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You know it’s Fall when the Pumpkin Spice Latte returns. This popular drink is loved by some, despised by others but did you know it contains Chinese herbs?

These spices in the Pumpkin Spice Latte are all Chinese herbs. Here they are along with their actions on the body:

Cinnamon (gui zhi) - Warms digestion and gets rid of mucus

Ginger (sheng jiang) - Gets rid of cold, warms digestion, and stops cough

Nutmeg (rou dou kou) - Warms digestion

Cardamon (bai dou kou) - Gets rid of damp, strengthens and warms digestion

Clove (ding xiang) - Very warming and aromatic

To learn more about Chinese herbs, go here.

In addition to these delicious Chinese herbs, the Pumpkin Spice Latte unfortunately contains a lot of sugar as well as other damp ingredients. A grande latte with whipped cream from Starbucks contains a whopping 49 grams of sugar (the equivalent of 11 teaspoons). Here is a less sugary dairy-free version you can make at home. Your blood sugar level will thank you.

Dairy-Free Pumpkin Spice Latte Recipe
Serves 1
3 T strong ground coffee
2/3 C water
1/2 t pumpkin pie spice
1/4 - 1/2 t honey
2/3 C unsweetened almond milk, coconut milk, rice milk, or non-GMO soy milk

Brew coffee with water in your coffee maker or French press. Stir pumpkin pie spice and honey in small bowl. Put milk alternative into medium-sized microwave-safe bowl. Whisk milk alternative until it is frothy. Heat milk alternative in the microwave or in a pot on the stove until it is thoroughly warmed. Pour coffee into mug and stir pumpkin pie spice and honey blend until dissolved. Then, pour in milk. Sprinkle pumpkin pie spice, cinnamon, or nutmeg on top. Enjoy immediately!

This recipe is adapted from the Brokeass Gourmet’s Pumpkin Spice Latte Recipe featured in the Huffington Post article listed below.

If you are interested in taking Chinese herbs, please contact our office here or consult with your acupuncturist or Traditional Chinese Medicine practitioner first.

Benskey, D. et al., Chinese Herbal Medicine: Materia Medica, 3rd Ed.
Starbucks Pumkin Spice Latte Nutrition Facts available at http://www.starbucks.com/menu/drinks/espresso/pumpkin-spice-latte
Wilkey, R., “Make Your Own Damn Pumpkin Spice Latte for $1,” Huffington Post, Oct. 8, 2013 available at http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/10/08/pumpkin-spice-latte-recipe_n_4065744.html

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