Legend and lore suggest Chai Tea was invented by a royal king in India who kept his recipe undisclosed and sacred. In fact Chai Tea is a product of Ayurveda, a science of India that dates as far back as five thousand years. Chai does not refer to a particular type of tea but the manner in which it is prepared and served, with milk/cream and honey/sugar. Traditionally each family would have their own recipe of herbs and spices to mix and boil with tea leaves. This recipe was based on available ingredients and the constitutions of family members. Typically this is a highly potent blend that has myriad medicinal and health promoting properties. Among these benefits of consuming Chai regularly is to increase the digestive fire, sooth and relax the digestive tract, increase waste and toxin excretion, elevate metabolism, and decrease appetite.
Science is finding Tea (Black, Green, and Oolong), the main ingredient of Chai, is an excellent source for anti-oxidants, good for the heart, and reducing cholesterol levels. In addition numerous herbs are combined with the Tea to give it its unique flavors and healing properties. It isn't one herb or spice in general that aids in digestion but the combination of many acting together. The result is a delicious, piquant, and often times dark brew.