I don't think Caffeine is the only bad thing in Coke and other soft drinks,
My heart doctor tells me that carbonated water is very damaging to your heart,
and it almost took my life. When I was a kid over 80 years ago, we didn't
have money to buy carbonted beverages, however, we did make Rootbeer using
Bakers yest to cause the fermentation of the syrup and sugar and water. It was
yummy and a great treat on the rare occasions that we had it on special
occasions. As my mother use to tell me, when in doubt just say no, so that is
good advise for all of us wanting to know if we should drink a coke or not.
Is coffee addictive? YesIs alcohol addictive? YesAre drugs
addictive? YesDoes the lord want us to be addicted to something?
NoCan everyone one drink in moderate? NoConclusion, we command
you to stay away, or you can't enter into the house of the lord, or certain
places in heaven.
To not drink caffeine, is a personal choice, and a great one. However, to
preach that from the pulpit is an apostasy, as it is not authorized by the
brethren. Elder Cook in the March 2003 Ensign (one of my favorite articles)
states "Certain members have wanted to add substantially to
various doctrines. An example might be when one advocates additions to the Word
of Wisdom that are not authorized by the Brethren and proselytes others to adopt
these interpretations. If we turn a health law or any other principle into a
form of religious fanaticism, we are looking beyond the mark".So
what's prohibited? Coffee, Tea, Alcohol Tobacco, and illegal drugs. If
the Spirit directs you otherwise, great! But that is for you, and you alone.
There are more harmful ingredients in tea and coffee besides caffeine.
Let's start with tannic acid. Tannin disrupts digestion, works as a
diuretic, and has a narcotic effect on the mind. And what about strychnine and
cyanide? Caffeine makes the drinker urinate more frequently, but leaves behind
the uric acid to cause problems in your system. Soda, with or without caffeine,
contains phosphorous that leaches calcium from your bones, affecting bone
density. I know of a young man whose family consumed soda like most others
consume milk or water, and who was a high school wrestler. One day on the mat,
he heard a cracking in both his arms. His bones snapped, and the doctor was
astounded at the results of the bone density scan in such a young, athletic kid.
There are just so many chemicals we need to avoid to stay healthy, so why
introduce them into your system?
After watching the daily stream of Diet Coke drinkers from my office window make
their way to the neighborhood convenience store at noon (and sometimes at breaks
too) to refill their 50 gallon drums of that "favorite soda," I came to
the conclusion that this was more than a mission to satiate thirst! No, there
was nothing scientific in my research methodology, but I don't see the same
pressure on the Sprite and/or root beer supplies. If you need it to wake up,
reduce headaches, stay alert, or feel "normal", maybe, just maybe, it is
more than a satisfying soda for you! Agency is a funny thing. One of the
freedoms it grants is the freedom to give it away.
If someone really took the time to understand the word of wisdom (great title by
the way), they would understand that caffeine is just the beginning of
substances forbidden by the revelation.
The Church never said it was ok to drink caffeine. It only corrected a false
statement made my NBC that caffeine was a substance mentioned in the D&C.
But how many conference talks to you need to read to understand that church
members are to be alert and attentive to avoid anything that can become
addictive and habit forming (in the context of physical health). Caffeine
definitely falls into that category of "addictive". I think
it is funny that people are taking their cue about caffeine consumption from
reporters and newspapers, not church leaders.
When we Latter Day Saints really, honestly, no kiddingly believe that God
Almighty, the Creator of the universe, the world, and our lives---when He asks
us to avoid hot drinks, then why would we ever whine about it? If He takes the
time to ask, I am going to do it if humanly possible. I admit I
like the caffeine high that banishes fatigue for a few minutes, but I do not
like the subsequent low. Overall, I feel better just having water and eating
right. Sugar also comes with a high and a low, and lack of exercise has a
chronic low. My average level of energy is better than the caffeine highs and
lows. So I avoid it.I think the caffeine lows may come with an
emotional burden that stresses relationships.I like what Pres.
Uchtdorf said: do not judge me because my sins are different than yours. Let
us not gossip even to ourselves about another’s appearance of evil.
Green Tea is the same plant as regular black tea, just not the fermented
version. If you say it's okay to drink it because it's decaf, then you
are admitting caffeine is the reason we don't drink tea, which the Church
is apparently now saying is okay to consume.Oh, and PhoenixAZ, we
can take care of the hungry and still talk about other things, such as health
issues. I believe it's called multi-tasking, although I have to admit
I'm not that good at it. :)
The church is guided by the dictates of politics and money that fluctuate with
commercial markets and public opinion. If one is not happy with the church
today, just hang in there; tomorrow it will change and there will be some
happier and some not so happy. If one lives long enough it will all be
I find it interesting with such conversations how many people gravitate towards
an attitude of justification. Since there are fat members of the church I can
drink beer. Or since not all members have a garden, then it is okay for me to
have a cigarette. And the list goes on and on ---- we didn't know about the
health benefits of wine, so that should now be okay. Again, the Word of Wisdom
is being boiled down to just words and a fight over how much is spelled out and
how much is implied.As with any commandment, we are blessed when we
sincerely undertake to live it. This doesn't imply that we are perfect in
all aspects of life, it means that we are making a conscious effort to become
better; not to see what we can get away with and still sneak in under the
wire.Science could prove conclusively that sex outside of marriage
has great health benefits and will add fifty years to my life. I still
wouldn't cheat on my wife because I have made covenants not to do so
regardless of social or health benefits. Much more is at stake.
