Herbal Tisanes for Self-Care

As you clasp the warm cup of tisane between your hands and experience the flavor and the aroma through your senses, elevate your self-care ritual with a prayer of wellness and gratitude: “With each sip, my reproductive organs are in perfect working condition. I am deeply nourished. I am perfectly healthy.

women's reproductive health

Please share with us your inspiration for starting KOKOBÉRNA.

My love for health, beauty, and wellness began at an early age, in the royal Efik courts of Old Calabar Kingdom, Nigeria, where I apprenticed with my grandmother, a renowned healer and herbalist, who specialized in handcrafting intricate indigenous medicinal herbal remedies. The invaluable lessons learned as a young apprentice on the art of beauty and the therapeutics of traditional African plant medicines, would remain in my heart.

After several years on Wall Street and a health crisis, I felt a calling to journey back home. During my time there, I discovered a herbal skin oil from my grandmother’s library that effectively healed my surgical scar, repaired the surrounding skin tissue, and significantly reduced the excess keloid growth.

I would spend time in my home country discovering, cataloguing, and apprenticing under the guardianship of artisan herbalists to learn the fine art of recreating these divine skin care treatments. In identifying and refining the intricate composites of the bio-dynamic formulating process that was used; diligently researching the healing power of the indigenous herbs, nocturnal flowers, and medicinal bush plants used in traditional African medicine; and meticulously investigating clinical studies on each ingredient, the result of which was a combination of 35 thoroughly researched nutrient-rich indigenous plant ingredients and extracts with a proven record of safety and efficacy. The seed of KOKOBÉRNA was planted and my first formulation, the sacred crown jewel of the brand, HEALER’S GOLD™ Face Oil, was born.

The unwavering commitment to preserve my family's values and legacy, led to the laborious creation of the comprehensive KOKOBÉRNA heritage library of ancient African herbal remedies built over two decades. A global citizen who has continental living experiences across Africa, Europe, and America, I enjoy representing the refined and authentic qualities of West African “Art de Vivre” around the world. A life-long learner, I am also a certified functional nutritionist, a mindfulness-based meditator, and am currently aligning my deep knowledge of traditional African medicine with the grounded principles that traditional Ayurveda medicine provides. Lastly, I believe the ability to live an abundant healthy lifestyle lies in one's conscious awareness of the integrative relationship between body + mind + spirit™.

From nature which provides a tremendously powerful materia medica, to the excellent quality of our handcrafted products and the lasting promise they deliver, to the endearing relationship between the brand and its customers who are discerning and expect the best; this is the KOKOBÉRNA way.

What does the name KOKOBÉRNA mean?

The African proverb states, “A good name is better than riches.” In ancient Africa, and even in today’s modern African societies, when a child is born, its name is a reflection of its essence, its crown, what it is destined to do in life.

KOKOBÉRNA is a combination of two words: Kǒkóèkà – my tribal name has a rich history in the Efịk culture, one of many tribes and languages in Nigeria, and literally translates “mother’s daughter, mother’s essence, mother’s reflection” AND Bernadette - named after Saint Bernadette of Lourdes that was given during my coming of age confirmation rite of passage, literally translates “brave as a bear”.

It is our belief the origin of our name reflects the essence of our brand and its destiny; an ideal that mirrors the substance of the KOKOBÉRNA Woman – a contemporary who harnesses both her divine feminine and divine masculine energies in how she affects change in the world.

Is there a difference between a tea and a tisane?

A tea is a traditional infusion made specifically from the delicate leaves of the Camellia sinensis tea plant, the caffeinated species from which all tea leaves are harvested. Tea blends that include matcha, black tea, pu-erh tea, green tea, white tea, oolong tea, and some purple teas all fall under the tea category. Infusions such as yerba mate, which contain caffeine, are not related to the Camellia sinensis plant.

