Camellia sinensis alternatives.


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Back in the day when the missionaries were helping me with my investigation of the church, they couldn't believe I didn't touch tea, coffee or alcohol. Just didn't interest me. 

But I've always wondered, tea and coffee, rightly or wrongly has always been a bit of a poster boy for health benefits. Now as we're not supposed to consume such things, is there a type of herbal tea or drink that Latter day saints drink for health benefits? 

I know they enjoy a good bit of hot chocolate every now and then but I've often wondered if I'm missing a cultural trick as I'm not in the triangle so to speak. 

Personally, I'm partial to the odd chamomile at night. 

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2 hours ago, NoMiddleName said:

Tea and coffee

Coffee is pretty straight-forward.  We just don't drink it.  But we do drink a whole slew of coffee subsitutes.  Postum, Pero, and Cafix are common brands in the US.  They're basically baked or grilled grains that are ground to a powder.  Although Postum is somewhat different.

Some of the saints will drink decaf.  But most "orthodox"* members frown upon that.

Tea refers to the tea plant Camellia sinensis.  Several varieties are common: Earl Grey, Chai, Green, Black... The type of tea the Lipton uses is the generic tea.  But all of them are from the same plant species.  Less commonly known is that boba tea is also made from the same plant.  However, some drinks that say boba are actually made with herbal tea.  But if you don't know, chances are, it is made from the tea plant.

Herbal tea is perfectly acceptable.  Most saints will drink herbal teas (like chamomile, as you mentioned) all the time.

Consider this:  If you have a soup that has some herbs in it for seasoning, how is that broth any different than an herbal tea?  But there is no prohibition of stews and soups.  So, it isn't just a hot water based drink with plant matter as flavoring.  It is the plant which we call the tea plant.

*Note that the term "orthodox" is not really one that we tend to use.  But on this site, some visitors have used the term to refer to most of the frequenters to this site.  It is an unfamiliar term in our faith.  And we all go to the same churches (although there are splinter groups that we do not associate with) it does kind of give you an idea of what is considered to be more "official teaching".

Edited by Carborendum
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37 minutes ago, Carborendum said:

Consider this:  If you have a soup that has some herbs in it for seasoning, how is that broth any different than an herbal tea?  But there is no prohibition of stews and soups.  So, it isn't just a hot water based drink with plant matter as flavoring.  It is the plant which we call the tea plant.

I'm missing what you're asking us to consider.  Are you wondering if we can eat tea leaves and not have it be a violation of the word of wisdom?

Edited by NeuroTypical
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27 minutes ago, NeuroTypical said:

I'm missing what you're asking us to consider.  Are you wondering if we can eat tea leaves and not have it be a violation of the word of wisdom?

Quite the opposite.  

I've heard some people say that herbal tea is still tea, and therefore, a violation of the WoW.  So, I made the differentiation between the tea plant and a drink that may be called "tea" (herbal tea, but still called "tea").

The argument I made was that no one considers soup with herbs in it as a violation of the WoW.  So, a drink made of the same herbs that we would normally put in soups can't be a violation either.

It is the tea plant that is the offending ingredient.

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On 9/2/2022 at 7:56 PM, Carborendum said:

Quite the opposite.  

I've heard some people say that herbal tea is still tea, and therefore, a violation of the WoW.  So, I made the differentiation between the tea plant and a drink that may be called "tea" (herbal tea, but still called "tea").

The argument I made was that no one considers soup with herbs in it as a violation of the WoW.  So, a drink made of the same herbs that we would normally put in soups can't be a violation either.

It is the tea plant that is the offending ingredient.

Well, the verse says

Quote

9 And again, hot drinks are not for the body or belly.

Though, there are some that would call me rather extreme in what I do or do not do (for example, I don't watch R-rated movies, and even PG ones are things I am very cautious about, most have too much violence or other material that I find inappropriate), I think the extremely strict ones go further than just nothing that is called Tea.

I have been rather cautious around ANY HOT DRINKS, but it is something I do personally and don't impose on others.  I normally avoid any hot drink including Hot Chocolate, as well as soups that are overly hot as well.  It is up to each in their own interpretation beyond anything that our leaders have said. 

Just like some years ago when others tried to say it was caffeine or tannin or other items on why we should not drink coffee or tea, those who said we should avoid ALL hot drinks would talk about throat cancer and the build up of scar tissue for those who drank very hot items.  The scalding would cause damage to the throat and eventually could cause a cancer there. 

These are excuses though, obviously.  The reason we don't drink hot drinks or coffee or tea is because we have been told not to by our leaders.  Other than that, it is up to our own individual interpretations.  I still have soup, but normally don't eat it if it is extremely hot or scalding, preferring to let it cool down first.  It is a personal preference of my own interpretation.