Downtime - quit describing my driving habits to the letter. Of course, maybe
part of the reason I drive so fast is that there's a Coke waiting for me at
the end of it. Either at home or work (I have the early shift - no customers
want to deal with me until the caffine has kicked in). I must admit there is a
certain sense of relief now that the church has a formal stance on the issue (no
need to confess it in temple recommend interviews, although the confession has
usually been treated with a grain of salt).
The “Word of Wisdom” was given as a Principal with a Promise, a
guiding principle whereby all decisions could be made regarding what should and
should not be eaten or taken into our bodies in any form. There is an attending
promise to obeying that principle.The principle is 1: There are evil
and designing people on this earth today who desire to enslave individuals
through addictions that thereby benefit them financially. 2: There are
substances which are good for our bodies and there are some not good for our
bodies. Everything that grows on this Earth must be used for its designed
purpose and misuse can result in tragedy or addictions. 3: The short list
of do's and don'ts is only as reference and is not a complete list.
The list of things to eat and drink is actually much longer than the list of
things not to be partaking of. 4: Everyone can obey this rule and it is
made for the weakest of all Saints.With these principles in mind it
is easy to see how everything digestible may be judged. Anything that causes
addictions in any form is to be avoided.
This brings to my mind the following. S. Dilworth Young came to a conference.
There were about 10 of us in a room waiting for him for some teaching. He
was a man of few words and a very able teacher. As he entered the room he
asked: "Does anyone hear drink Coke?" Several hands went up. Then he
said: "Do you question whether it is right or not?" Several, almost in
unison, said: "Yes. Please tell us the answer". Elder Young said:
"If you wonder about it, why do you do it?" End of the conversation.
in regards to RanchHand's Agreed. How can one argue against
Caffeine free green tea?
gigi-gorgeous and others of the same mindset. Taking anti-depressants drugs
legally prescribed and administered by a physician is nobody elses business. I
am apalled that so many of my fellow LDS feel a need to be so judgemental of
others who may struggle with clinical depression or other mental health issues.
To change the subject I have always wondered about ice tea. Not a hot drink and
certainly not to my knowledge any health concerns. Does it even have caffeine?
What about herbal tea and green tea that is being promoted for it's health
benefits. occassionaly drink herbal tea and a soft drink such as Dr. Pepper or
even gasp a coke. So what.
This is just plain silly with all of this talk about it. Move on to something
important, people. Like starving children in this country or something.
I only drink diet cola. You know, there is an internal confilict going on.
Caffiene vs: sugar. How many of us are hypocrites, I read a few posts from some
of you, I mean, us.
We abuse and excuse ourselves about the WoW more than any other commandment.
What we need is a good stern talking to about obesity. Its one thing that we
can readily see that is being abused. Addictions, whether caffiene, alchohol,
food, sugar or anythng that creates addiction are what the wisdom is in this
commandment. The church did not change its stand on cola drinks. It has
never specified cola, still hasn't, and covers it with the word...wisdom.
If we use wisdom and avoid use and abuse of any addictive substances, we can be
safe. Cola, Dr. Pepper, Crispy creme, sugar, burgers and fries, ice cream,
prescription or over-the-counter and off-the-shelf drugs and everything else.
Weird...I'm a fully engaged active member of the Church and this kind of
opinion you keep to yourself. Caffeine in moderation is in no way a violation
of even the "spirit" of the Word of Wisdom.I shutter when I
read stuff like this because it only adds to the "weirdness" of members
of LDS Church. There are so many more important issues.I could see
an Apostle with a can of Coke in his hand and I wouldn't even think TWICE
about it. Please people, we're looking beyond the mark. These are the
kind of obedience principles that tripped up the Pharisees.
It is my understanding that The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints does
not tell its members what they can and cannot do. What a narrow concept of
religion! I will continue to use caffeine as I always have: occasionally--and by
'occasionally' I mean maybe 3 or 4 times a year when I'm having
trouble staying awake at the wheel. If the Word of Wisdom is a health code (with
both physical and spiritual benefits), then for me it's a simple matter of
determining which would be more damaging to my health: a little caffeine or a
head-on collision. I can't stress enough, however, that
I'm talking about occasional use! Word of Wisdom or no Word of Wisdom, I
can't imagine drinking caffeine on a daily or even weekly basis, and I
never use it as a substitute for sleep. I believe that if I drank the stuff
every day I would become immune to its effects and it would no longer benefit me
on those driving occasions, though admittedly I have no science to back that up.