A tisane (təˈzan) is a traditional infusion consisting of therapeutic substances and herbs that exclude the tea plant. Pure tisane blends include the roots, resin, softwood, gum, bark, leaves, flowers, fruits, grains, minerals, and seeds that are steeped (infusion) or simmered (decoction). In ancient traditional cultures and medicinal systems, tisanes are a popular non-caffeinated alternative because of their holistic, therapeutic, and regenerative effects on the whole body.

Do tisanes have any significant benefits that are different from teas?

The indigenous peoples of ancient traditional cultures across Africa, Asia, and the rest of the world do not consume hot drinks the way it is consumed here in the West. It is approached with a delicate sense of gentility, of reverence, of tradition, and consumed in small portions.

Although touted as having high-antioxidant content and generally good for immunity support, the tea plant can be drying/astringent to the body and overly stimulative to the circulatory system when drunk in excess. For example, in a society where our body-mind is extremely stressed and our bodies over-exercised, heavy consumption of caffeinated beverages and teas oftentimes leads to insomnia, increased hypertension, and overworked circulation which then leads to excess heat within the body and subsequently, internal and hormonal imbalance.

Alternatively, true tisanes are rooted in the healing powers of nature, science of rejuvenation, and holistic energetics; they are gentle and nutritive to the tissues and organs of the body. This is why our collection of premium herbal tisanes have a minimum effective serving that steadily supports the body on a cumulative basis to reduce inflammation so you feel better inside out, day after day.

What is the best way to enjoy KOKOBÉRNA Tisanes?

In ancient times, the preparation of a brew began as medicine and became a ceremony; the art and celebration of life. It is this ritualistic approach of devotion to one’s health that we recommend KOKOBÉRNA tisanes be prepared by way of decocted infusions because decocted tisanes are simmered over a low flame and yield a deeply-flavored nutritive elixir by fully extracting the nutrients from heartier parts of the herbal blends such as roots, seeds, barks, and minerals.

How does one brew a KOKOBÉRNA Tisane?

The noble art of the brew is of supreme importance. To honor the aesthetic tranquility of one’s self-care ritual and to fully draw out the essence, vitamins, enzymes, minerals, flavonoids, and aromatic volatile oils that offer cell-rejuvenating, anti-inflammatory, and beautifying properties, we recommend a longer steeping time than that which is typically experienced in western herbalism.

SERVING SIZE
  • ¼ tsp. of herbs to 1 cup of water
DECOCT
  • Place ¼ tsp. serving of herbs into a saucepan
  • Pour 1 cup fresh spring water over herbs
  • Cover the saucepan
  • Heat the water and herbs over a low flame
  • Do not boil, simmer for 30-60 minutes
  • Strain, discard the herbs, and enjoy
INFUSE
  • Bring 1 cup fresh spring water to a boil
  • Remove from heat, set aside 1 minute
  • Pour hot water over ¼ tsp. serving of herbs
  • Steep covered for 30-60 minutes or overnight
  • Strain, discard the herbs, and enjoy 

A lot of thought has been put into our compound herbal formulas. It is why we spend more than thirty days bio-dynamically syncing each batch to its highest frequencies, why our specific method strengthens the synergistic effects of our potentized herbal blends to bring vitality to those who appreciate the fine art of nature.

In everything we do, we are maniacal about the details and therefore we do not recommend making “ice tea”, microwaving the tea, or adding sweeteners; yes, even natural sweeteners such as stevia, monk fruit, etc. Allow the therapeutic effects of the tisanes to work holistically and please enjoy responsibly. 

Can KOKOBÉRNA Tisanes be enjoyed daily?

All KOKOBÉRNA tisanes can be enjoyed daily, any time of day, with no more than two cups a day.

The exception is SACRAL WOMB™ Reproductive Wellness™ Tisane which is best enjoyed first upon rising and a second cup the early part of the day. We also suggest not to drink the tisane during your menstrual cycle; this gives the pituitary gland (produces and secretes hormones), liver, and reproductive organs the space to reset and go through a regular cycle^.

