wide appeal, we have been warned against their potential harms on numerous occasions.

It is time to switch over to nutritious and natural options from aerated drinks. Let us look at some reasons to quit your fizzy drinking habit:

1. Increased risk of diabetes – The high amount of sugar in artificial drinks skyrockets the blood sugar and causes an insulin reaction in the body. Over time, this can lead to type 2 diabetes or insulin resistance. Between 1990 and 2000, an increase in the consumption of fizzy drinks led to a whopping 130,000 new diabetes cases.

2. Can lead to heart disease – There exists a strong link between heart disease and the consumption of foods with added sugars. Sipping on fizzy drinks can dramatically increase the risk of cardiovascular diseases. Not just this, the artificial sweeteners used in diet beverages are established neurotoxins that are responsible for several behavioral and cognitive problems.

3. Increases risk of cancer – The synthetic chemicals used in the coloring of soft drinks are believed to be carcinogenic and have subsequently been banned in many countries. In addition, diet sodas have artificial sweeteners that are documented carcinogens. Aerated drinks can lead to various kinds of cancer such as prostate cancer in men, breast cancer in women and pancreatic cancer.

4. Obesity – It is no secret that soft drinks have zero nutritional value and make us fat. When you drink fizzy drinks, you confuse your body into thinking it is sugar intake. When it figures out the truth, you instantly develop a craving for the sugar you missed out on! Moreover, sweet sensations promote insulin release, blocking your body’s ability to burn fat.

5. Damages dental health – The high acidity in artificial drinks causes plaque to build up on the teeth and can lead to cavities and gum disease. Long-term consumption of colored drinks causes the same harmful effect.

6. Premature ageing – The phosphates used in artificially sweetened drinks have been found to speed ageing. This doesn’t just mean more wrinkles on your face, but several health complications as well.

7. Dehydration – Because of the high sugar, sodium and caffeine content in artificial drinks, they dehydrate the body and over a long period of time can cause chronic dehydration.

8. Alters your brain – Besides affecting the body, aerated drinks are also found to change the protein levels in the brain, leading to hyperactivity.

9. Can cause early puberty – Consuming sugary drinks every day can lead to incidences of teenage girls hitting their period earlier, consequently increasing their risk of cancer.

10. Taxes your organs – Your heart, liver, brain, digestive tract and kidney work in-sync for optimum functioning of the body. Artifical aerated drinks trigger your organs to react as if they are in a dangerous situation and cause imbalance, which puts your body under a lot of stress. This is very harmful to your health in the long run.

So, the next time you are looking for an energy boost, think about alternative ways before you buy energy drinks. Switch to tea and explore it’s vast flavors and taste options. Find the ones you like. It’s all about going natural, respecting your body and pumping it with nature’s power. Explore Rangsaa blends and kickstart your healthy lifestyle today.

TEA REVIEW – Rangsaa Levitate

levitate-reviewDry leaves
Herbal infusion is a mix of dry cut herbs, floral petals, roots and spice chunks. Appeal is warm, inviting, colorful and zesty. Aroma is fresh, reminiscent of a fruity healthy summer drink – herbal, floral, citrusy with strong essence of spices.

Infused Tea/Unique Characteristics
The leaves brew a light golden-amber color liquor with hue of crimson. The color is delicate and beautiful. The top tropical notes compliment the strong spicy unique undertones, with complex floral and herbaceous hints.  It coats the mouth with spicy, citrusy flavors, leaving behind a creamy, smooth and buttery spicy-sweet finish. The strong spicy characters, with hints of cardamom, are wonderful and pair really well with the natural sweetness of the tea. If you let it sit in your mouth, you can taste the surprising notes that work really well in balancing the flavors, attributing to a fresh, all-new flavor, delicious drink!

Infusion
1 tsp of leaves were infused in 200 ml pre-boiled water (100C) for 10 minutes. Although the infusion looked delicate, it surprised my taste buds with strong blend of flavors and aroma. The second infusion resulted from brewing the tea for 30 minutes. I had it iced and it was yum.

Rangsaa Levitate is a velvet smooth indulgence, pairing rich flavors. It’s relaxing, stimulating and a calming experience, where every sip soaks you in the atmosphere of a spa or a vacation. The journey of flavors is interesting and it makes you happy. Levitate is a delicate and fun tisane that would be really enjoyed during a cold evening and would be even better iced. Add a touch of vodka or gin to easily transform it into a celebration. The possibilities here seem endless.