Holy crap, it’s New Year’s Day. Wow.
It’s 2018, and now Books & Tea is 2.5 years old. 2017 was kind of a mess for my mental health and organization/time management skills so I didn’t post as much as I wanted. On the plus side, right before the holidays, I finally got a diagnosis for the digestive issues that have been plaguing me for the past few years: Irritable Bowel Syndrome.
I’ve been reading up on IBS for the past week or so as a result. I’ve also been learning about the low-FODMAP diet through things like the Monash FODMAP app and low-FODMAP cookbooks. For the first few months of the year, I’m going to try an elimination diet (to the best of my ability) to determine what my food triggers are.
One wrinkle to this is that the research on how tea relates to low-FODMAP diets is unclear. Here’s what the Monash app tells me when I search for recommendations about tea:
- Green tea is considered “safe” to drink in the low-FODMAP diet.
- Black tea can be considered safe, unsafe, or of moderate safety depending on whether it’s brewed weak or strong, or whether it’s brewed with water or with milk — and depending on whether it’s straight black tea or a masala chai blend.
- Oolong tea is considered unsafe to drink.
- Rooibos is safe, but chamomile isn’t.
- Fennel tea is unsafe to drink, but fennel bulbs, fennel fronds, and fennel seeds are all safe to eat.
In other words, it’s all over the map! I’m especially curious about why green tea is good and black tea is okay, but oolong is considered bad, even though oolong is in between black and green tea in terms of oxidation. It makes very little sense.
So I’m not sure how many tea reviews I’ll write this year. I certainly have a backlog of teas to taste and reviews to finish, so I’ll try to do what I can. But I will continue to write about books; in particular, I’ll be interviewing a bunch of Canadian SF/F authors, talking about their recent and upcoming works, and letting you know about cool new releases.
In the meantime, with the holidays in full swing, I got a chance to sit down, relax, and do a full inventory of my tea collection. The last time I did this was 2 years ago, and things have not gotten any better since then. In fact, it’s even larger and more unwieldy. So let me show you my shame: here’s my cleaned-out cabinet in all its glory.
Total number of teas in my cabinet: 166
Total weight of all teas: 5,226 grams, 1 blooming tea, and 129 individually-wrapped bags. That’s about 11.5 pounds!
Breaking it down even further, here’s what things look like:
|Tea Type||Number of Varieties||Weight in Grams|
|Herbal||24||1156.9 (plus 26 bags)|
|White||11||167.24 (plus 16 bags)|
|Green — Unflavoured||3||19.9|
|Green — Flavoured||17||517.5 (plus 24 bags and 1 blooming tea)|
|Black — Unflavoured||10||466.1 (plus 5 bags)|
|Black — Flavoured||32||665.1 (plus 58 bags)|
Good god, I have no idea if I’ll be able to drink it all. If you want me to mail you some, send me a message! I need all the help I can get.