Women experiencing menopausal symptoms may consume SACRAL WOMB™ Reproductive Wellness™ Tisane daily. The decocted brew can also be added to a sitz bath to cleanse and soothe vaginal inflammation. You may also increase the serving size depending on your body’s chemistry.

However, with all herbal products, a week-long break between replenishments is recommended.

SACRAL WOMB™ Reproductive Wellness™ Herbal Tisane

Please tell us about SACRAL WOMB™ Reproductive Wellness™ Tisane.

KOKOBÉRNA is a woman-founded, woman-owned, and woman-focused West African beauty and wellness lifestyle brand.

Traditionally, African’s have always had a reverence for sacred rites of passage and there are three important stages in a woman’s life to include the rites of youth, womanhood, and maturity.

These stages are marked with:

  • Menstruation
  • Conception, pregnancy and delivery
  • Menopause

Depending on her lifestyle choices, these can be trying periods or beautiful milestones in her life. Each stage, if not managed properly, can adversely affect her body, her mind, and how she shows up in the world. Our SACRAL WOMB Reproductive Wellness Tisane supports women through these important stages of their lives although most of our tisanes are not safe to use while pregnant or breastfeeding^.

What are the key ingredients in SACRAL WOMB™ Reproductive Wellness™ Tisane and their benefits?

Scientific studies around reproductive health and its effect on longevity are finally honing in on the message that the longer women can ease menstrual disorders and/or delay the onset of menopausal symptoms (reproductive aging), the longer lifespan they typically have. Each certified organic herb in our SACRAL WOMB™ Reproductive Wellness™ Tisane was systematically selected according to their therapeutic adaptogen effect, the specific flavonoids they contain, and the potency they possess to synergistically support women’s reproductive health and minimize reproductive aging.

Moringa contains a unique abundance of bioflavonoids, antioxidants, adaptogens, and vitamins that are scientifically proven to protect the liver and reduce oxidative stress within the body and brain; Wild Yam Root is used to regulate hormonal action as well as activate and stimulate liver function so hormones can be circulated properly in the body; Black Cohosh helps to regulate hormone activity, stimulate the estrogen cycle, and helpful for painful or delayed menstruation; Dong Quai tones and strengthens the uterus and ovaries; Red Clover helps to relieve hot flashes, brain fog/depression, and vaginal dryness; Licorice is often recommended to promote fertility as well as improving adrenal exhaustion and hormonal imbalances; Shatavari is an immunity booster and nourishes whole body to provide relief from menstrual cramps, neurophysiological imbalances, and polycystic ovary syndrome; and both Nettle (relieves water retention and bloating) and Alfalfa provide rich sources of plant estrogens, chlorophyll, vitamins and minerals including calcium, magnesium, iron, phosphorus, potassium, and vitamins B, C, and E.

Overall, a nourishing brain-liver-body tisane to help delay ovarian aging and strengthen the immune system using medicinal herbs that holistically promote reproductive wellness.

Ingredients: *Moringa leaf, *raspberry leaf, *burdock root, *alfalfa leaf, *goldenrod, *black cohosh root, *red clover blossoms, *shatavari root, *dong quai root, *motherwort, *nettle leaf, *wild yam, *amla gooseberry, *sage leaf, *damiana leaf, and *licorice root.
*Certified Organic Content: 100%

SACRAL WOMB™ Reproductive Wellness™ Herbal Tisane

Does SACRAL WOMB™ Reproductive Wellness™ Tisane have any benefits particularly helpful for women of color?

All KOKOBÉRNA products are designed and formulated without endocrine disruptors that adversely affect how the liver regulates estrogen, testosterone, DHEA, and progesterone. When the liver is not overburdened, it prevents hormones from changing into dangerous metabolites which is why we chose this specific complex of medicinal herbs that can assist the liver to properly metabolize and excrete hormones for overall wellness and reproductive health.

