4

votes

What does everyone think on herbal teas?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created August 20, 2012 at 2:19 PM

Hello everyone,

First post here, so hi to all!

I started Paleo in February, had a great time with it, went on holiday in June & it was a slippery slope since then. I never went back fully to eating 'normally/non paleo' but allowed sugar, dairy, binges & cheat days more than too often!

Recently got back on the wagon & I'm struggling this time around where as before I found it easy. I've got a real sweet tooth, so cutting out sugar is the difficult bit for me (& I do give in from time to time) but I find I am substituting my sweet cravings with herbal teas, like peppermint & licorice, cinnamon & cardamon, ginger etc...

I do find this puts my cravings off, & I know that they aren't really of any calorie value, but are they true to paleo? Could I be doing damage by drinking too much of these? & Do these teas count towards my water in take or not?

Thanks in advance for all of your help, & if anyone has any pointers for beating the sweet cravings I'd love to know!

Thanks - Hannah xx

0b7c3e7fd96005f0b2dfd781e512fc2e

(1237)

on June 10, 2013
at 01:14 PM

Herbal teas obviously would not have been consumed by our paleo ancestors, but that doesn't mean they aren't compatible with a paleo diet or that they're unhealthy. They can offer a variety of interesting health properties. Look at what's going into the blend: anything neolithic/post-agricultural? If not, drink up!

31ef66bfed0aea4975292d4eb0e9b943

(50)

on August 21, 2012
at 07:58 AM

Thanks Christopher, I've heard that before that you only need drink when you feel thirsty. But then I've been told different things by various PT's & never really know what to go by. I say I know I don't drink enough, because on rest days, I probably will only have 2-3 glasses (excluding tea's of various kinds) so have always been told I need to up the intake. Thanks for your help :-) x

31ef66bfed0aea4975292d4eb0e9b943

(50)

on August 21, 2012
at 07:56 AM

I know Renee, its great! With that being said, green tea is obviously meant to do wonders for you, but it has caffeine in, hence I get a bit confused from time to time! x

F92e4ca55291c3f3096a3d4d3d854986

(11698)

on August 20, 2012
at 04:15 PM

Absolutely non-caffeinated teas count, Hannah. It's the caffeine drinks that can count "against" because caffeine is a diuretic. And I love some of the ones you listed - Licorice tea, so good!

31ef66bfed0aea4975292d4eb0e9b943

(50)

on August 20, 2012
at 03:52 PM

Thanks so much for your in depth response, really helpful!

31ef66bfed0aea4975292d4eb0e9b943

(50)

on August 20, 2012
at 02:45 PM

Thank you :-) Its not so much that I'm tracking my water intake, its just that I'm aware I don't drink enough, so its a conscious effort for me to up my water intake, was just wondering if I could count my herbal tea as 'good liquids' & not have to up the water intake on top of these. x

  • 31ef66bfed0aea4975292d4eb0e9b943

    asked by

    (50)
  • Views
    13.5K
  • Last Activity
    1285D AGO
Frontpage book

Get FREE instant access to our Paleo For Beginners Guide & 15 FREE Recipes!

13 Answers

4
61f9349ad28e3c42d1cec58ba4825a7d

(10480)

on August 20, 2012
at 04:53 PM

Herbal teas are fine, Paleo speaking. Check in your blend to be sure it doesn't contain any grains or herbs that may have an unwanted effect.

I like to blend my own - iced chamomile and hibiscus is a good combo, as is chamomile lavender.

3
37cc142fbb183f2758ef723a192e7a9d

(1353)

on June 10, 2013
at 02:03 PM

Boiling a plant then drinking the broth is basically the second most paleo thing to do other than just munching the raw plant... so I wouldn't worry. As some have mentioned it would be if sugars are added that you have a problem. Best thing to do to be safe is grow your own herbs and use them. I use my own mint and wintergreen.

