The science of why Rooibos is good for you

Ongoing research emphasises the health benefits of the unique South African shrub Rooibos:

People can absorb the active compounds in Rooibos

  • People are able to metabolise (break down) the key antioxidants in Rooibos - aspalathin and nothofagin - but can also absorb un-metabolised aspalathin into the bloodstream. This proof of the bioavailability of Rooibos helps to explain its health-promoting role (Food Chemistry, 2011).
  • The antioxidants in Rooibos measurably elevate the antioxidant levels in blood plasma in people, thereby boosting the body's internal defense systems against disease (Food Chemistry, 2010).
Rooibos is safe to drink and does not affect the iron levels in the blood
  • Rooibos is safe to use. Drinking six cups a day for six weeks has no negative effects on the liver or kidney functions, and no negative effect on iron levels in the blood (Phytomedicine, 2011).
What make Rooibos so unique?
  • Some of the polyphenols in Rooibos have a structure and function similar to the human hormone oestrogen. Scientists are looking into the potential of Rooibos as an alternative for the treatment of menopausal symptoms and steroid hormone-dependent cancers such as breast, prostrate, endometrial and colon cancer (Biology and Pharmacology Bulletin, 2006).
  • Rooibos contains a complex mix of polyphenols, including the unique antioxidant aspalathin that has not yet been found in any other plant. Rooibos also contains the rare compound nothofagin. Other major phenolic compounds are orientin and isoorientin, with smaller amounts of vitexin and isovitexin (Journal of Ethnopharmacology, 2008).