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Thread: Where is barley tea (mugicha) on the gluten sensitivity spectrum?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Nevada, USA

    Where is barley tea (mugicha) on the gluten sensitivity spectrum?

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    Ok, I'll be honest, I'm trying to justify my favorite non-caffeinated, non-sweetened beverage: iced mugicha. It's basically roasted barley soaked in water.

    How bad is this in the overall grain/phytate spectrum? You know, where wheat is satan and white rice is benign empty calories. Or maybe a better metaphor would be lactose intolerance, where milk makes you want to die, heavy cream isn't bad, and ghee is fine.

    If it's still a phytate-laden beverage, would there be any natural way to neutralize the phytates?
    ~elaine. twitter, primal journal.

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  2. #2
    MFSUNSHINE's Avatar
    Hey Elaine,

    Did you ever find out any info on this?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    I love barley tea and am very interested in its primal rating. can someone please advise

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Barley contains gluten, so I would put it in the same category as wheat.
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  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
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    Quote Originally Posted by elainevdw View Post
    If it's still a phytate-laden beverage, would there be any natural way to neutralize the phytates?
    I doubt the phytate would be a problem. I think your post title was nearer the mark -- it would be the gluten. if you're at all gluten-sensitive then it's the gluten that would be the problem.

    Googling mugicha ... well, it seems you can get Buckwheat tea:

    Buckwheat Tea, 1/4 lb package

    Buckwheat doesn't contain gluten.

    OTOH, Prof. Cordain says buckwheat tends to get a free pass in the West because it isn't much consumed there and hasn't, unlike the predominant cereals in that geographical area, been much studied. In Asia, where consumption of buckwheat is common, life-threatening anaphylactic shock in response to buckwheat is, apparently, not uncommon.

    Applying the evolutionary science template -- any grain or seed is likely to have chemicals that functionally protect it by harming potential predators.

    I guess barley tea was probably originally used by the Japanese as a substitute for coffee on grounds of availability and cost. I don't know -- you'd have to ask a food historian -- but that would be my guess. Nowadays, in the West it would be sold as a coffee substitute on account people worry about taking in too much caffeine. Well, OK, I understand that motive, but while over-consumption of caffeinated beverages isn't going to be a good thing, a cup or two of coffee probably won't do most people much harm and probably will actually do them some good. Maybe the substitute is going out of the frying pan into the fire.

    So why not just go with the coffee?

    OTOH, if you're really attached to the barley tea, use the Robb Wolf approach: i.e., eliminate it for 30 days, then re-introduce it. and see how you feel.

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