3
A7768b6c6be7f5d6acc76e5efa66464c

on August 20, 2012
at 07:53 PM

Herbal teas, as long as they don't contain diuretic herbs, absolutely contribute to your daily water intake. My favorite is pure hibiscus flowers (called "jamaica" in latin markets), which yield a beautiful, tart, garnet-colored tea that's good hot or cold.

I noticed in a comment to another response, you said you knew you didn't drink enough water. I wonder why you think this is the case?

In most reasonably healthy people, thirst is a more than adequate indicator of hydration, since the feeling of thirst arises with a relatively small increase in blood concentration (thirst begins at 2% increase, whereas dehydration is defined medically as 4%). The long-recommended "Eight 8oz glasses a day" on top of everything else you consume has absolutely no basis in science, and too much water consumption depletes electrolytes (unless you add some salt). Don't forget that 70-90% of the food you eat is water as well. Even dry foods have water. Drink how much you want, that makes you feel good.

Here's more:

Hydration 101: How much Water Do You Really Need?

31ef66bfed0aea4975292d4eb0e9b943

(50)

on August 21, 2012
at 07:58 AM

Thanks Christopher, I've heard that before that you only need drink when you feel thirsty. But then I've been told different things by various PT's & never really know what to go by. I say I know I don't drink enough, because on rest days, I probably will only have 2-3 glasses (excluding tea's of various kinds) so have always been told I need to up the intake. Thanks for your help :-) x

3
A2c38be4c54c91a15071f82f14cac0b3

(12682)

on August 20, 2012
at 07:35 PM

Herbal teas are great, my favorites are rooibos, peppermint, ginger, yerba mate, and st. john's wort. Although some herbal teas can have interesting health properties.

Hibiscus tea for example, while healthy and delicious, contains an a-amylase inhibitor (1). This means it makes digesting starches more difficult. So I avoid drinking hibiscus when I'm eating a starchy food like a sweet potato.

3
6120c989fd5b69f42a0834b69b87955b

(24553)

on August 20, 2012
at 05:13 PM

Herbal teas are fine, as long as they are just a blend of herbs. If it tastes sweet without adding a sweetener there are likely some weird ingredients in it.

It is wise to avoid any that have added "natural flavor" though, as those can be highly processed, often soy or grain based, and no longer particularly "natural" after the laboratory manipulation they go through. http://npofoods.com/news/your-natural-herbal-tea-may-not-be-so-natural/

Some of my old staples like from Celestial Seasonings Bengal Spice and Morning Thunder fall into the category of too many mystery ingredients for me now.

The stuff that comes pre-bagged is also much more expensive (like hundreds of dollars per pound instead of $15-20/lb.) than what you would find at a good herb store (or online) too, so if you like a certain herbal mix and drink it a lot, buying it bulk can save you a lot of money.

2
F5a0ddffcf9ef5beca864050f090a790

(15515)

on August 21, 2012
at 03:56 AM

Here is a tip for you to stop all your sugar cravings for good: eliminate ALL sweeteners - sugar, honey, fruit, berries, stevia, agave syrup, ANYTHING even remotely sweet. No fruit. I would also eliminate sweet potatoes and beets. Go low carb for a couple of days. At first your sugar cravings will continue, but then they will completely cease.

Some of you bad gut bacteria thrives on sugar. It is not you who is craving it, it is your gut bacteria. What is bad about fruit for some people - the more we have it, the more we crave sweet stuff.

Also, have some FOS free live probiotic cultures.

Then later you can re-introduce berries and then fruit without any problems.

As for herbal teas - they are fine as long as they are not sweet. I would even go with bitter herbs - it will help your liver to stop craving the stimulant. No licorice for sure. How about a dandelion root?

1
91451db3488201f51e85e6a69a6e0f89

(198)

on June 10, 2013
at 01:37 PM

If herbral tea is your problem, you sure as hell must be doing something right.

That's WAAAAAAAY down the chain for most people.

