Flavoured Tea

This topic contains 14 replies, has 7 voices, and was last updated by  Katylou83 7 years, 3 months ago.

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  • Hello everyone,

    I am on my first fast day today and I was just about to brew a big pot of my favourite Twinings Salted Caramel Green Tea to get me through the day when it hit me that maybe the flavouring, although natural, might interfere with the fast. I tried to find an answer in the forum but did not get very far. Does anyone know if I can indulge on teas like the one mentioned above or not?!

    Thanks & Happy New Year,


    Hi @uts

    I had my first fast day yesterday and drank several fruit teas throughout the day. I lost 1.2kg yesterday so it worked for me!

    I guess as long as they are low or no calories then they are fine?!

    I have a coffee addiction but I use sugar. I struggled without it yesterday but someone else recommended stevia which is zero calories. It’s been working for her so I’m going to give that a go!

    Good luck 😊

    I personally count every calorie on FDs, even those in tea. According to Twinnings, the Salted Caramel Green Tea equates to 4 calories per cup. If you’d like to read that from the Twinnings website, here’s the link:


    I’ve been drinking a lot of fruit favored teas. I mainly started because I have having a hard time with the coffee stains on my teeth.

    I’m pretty sure the “natural” favors probably aren’t so great. However sometimes it is just what makes the fasting better. If you aren’t trying to do a pure water fast, then a favored tea without sweetener is probably a pretty limited negative. At least that is my thinking.

    I would same the same for diet sodas, coffee, bone broth, etc … if it is very low calorie and gets your through the fast it is probably better than not fasting.

    BTW, I really like blueberry favored tea, even though I’m generally not a fan of blueberries.

    Hi Uts
    If you drink more than 1 or 2 cups, you need to count the calories.
    Try 3 or 4 cups per day and keep a mega-sized bottle of water near you all the time.
    I like coffee and apparently an Americano is zero cals. It’s also good for helping to prevent Alzheimers in old age.
    PS I don’t like sweet drinks, so no sugar or sweeteners.

    Hello all,

    Thank you so much for taking the time to reply to my post! And for your valuable thoughts and recommendations! I guess, I will limit my intake to one or two cups as a treat half way through the fast day.

    Well done @katylou83 for that amazing start! I am not monitoring my weight as for me it is more a matter of fitting into some of my clothes again and just feeling better. I am keeping track of my girth though… But I have to say that this first fast day was very easy to get through, even without the Salted Caramel Green Tea, and I feel strangely alert and positive today. And although I do not have to limit myself today, the knowledge that I can feel good with much less food, motivates me to stick to healthy things and not to go crazy on the portions.

    Good luck to you all,


    Thanks @uts

    Good luck to you too!

    You mentioned using stevia as a sweetener. Long term this may not be a great idea. Dr Fung, in his book The Obesity Code, has a chapter dedicated to artificial sweeteners & why they are harmful. In essence; while artificial sweeteners (including stevia) have no calories, receptors in our bodies (mouth, gut) interpret their presence as sugar/glucose & send signals to secrete insulin. Some sweetens cause insulin level rises up to 20x the amount an equal amount of sugar would cause (don’t have book with me & can’t say exactly the amount stevia spikes insulin levels, but it is mentioned). This helps explain why people who drink zero calorie sodas gain more weight than those who drink normal sodas, or abstain.

    bcjmmac, I do not think stevia should be included in a chapter concerning artificial sweeteners. Stevia is a natural sweetener. The British NHS says this about it.
    Steviol glycosides were approved by the EU in 2010 after the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) carried out a comprehensive analysis (PDF, 532kb) of all the available evidence and concluded they were safe for human consumption.
    Extensive research has been done on steviol glycosides, involving both humans and animals. After analysing all the available evidence, the EFSA’s reviewing panel concluded that steviol glycosides are not carcinogenic or toxic and do not pose a risk to pregnancy or children.
    You can make a case for saying that all foodstuffs, natural or not, are poisonous. Honey for example is certainly poisonous in my opinion. It has some beneficial qualities but is just as fattening as sugar. Please come back to the discussion when you can find the book and give us exact figures.

