History of Yaupon – Lustae

History of Yaupon

Archeological records indicate that Native Americans began drinking Yaupon tea over 8,000 years ago in a place we now call Florida. They had developed an extensive tea trade over 500 years before Europeans even arrived to North America. There are indications that the trade route extended as far as Mexico, where scientist discovered that the Mayans were combining cacao with yaupon to create a sacred ceremonial drink. Indigenous people in the southeast region of the United States drank Yaupon tea to cleanse and purify; not only their body, but their minds as well. This tea was known to provide clarity and energy to whomever consumed it.

As time proceeded, European immigrations spread, and so did the love of Yaupon tea. During the American Revolution, yaupon holly was being grown for tea on colonial farms and there was a booming yaupon tea trade in Europe. Yaupon’s tea rising popularity served as a threat to the British East India company, who was becoming increasingly alarmed by the threat of their continued control of the world’s tea market. Therefore, Britain began actively limiting the amount of American tea sold in Europe. As a result, yaupon’s popularity began to decline overseas. Unfortunately, by the 1800’s, U.S. government policies and immigration were tearing apart Native American communities, and the indigenous people were relocated to lands that were far away from the lands in which yaupon grew. This travesty caused the fundamental knowledge of roasting and brewing yaupon holly to be lost, forgotten, and faded into obscurity for almost a hundred and fifty years. Luckily for us, sooner or later, everything old becomes new again.

What is Yaupon?

Yaupon comes from the naturally caffeinated leaves of the Yaupon Holly tree, in the ilex family, found only in the Southeast United States from Texas to Florida, and north through Virginia. Yaupon is the only naturally caffeinated plant species that grows in the US and most of North America.

It’s astonishing to think that yaupon tea was the drink of choice for thousands of years that was lost and found. This scrumptious tea is a natural source of caffeine provides an energy boost, without the caffeine jitters that can come from coffee. Say goodbye to bitter or over steeped tea. Yaupon contains little to no tannins so you can re-steep your tea multiple times without a change in flavor.

Yaupon contains around 30% less caffeine than coffee, but also serves up a healthy dose of theophylline and theobromine, which complement the caffeine to provide a smooth and jitter-free energy boost with no crash. Like it’s South American cousin, the Yerba Mate, Yaupon has dozens of vitamins, minerals, amino acids, polyphenols and antioxidants to fortify the body and calm the mind.

Yaupon offers all the benefits of tea, coffee, or Yerba Mate, but its grown right here in America. Yaupon isn’t imported from abroad, so it results in a smaller carbon footprint, less stress on the environment, and real jobs and economic opportunities for American farmers and workers.

Potential Health Benefits

  • Rich in Antioxidants that can boost the immune system
  • Reduces Inflammation
  • Helps prevents chronic conditions including: heart disease, cancer, diabetes
  • Supports Brain Function
  • Increases energy and alertness

Ongoing Research

  • A recent study conducted by Texas A&M University identified Yaupon’s anti-inflammatory properties as an inhibitor of colon cancer
  • Ongoing research at Stetson University in Florida has shown evidence that Yaupon Holly extract may cause human Leukemia cells to die off while leaving healthy cells unharmed.

We know the science behind Yaupon’s amazing properties and health benefits, and we’re here to make it your new favorite tea.

Delicious, Naturally Caffeinated, and Locally Grown…Name a better tea? We’ll wait!

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