1
0d0842381492a41b2173a04014aae810

(4875)

on August 20, 2012
at 03:20 PM

I tend to avoid herbal tea blends because most contain some licorice root, which tends to suppress testosterone (1, 2).

I've always had a bit lower testosterone for a guy, so avoiding soy, alcohol, and licorice seems to make sense for me. Your personal needs may vary, but it may not be a bad thing to be cognizant of.

In the same realm of blends (especially Yogi brand): a fair amount of them contain barley, which isn't 'true to paleo'.

Overall, there should be no problem with good herbal teas (or better yet: steeping a few peppermint leaves or some grated ginger root with a few stevia leaves fresh off the plant) - just give the ingredient list a glance first.

31ef66bfed0aea4975292d4eb0e9b943

(50)

on August 20, 2012
at 03:52 PM

Thanks so much for your in depth response, really helpful!

0
9b31524c2da457538b934eb1aff955d8

on December 20, 2013
at 11:23 AM

Herbal tea, is any non-caffeinated made from different herbs. The medicinal benefits of specific herbs are often anecdotal or controversial. Herbal teas naturally contain no caffeine at all, which accounts in part for their mellow, soothing personality and their growing popularity. Benefits of Herbal Tea: It helps you to keep calm and relaxed state of mind. Aiding with stomach and digestive problems. Providing cleansing properties for the body. Promotes energy and wellness. Nourishes the Nervous System Helps to relieve in Stress

0
5966e5580a9a5ea33057ad3901ff8b57

on June 10, 2013
at 11:42 AM

I drink about 4 - 6 cups of herbal tea a day, A mixture of pure green tea, yerba mate, rooibos, chamomile, and the brand "tiny tea" which is a mixture f special Chinese herbs. I find it helps supress my sugar cravings. But I am curious if that is too much tea to be drinking in one day??

0
963322f175cdd4c5f7d52cc372b3a167

on August 21, 2012
at 04:12 AM

I personally do some of my best thinking on Irish breakfast tea. But I suppose herbal will work if nothing else is available.

0
Cfe88f41d0f90c6355a58eddbe78c9f8

on August 20, 2012
at 04:22 PM

I love herbal teas. They keep me from overdoing it with black tea and coffee. Linden and Fennel are my favorite. If you like the licorice tea, try some fennel tea--it's not as supersweet and just has a nice relaxing feel to it.

Overall, though, I don't think you'll go wrong with herbal tea. I try not to drink too much of any one certain kind, though. My cupboard is filled with all sorts of herbal and regular teas. I'd suggest adding an occasional green tea with a dab of honey into the rotation.

I also like apple teas--it's like a watered down apple cider.

I recently discovered Roasted Dandelion Root tea, which works great as a substitute for coffee.

0
785efa3950951957e65fa17efb25b078

(452)

on August 20, 2012
at 02:39 PM

It is near-impossible to drink too much water. If you are tracking your water intake, "youaredoingitwrong"

31ef66bfed0aea4975292d4eb0e9b943

(50)

on August 21, 2012
at 07:56 AM

I know Renee, its great! With that being said, green tea is obviously meant to do wonders for you, but it has caffeine in, hence I get a bit confused from time to time! x

31ef66bfed0aea4975292d4eb0e9b943

(50)

on August 20, 2012
at 02:45 PM

Thank you :-) Its not so much that I'm tracking my water intake, its just that I'm aware I don't drink enough, so its a conscious effort for me to up my water intake, was just wondering if I could count my herbal tea as 'good liquids' & not have to up the water intake on top of these. x

F92e4ca55291c3f3096a3d4d3d854986

(11698)

on August 20, 2012
at 04:15 PM

Absolutely non-caffeinated teas count, Hannah. It's the caffeine drinks that can count "against" because caffeine is a diuretic. And I love some of the ones you listed - Licorice tea, so good!

Answer Question


Get FREE instant access to our
Paleo For Beginners Guide & 15 FREE Recipes!