    Stevia was included because, despite it having zero calories & being natural, it causes insulin spikes similar to artificial sweeteners. Didn’t write the book, but perhaps Dr Fung should have entitled that chapter non-sugar sweeteners.
    Anyhow, didn’t say stevia is dangerous, nor poisonous. But if your goal is to lose/maintain weight via a 5/2, or other diet that attempts to reduce/control insulin levels, then consumption of stevia, or other sweeteners, is likely counter productive according to research on the subject. That is what I meant when I said long term consumption of stevia may not be a great idea (seeing how this is a forum for the 5/2 diet).
    I borrowed the book from the library & am away from home so don’t have easy access to it. I will see what I can dig up,

    So how do I sweeten my porridge, bcjmmc? I have been using stevia for 2 years or so and I have lost the weight but am back on the diet because I put some weight back on – I didn’t have a plan for maintenance (I have now). I am vegetarian and very careful about food. I go low carb whenever possible as well as counting calories when I’m dieting and I really check labels on food. I try to avoid fruit too, as that has lots of fructose (=sugar) and vegetables have most of the same benefits as fruit.

    I’m likely an exception, but I don’t add anything to oatmeal other than flax or chia seeds, sometimes a bit of fruit (not on fast days) where I will have a boiled egg on the side. As I read once – “only someone of Scottish heritage can eat unsweetened oatmeal!”
    My background is that I have a very sweet tooth. Growing up, we always had dessert on the table but I was very skinny (growing, farm chores, sports) with a BMI of 19.5. That ballooned to 29/30 in university & fluctuated around there until my early 20s when I decided I had to do something (most of my family are type 2 diabetics). Got it down to 25-26 by cutting out sugar – no sugar in coffee, no desserts except on special occasions, etc. I found that if I avoid sugar I don’t get cravings but once I have one sweet I want to binge. Started the 5/2 in Oct 16 to lose belly fat & improve my blood sugar levels (primarily). Currently have BMI of approximately 22 (age late 50s).
    Anyhow, got hold of the book. Fung has 2 things to say on stevia.
    “The next big thing to hit the market was stevia. Stevia is extracted from the leaves of Stevia rebaudiana, a plant that is native to SA. It has 300 times the sweetness of sugar (in extracted form) & a minimal effect on blood glucose. Widely used in Japan since 1970, it has recently become available in NA. Both agave and sweeteners derived from stevia are highly processed. In that regard, they are not any better than sugar itself – a natural compound derived from sugar beets.”
    “The important question is this: Do artificial sweeteners increase insulin levels? Sucralose raises insulin by 20 percent, despite the fact that it contains no calories and no sugar. This insulin-raising effect has also been shown for other artificial sweeteners, including the “natural” sweetener stevia. Despite having a minimal effect on blood sugars, both aspartame and stevia raised insulin levels higher even than table sugar (ref 14). Artificial sweeteners that raise insulin should be expected to be harmful, not beneficial. Artificial sweeteners may decrease calories and sugar, but not insulin. Yet it is insulin that drives weight gain and diabetes.”
    Ref 14 – Anton S.D. Et al. Effects of stevia, aspartame, and sucrose on food intake, satiety, and postprandial glucose and insulin levels. Appetite, 2010 Aug 55(1):37-43

    Don’t think this is the final word on the subject as there are a lot of conflicting articles on the web – sorting through those & trying to determine who sponsored them, etc, is beyond what I want to do. Most agree that stevia causes insulin secretion, but they differ on the effect this has on the body. Some claim that stevia helps reduce insulin resistance, but I’m not sure how that come to that conclusion.

    So, as I said in my original post – long term use of stevia MAY not be a great idea. Best to review some of the studies & decide for yourself. I would also add that everyone is different & your bodies response to consuming stevia should be factored in.

    @markmywordz. Just because something is safe for human consumption doesn’t make it good to have. The jury is out about stevia and depending on what science you want to believe in you will “blindly” follow it to the exclusion of all the other data.

    Here is a paper that added stevia and sugar in a controlled diet. The stevia produced a lower glucose response post eating from a diet with supposedly the same calories/glucose content. Now you have to ask yourself, if the glucose content of the meal was the same and the meal with stevia produced less glucose in the blood stream post eating, where did the glucose go? it had to go somewhere. So does stevia produce a larger insulin response so that excess glucose is sent to the liver and then stored as fat? If your primary aim is to reduce weight then stevia might be working against you.

    You could take the safer option and slowly train your taste buds away from sweetness. On the rare occasions that I have a treat I now find them to be too sickly sweet. My wife recently made a banana cake using a quarter of the sugar that the recipe called for. Both I and my wife still found the cake too sickly sweet. I doubt we would have even been able to swallow the cake had she made it with the recommended quantity of sugar. By all means have stevia is it allows you to eat foods that you find unpalatable otherwise.


    The use of stevia was merely a suggestion given to me from somebody else on another forum from this site. She has been using it and has found it works for her.
    At the point of recommendation I had not tried it.
    I personally don’t like the taste, I don’t think it’s any better tasting than other artificial sweeteners, so won’t be using it at all!

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