by Felicia Brower
As herbal remedies become increasingly popular, tea has been identified as a preferred alternative to traditional medication. Tea bars are opening up all over the country, and for the past eight years Central Ohio has had one that provides medicinal teas to ease the symptoms of certain ailments, especially those related to women’s health.
Inggrie Merriman, owner of Dublin’s TehKu Tea Company, has a deep passion for tea and its benefits. Originally from Indonesia, Merriman came to the United States to further her education and found that her true interests were in tea. “I grew up surrounded by a very heavy culture of tea. When I came to this country by myself, my beverage of choice was tea,” says Merriman. “You know how people have food that comforts the soul? Mine was tea.”
When guests enter TehKu, a friendly staff member and a wall of teas, many with health benefits, greet them. “We have tea from all over the world,” says Merriman. “We have prepared tea that doesn’t need to be blended, and we also have raw ingredients that we can blend here.”
TehKu carries close to 100 varieties of tea and herbs, and guests can drink the tea there or purchase it to go. While the number of teas to choose from seems daunting, they have samples that customers can smell before trying. If a customer is looking to remedy specific issues, they can ask a staff member for assistance or a recommendation.
Merriman prides herself on the wide selection of teas they offer and finds that they have the potential to help a lot of people. “We have a blend called ‘My Soothing Tea’ that is geared towards women’s health,” says Merriman. “It helps with the monthly cycle, PMS, and cramping, and it calms the nerves.”
They also offer a special tea for new mothers. “We have a tea for increased lactation. It’s an herbal tea that helps moms produce more milk for better breastfeeding,” says Merriman.
One of their most popular teas is Matcha Energy. Unlike traditional steeped teas, the entire leaf is ground and consumed. “When you steep and then remove the leaves, 65 percent of the non-water soluble component is left on the tea leaves,” explains Merriman. “In traditional tea, a lot of good stuff gets left behind. With matcha, you get it all.”
Matcha has a higher concentration of green tea antioxidants, fiber, minerals, and vitamins. It provides large amounts of the amino acid L-Theanine, which can improve memory, and contains small amounts of theophylline, a naturally occurring drug used to treat respiratory ailments. Matcha provides a level increase in energy for four to six hours, and unlike coffee, there are no jitters or spikes in energy. Some cancer patients enduring medical treatments rely on matcha to boost their immune systems and keep energy levels high.
With teas that reduce stress, aid in lactation and increase energy, it is not a surprise that people from all over the area visit the shop to feel better. Merriman has seen a rise in customers throughout the years, suggesting that more people in Central Ohio are becoming aware of the health opportunities in medicinal teas.
Location: 55 S High St., Dublin. For more information, call 614-761-3808 or visit TehKu.com.
Felicia Brower is a freelance writer based in Columbus. Connect at FeliciaBrower.com or email firstname.lastname@example.org.