Monday, August 6, 2012

Day 13 of 40 - Too Sweet!

I've been meaning to start drinking my licorice root extract tea for several weeks now, but I just kept forgetting about it. (That happens when I stick things out of site in my cupboards.) I know it's important to help my adrenals heal, but here's the problem:

It's so sweet!

I first thought maybe I was imagining things, until I read this article. I'll save you a lot of reading - just check out this paragraph:

How does this take the place of cake again?
Back to that taste. When you think of licorice, you may think of that bitter taste found in black licorice candy or fennel seeds -- savory, not sweet like a chocolate bar. But licorice actually tastes sweeter than sugar, which is why it is also called "sweet root" -- 50 times sweeter than sugar to be exact. The active compound in licorice root is glycyrrhizin (or glycyrrhizic acid), which provides the taste. Brewing up a glass of this tea to enjoy after a meal or while sitting on the couch in place of that bowl -- or pint -- of ice cream *no judgment here) will save you some calories. Plus, you don't need any added sweeteners.

With my newly-adapted tastebuds, I'm having a hard time drinking this stuff. It's way too sweet! I actually kind of feel like I'm cheating on my Whole30 by drinking it. I know it doesn't contain calories so it's not actually spiking my blood sugar, but I'm still not sure. Thoughts? I'm going to try again to find licorice root in capsule form, but considering how many stores I checked last time (in two different cities), I'm not optimistic.

Breakfast: Sauteed kale with scrambled eggs and ground sausage meat with cherry tomatoes. My mouth gets HAPPY when I eat that combination! Also two cups of half-decaf* with coconut milk.
Lunch: A cup of licorice tea and a bowl of chicken salad - a baked chicken breast mixed with half an avocado, some homemade mayo, curry powder and salt. (Gee, that sounds an awful lot like my tuna salad, doesn't it...?)
Supper: A bowl of soup (minus the honey!) with about 1/3 of a large chicken breast shredded and stirred in.
Snacks: Three dates and a few macadamia nuts. I may have some fruit later this evening - I've got a giant cantaloupe and a big bag of cherries waiting for me.

*I've been trying to only drink decaf these days - so when I say I had half-decaf it's code for "I got VERY little sleep last night."


  1. Hi Jac,
    So, tell me more about this licorice root extract tea? I've noticed it as an ingredient in other teas that I have but haven't seen it as a tea on it's own? Does it taste anything like traditional black licorice? Like Ouzo or Sambuca? Not like those All Sorts licorice candy that you can get that taste like tar? I would be very interested to try it.

    1. I was *really* hoping it would taste like black licorice, but it really doesn't have much flavour - just sweetness. The aroma is earthy and grassy, and the initial flavour is as well, then about a half a second later BAM! the sweetness takes over! I'm sure I'll be able to get used to it, but it was a total shock to my Whole30-ified taste buds! (We found it in the organic section at Superstore when we were on the east coast.)

  2. I was inspired by all your sautéed kale as a side and made it myself today. I usually use it in frittata, but I loved it on its own. Good call! I am a spinach maniac, and this reminded me of that, but better - more chew. Thanks!

  3. Thoughts on licorice root while nursing? I haven't slept in 2 years, weightlifting right now, taking my vitamins, addicted to coffee, brutally exhausted... maybe I should add this into the mix?!

    I found frozen kale in the health food section in the grocery store... obviously more expensive but I huge time saver in the mornings!

    1. Alexis, the box doesn't say to avoid the tea while nursing. It does have a substantial list of contraindications though, so you may want to check it out further.


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