I have known plenty of others that drink Herbal teas or coffee substitutes.

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I think what I was getting at with the thread, was that Tea and Coffee rightly or wrongly are praised for their benefits and so I was wondering as a latter day saint, what would be the substitute drink for those kinds of benefits. I understand the whole hot drink thing, although back in the days of pioneering and harsh winters, a hot drink would have gone a ways to lighten the weather. 

Although to extend this, Section 89 of the Doctrine and Covenants, commonly known as the "Word of Wisdom" gives members dietary guidelines. It says to consume fruit seasonally, eat meat sparingly, and to eat grain, especially wheat, which is referred to as "the staff of life." The scripture prohibits consumption of alcohol, tobacco, and "hot drinks" (coffee and tea).

Is actually something I take seriously, I'm 95% vegetarian and rarely touch meat. I don't consume anything out of season. And I can confirm, wheat is indeed the staff of life, hence why I look great for my age....

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Herrbal tea is kind of a misnomer.  Instead, herbal tea is an infusion or blend of various leaves, fruits, bark, roots, or flowers belonging to almost any edible, non-tea plant.  As long as it isn't coming from back or green tea leaves you should be just fine.

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1 hour ago, NeuroTypical said:

Just out of curiosity, are you a pre-comma or a post-comma meat eater?

That's a more iffy situation.

It depends on what one's definition of famine is.  When much of the United States is in a drought...does that constitute a famine as it would have 150 years ago, or since we still have enough food due to modern logistics, is it NOT a famine?

I eat meat during all the year round, but I don't get excessive about it.  We hunt for food (though I am slowing down in my old age, so...maybe not so much anymore) and am a MASSIVE supporter of NO WASTE.  That means, you don't kill wantonly or just for trophies.  You eat what you kill with thankfulness, and don't toss any of it.  You use as much of it as possible.

This goes hand in hand with thrift.  I am unsure how it goes in Utah or has gone in Utah (I hear the savings are not as extreme), but it used to be we could get almost 500 to 600 pounds of meat for the price of a tag (not in Utah).  That's a great way to get food.  I remember when I was young, we'd go out with my father and he would have us go through the bushes (no dogs, we were the ones acting as it) to scare the birds up and he'd have a shotgun he'd shoot almost three down as they flew up.  We'd also go after other animals for food. 

I probably eat far more vegetables and fruits when I am at home than most.  We do eat meat during non-winter times though.  The last meal with meat that I had was probably last Friday, so it's not that we eat it every meal.  Last night I had some broccoli thrown in with rice and had cheese over the top for a type of casserole.  The night before I had a vegetarian lasagna that my wife made for us.  The night before that we had some peppers mixed with guacamole and  cilantro tossed in, with the extra that we could eat the avocado's on their own if we wanted.  We also had a side of Kiwi fruits to eat on. 

So, we don't go out of our way to eat meat, but we DO eat it, especially during and after hunting season. 

I am not perfect though.  I'd interpret it more that we should eat meat sparingly, and that the times we should eat it are during times of winter, cold, or famine.  I don't follow that strictly, though I think it comes down to respect of the life that you do hunt and kill to eat, and the balance between that and the Word of Wisdom. 

Edited by JohnsonJones
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Good deal, @JohnsonJones.  I wish I did more hunting.  The antelope I got a decade ago kept us supplied for 6 months of occasional cooking. 

Wife and kids raise turkeys/chickens/geese.  We've all got our eye on the big angry goose who hates us.  We call him "big mad".  There will be no love lost when he's on our plate.  But behind all the talk, I think we have that respect and gratitude you mention.

Edited by NeuroTypical
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2 hours ago, NeuroTypical said:

The antelope I got a decade ago kept us supplied for 6 months of occasional cooking. 

I’ve never hunted in my life, and I don’t know anyone who does, so I apologize for the ignorance of this question-One animal allowed your family to eat for six months? Just very surprised. 
 

 

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Oh no, just "occasional cooking".  You get maybe 80 lbs of meat from an antelope.  Maybe 2 lbs for a family of 4, and that makes 20 family meals, give or take.   We maybe had it weekly, so that's ~5-ish months. 

I turned lots of breakfast and italian sausage!  Breakfast burrito scrambles - Yum!

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19 hours ago, 1blindi said:

To reply to the OP, I make various tisanes using Rooibos:  https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/rooibos-tea-benefits It is the closest thing I've found to actual black tea (I am a convert). It complies with the WoW; it has a good earthy taste; it can be mixed with other herbal teas, juices, or milk.

How are you finding the Rooibos? You noticed any changes since you've been drinking it? 

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