Mountain tea comes from a plant called Sideritis spp or simply Dioscorides’ Siderites, which is said to have been named after the Greek word for steal (sidiros), due to its healing properties on wounds caused with steal weapons.
An ancient Japanese proverb says that “Top notch tea only comes from high mountains”.
An increasing number of laboratory studies has determined its components and focused on the impact they may have on the human body. It has been found that mountain tea contains a number of substances, the main ones being diterpenes, phenylpropane, iridoids and monoterpenes. Further modern research confirms the antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial and analgesic effect of these substances. Team studies that have examined the composition of the beverage have established that it has anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and anxiolytic effects.
In Greece, Mountain Tea is traditionally preferred for its beneficial effects on colds and on inflammation of the upper respiratory system as well as to fight indigestion and gastrointestinal disorders, and is considered an antispasmodic, analgesic and healing remedy.
The most important fact is that it bears anti-stress effects without the side effects that appear in other anxiolytic plant species. Mountain tea extracts can contribute to the prevention of osteoporosis, as well as to the protection against the loss of bone density and enhancement of the bones’ mechanical strength.
More medicinal properties of the mountain tea have been found recently that are related to its effectiveness against the Alzheimer’s disease.
Mountain tea essential oil is an essentially effective antimicrobial due to its carvacrol content.