Tea Is Perfect for Plant-Based Diets
The plant-based diet has legions of fans because it is healthful, easy to adopt, and saves animals from abuse and/or slaughter. So, what beverages should one drink on such a diet? Fortunately, there are many wonderful choices: fruit or vegetable juices, water (of course,) coffee, and our personal favorite, TEA!
Here are four great reasons to market true teas and fine herbals to your current (and future) customers who have embraced plant-based diets:
Herbal teas are exceptionally good examples of plant-based beverages because they’re made from flowers such as chamomile, jasmine, hibiscus, rose petals, tree bark (rooibos), herbs and roots like ginger, peppermint, or lemongrass, tree leaves like the honeybush, and a great range of fruits. The potential for their use in beverages, and to cook with, in a plant-based diet are endless.
Among the educational points to share:
Our Masters Teas are an exceptional choice to offer this market. Our Masters Teas are grown with care for the land, water, and air; harvested with precision, and processed with years of experience, frequently by hand. Best of all, these selections brew up to ambrosial experiences like no other. www.mastersteas.com
Plant-Based Milk Substitutes:
Got milk? Goat and cow’s milks are not included in some plant-centered diets, especially 100% vegan, but they are fine for vegetarians who consume dairy products. The choices for alternative plant-based "milks" are many, readily accessible at major grocery stores (or your shop) and include, among others: oat, almond, rice, coconut, or soy sources and readily accessible at any major grocery store (or your shop.) All these alternative selections for animal milks are made from plant sources and water.
Ironically, some artificial creamers could be considered plant-based, but they do have hydrogenized oils to make the taste “creamy.” Read the labels as they frequently contain artificial ingredients which some consumers do not like to consume. Some brands of artificial creamers may contain Sodium Caseinate which is a cow’s milk derivative. A growing number of vegan creamer brands are entering the market, most of which use coconut milk, perfect for the plant-based dieter.
Not all sweeteners are suitable for a plant-based diet. Honey is considered an "animal product" as they're made by honeybees even though the diet of the bees is the nectar from flowers.
Plant-based diet-friendly sweeteners include the traditional cane sugar or beet sugar sources. Depending upon how much of the molasses is retained, they can be purchased as white, light brown or dark brown sugars in granular form, or as sugar cubes. Molasses-heavy selections include Jaggery, Demerara, Sucanat, Piloncilo, Turbinado, and Muscovado are all suitable for a plant-based diet and have a wide range of earthy flavors suitable for both cooking and baking or sweetening tea as a beverage.
Other plant-based sweeteners to consider are lo han extract made from the green gourd known as monk fruit. A little goes a long way as it is 150x as sweet as cane sugar. Maple syrup and coconut nectar are widely available as are various forms of blackstrap molasses made from sugar cane.
Stevia, extracted from the leaves of the Stevia rebaudiana plant, native to some parts of South America. It is 200-400x sweeter than cane sugar, so take caution when using in loose form or purchase items in packets that are suitable for a single serving. It is available granulated like white sugar.
The newest natural sweetener is yacon syrup made from the roots of the yacon plant. It has a caramel taste and is about half as sweet as honey.
CAVEAT: Customers new to monk fruit, stevia or yacon should be advised that all three are intensely sweet, and portions should be considerably lower than cane or beet sugar. Also, not everyone can digest them well, so side effects are not uncommon such as diarrhea or indigestion. Variations of cane and beet sugars with high amounts of molasses are easily digested.