Kate Dalton believes passionately in the healing powers of plants, so much so that when she emerged fresh from studying naturopathy at the age of 23, she launched her own range of boutique, artisan teas. Today, Mayde Tea has blossomed into so much more. Here, she chats with us about soothing anxiety, mindful steeping and when to introduce kids to the joys of tea. Oh, and how her ultimate tea party guests would include The Spice Girls, Prince Harry & Meghan Markle...
How did you come to find yourself in a world of gorgeous organic tea?
Mayde Tea began almost five years ago – somewhere in amongst a double university degree and a full-time café job. I was creating herbal blends for myself for digestive problems and anxiety while I was studying herbal medicine, and I got so excited by how much it helped me that I really wanted to be able to help other people suffering with similar health issues.
I started the business with a whole heap of knowledge of the medicinal properties of herbs, but with little knowledge of running a business – so that was an interesting learning curve!
It all feels like a bit of a whirlwind but I’m so happy with how far it’s come! When I graduated a couple of years ago, I was initially able put all of my energy into Mayde Tea and hire some amazing staff, and now I’m splitting my energy between the business and my naturopathy consultations. It’s been such an interesting and fun journey – and I’ve loved the challenge.
As a qualified naturopath who's also studied nutrition and herbal medicine, what are the most common health questions you get hit with from mums?
Digestive disorders, fatigue, depression, anxiety, auto-immune conditions and skin imbalances. As someone’s life goes through changes – like when they enter motherhood – most of their body systems will be affected to some degree. Sleepless nights, dietary changes, increased stress/anxiety and adrenal exhaustion can all take their toll on health. This can present in so many different ways, affecting many or all of the body systems.
You’re someone who prioritises health and wellbeing, can you share a little bit about your daily routine?
I guess I’m pretty sensitive to having my diet changed, so this is something I make sure I watch. This is never in the way of calories, but more so making sure I’m having well-balanced meals of a protein, healthy fats and vegetables at every meal. This always ensures my energy remains stable throughout the day and I avoid the 3pm slump. I always make sure I do some sort of movement every day – walking, surfing or going to the gym – to get the blood flowing. I usually start my day like this (if work allows). Plus, I meditate for 10 minutes each day and spend at least an hour technology-free.
If you could recommend habits for anyone to kick or include in everyday life, what would they be?
To assist natural energy production, I’d recommend avoiding coffee and other stimulants when cortisol is naturally at its highest (between waking and 9am), and making sure protein is a part of every meal.
It’s no secret that most parents feel sleep deprived. What blend of Mayde Tea would you recommend to improve the quality of their sleep?
Definitely our Serenity blend. This gentle, yet effective formulation of medicinal herbs is really beneficial for anxiety and sleep. Chamomile works on both the digestive and nervous systems, and passionflower helps to calm and relax the body, encouraging a restful night’s sleep.
I’d also recommend our Energise blend to drink in the morning and during the day. These herbs help to naturally improve circulation – improving energy and vitality by assisting the body’s natural energy production. Both of these blends can help to naturally support and regulate our sleep-wake cycle.
What about mums who desperately need to unwind due to the demands of their little ones and mum-life in general?
I think the act of making your herbal tea is the first step to unwinding. Being able to take time out for yourself is so important, even if it’s for five minutes. Try mindfully boiling the kettle, admiring the beautiful mix of vibrant herbs going into your teapot, and waiting the couple of minutes it takes for it to steep. The Serenity blend is perfect for promoting relaxation.
How about little people… Is it beneficial for mums to be introducing their children to the concept of drinking tea, what’s the best age for children to begin drinking tea?
Yes, definitely! Firstly, our Digest tea has been amazing for breastfeeding mums to drink, especially if their little one has colic. I actually have a blend called Nursing to be released in the next few weeks which has been formulated specifically for breastfeeding mums. My sister makes a weak brew of our Digest blend and puts it into her one-year old’s sippy cup. He has a few intolerances and other digestive issues, so it helps to soothe his tummy and gently encourage bowel movements.
Which of the Mayde Tea blends are the best to start children on?
This would, of course, depend on the advice of their own health professional, but the ones have used for clients so far are the Serenity, Restore and Digest blends.
What’s next for Kate Dalton and Mayde Tea?
We have a little store called Mayde Space in Byron Bay. This is the physical home for Mayde Tea, as well as other products that marry with the Mayde Tea philosophy – organic, ethically produced and aimed at aiding a sustainable lifestyle. I’d love to open another and incorporate it into a wellness centre to have my naturopathy consults along with other practitioners in different modalities.
If you were throwing a tea party, who would you invite and what would you serve?
Oh this is a good question and I’m going to say exactly who came to mind first (purely because… imagine the conversation!) The Spice Girls, Ryan Gosling, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle. I’d serve every dairy-free cake in the world, so I didn’t miss out on cake for once, he he.
If you could travel anywhere in the world in search of the ultimate tea experience, where would you go?
Sri Lanka, India and Japan.
To you, happiness is…
Being grateful for every, single moment.