If you read my article on making your own Mamma Chia, you may remember that one of the Mamma Chia flavors is blackberry hibiscus. At the time, I was not sure how to get the hibiscus flavor into the make-it-yourself Mamma Chia, but since then I’ve discovered not only sources for hibiscus extract and hibiscus flower essence but also some information on why you can benefit from including it in your homemade Mamma Chia, or just drinking it on its own.
First of all, let me say that if you happen to be pregnant you should avoid hibiscus. It seems that hibiscus can be something of an aphrodisiac, although it’s not clear what quantity you would have to take to get that effect. Since it can cause the uterus to contract at some dosage, however, and that could cause a miscarriage, be safe rather than sorry and just avoid it while pregnant. You can stick to the other flavors for now and try the blackberry hibiscus after your baby is safely here.
If you’re not pregnant, however, you can enjoy hibiscus with no worries. It is high in antioxidants, supports heart health, helps regulate body temperature and maintain fluid balance, and promotes good circulation. Hibiscus contains quercetin, which many of us take in capsule form for natural allergy relief and heart health, and it helps maintain normal blood pressure levels.
There are sources for hibiscus tea and hibiscus extract, as well as hibiscus flower essence; of these, the extract and the essence are more likely to work best in homemade Mamma Chia. Dr. Mercola offers the tea and the extract on his web site, or you can find the flower essence less expensively on vitamin web sites such as Vitacost.com. I didn’t check at Nutra Foods yet, but more than likely they have hibiscus in some form too.
Or, you can just bite the bullet and buy the authentic Mamma Chia. Either way, you'll appreciate the lovely but subtle flowery note it adds.