The truth is, painful, prolonged periods are not normal. Heavy bleeding and severe pelvic pain is not normal. The rate of fibroids among women of color, relative to white women, is not normal. The subsequent effect of an increase in hysterectomies, offered as the "best" and oftentimes "the only" solution, especially to women of color, is not normal.

It is our goal to bring to our customers alternative herbal solutions and it is my hope SACRAL WOMB™ Reproductive Wellness™ Tisane can help alleviate some of these problems and holistically support our bodies in moving seamlessly through the different life stages so we can fully enjoy optimal health and wellness our whole lives.

How has your work as a functional nutrition coach helped with formulating KOKOBÉRNA products?

My journey in setting a solid foundation for KOKOBÉRNA spanned almost two decades - time spent cataloguing my foremothers’ handcrafted remedies passed down within the family and going as far back as the early 1600s, ethically sourcing our ingredients, establishing the foundation of our supply chain, and working with a hand-selected team to help me refine the structure of the herbal remedies and validate the scientific research of the plant ingredients and their clinically-proven properties for skin, hair, and body.

During that time, I became a certified functional nutrition coach which afforded me the opportunity to access deep foundational knowledge about nutrition science, digestion, metabolism, immunity, change psychology, and how the whole body works on a cellular level. The unique ability to combine scientific theory with practical knowledge accelerated a meeting of the minds, to ask the right questions, to update herbal protocols, and fine-tune the KOKOBÉRNA heritage library of handcrafted remedies; both from a holistic and therapeutic standpoint so the KOKOBÉRNA Woman can effectively relieve stress and inflammation with our therapeutic wellness solutions, look beautiful with our nutrient-rich skincare products, and live a longer, healthier, and more fulfilled life.

For those that are new to your brand, what can they expect from the Tisanes and Skincare Products?

For those that are seeking a holistic lifestyle and are new to the brand, ÈMÉDÍ KOKOBÉRNA - Welcome to KOKOBÉRNA!

KOKOBÉRNA is a contemporary West African holistic beauty and wellness lifestyle brand, blending heritage and scientific innovation to handcraft an emblematic collection of therapeutic and nutrient-rich products that cultivate a deep-rooted connection between body + mind + spirit™. Operating as a benefit company, 5% of every sale is donated to charities that uplift humanity and empower women and young girls across the globe. Founded 1611 by ancestral monarchs of Old Calabar Efik Kingdom, Nigeria, West Africa and today under my creative direction as a fourteenth generation descendant.


Thank you for supporting our business, welcome to the tribe, and may you always be #kokobernabeautiful.

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The views expressed in this article intend to highlight alternative wellness and self-care solutions. This article is for informational purposes only, even if and to the extent that it features wellness advice. This article is not, nor is it intended to be, a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment and should never be relied upon for specific medical advice.

^These statements have not been evaluated by the U.S. Federal Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. Caution is recommended when consuming tisanes (herbal tea) while on any medication, as the herbal formula could both potentiate as well as diminish the effects of any prescribed drug/medication uptake^ so use good common sense and enjoy responsibly. As with all supplements, we recommend you consult a qualified physician or healthcare practitioner before using herbal products particularly if you are pregnant, breastfeeding, consuming alcohol, or are taking prescribed medications and/or have a medical condition. Not for use in persons with hypertension, auto-immune disease, liver disorders, edema, severe kidney insufficiency, low blood potassium, or heart disease. Take a week-long break between replenishments. Keep away from children.


*certified organic ingredients

 

Sources:

https://doi.org/10.1002/hbm.25180

https://doi.org/10.1126/sciadv.abc2590

https://doi.org/10.1038/srep32833

https://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.52677

https://dx.doi.org/10.1016%2Fj.rbms.2018.03.001

https://dx.doi.org/10.1007%2Fs12231-016-9344-0

https://doi.org/10.1016/j.celrep.2020.01.058

https://dx.doi.org/10.3746/jkfn.2016.45.6.819

 

 

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