I just wish there had been an updated revelation to the Word of Wisdom, so we
don't have to speculate on extensions of the original command with modern
beverages/substances. Personally, I think more lives could have been saved over
the last century, avoiding the high occurances of cancers such as colon,
prostate, and breast cancers in American society due to the crummy trans
fats/hydrogenated oils we consume, since the invention of hydrogenation in 1902.
Countries such as Japan, Denmark, and Holland all have significantly lower
incidents of these cancers than Britain and the US. And they have all banned
hyrogenated oils.Anyone who justifies using caffeine, or worse,
those "energy" drinks with their quadruple stimulant formula, should
keep in mind it is just a milder version of methamphetamine and does cause all
those ills already mentioned and will pay the price with bad health. At 53, I
have the bone density of a 20-year-old, and I attribute it to avoidance of
stimulants. Drink what you want, but don't try to sell me on any benefits
caroleh "What I find rather interesting about the recent statement by the
church regarding the stance on caffeine sodas is if it is ok to drink the
caffeine drinks, why are the caffeine soda's not found on any of the BYU
campuses, or in the vending machines in the Church office building or any of the
other Church facilities?"I can get Dr. Pepper at the LDS
Business College bookstore and you can order Coca-cola products at "The
Roof" restaurant in the Joseph Smith building. I think it's a Utah
If things not mentioned in the WOW are OK, I guess crack cocaine in just fine?
On the other hand, I do believe that coffee is a valuable drug/medicine (as is
caffeine) if used properly. And no, I don't believe coffee was ever
intended by the Creator to be used as a beverage- but it does have at least one
legitimate medical use- just as tobacco is for bruises and the treatment of sick
cattle. Finally, the WOW is used in the Church on two levels- first (and
somewhat superficially) to help determine temple worthiness- and second (much
more in depth) to help us live healthier and happier lives.The latter level
requires lifelong study. RAJ
What I find rather interesting about the recent statement by the church
regarding the stance on caffeine sodas is if it is ok to drink the caffeine
drinks, why are the caffeine soda's not found on any of the BYU campuses,
or in the vending machines in the Church office building or any of the other
Church facilities? I will say, I was quite surprised to find that caffeine
sodas are available at the Nauvoo Cafe. I even found it odd that the Carriage
House Cafe at the Triad Center does not sell Caffeine Sodas. This has been in
place for many many years. I remember as a youth many years ago attending youth
conference at BYU and begging my leaders to take us off campus for a coke with
caffeine. If indeed caffeine sodas are no big deal and not against
the word wisdom, why have they been banned from all of the LDS Church facilities
and BYU? Just a question.
This whole scenario is a little scarry. Actually when I suffered a heart attack
in 1997, I was advised by the Dr that the carbonation in any soda is very
harmful to the body.It takes the oxygen out of the system. I was a caffine free
Soda drinker until that point. At 86 years of age, and with relatively good
health for my age, I still run two business, have two major callings in my Ward,
and am grateful for the blessings of Church membership.I firmly
believe that we individually need to make the joice to either follow what we are
taught by the Prophet in order to enjoy the many blessings that come with old
age. Would you eat raw liver to improve the iron level in your
blood. My mother did rather than drink Port Wine. She was a great example to
all of us to live the Word of Wisdom.
RE: SFC Dennis: Do not let anyone judge you by what you eat or drink(Wine), or
with regard to a religious festival, a New Moon celebration or a Sabbath day.
These are a shadow of the things that were to come; the reality, however, is
found in Christ. (Col 2: 16:-17). Not that which goes into the mouth
defiles a man; but that which comes out of the mouth, this defiles a man.(Mt
15:11).RE: Ghost Writer, Grape juice will do exactly the same
thing. The alcohol has nothing to do with the health benefits? Paul
disagrees,Stop drinking only water, and use a little wine because of your
stomach and your frequent illnesses.(1Tim 5:23 NIV) and the Apostles drank wine,
Acts 2:13, Others mocking said, These men are full of new wine.
I love it. If caffeinated Pepsi and Coke are sold in the Wilkinson Center at
BYU, then we can assume we have a free pass. Years ago I heard it said by a
Coke-sipping BYU professor that it is not sold there for one
reason......."TO APPEASE THE ZEALOTS!!!!"
People get so hung up on the caffeine part of soft drinks that they ignore the
real killers: The high fructose corn syrup and the preservatives. The high
fructose corn syrup has been shown to not only cause more weight gain than cane
sugar but causes the body to build more fat, including fat in the abdomen, in
the blood and around the heart. The preservatives have been shown to be
carcinogenic.As far as coffee consumption, I didn't grow up LDS
but I never got the coffee habit. Having been in the workplace and seen the
people who are constantly "needing" coffee morning, noon, and afternoon,
I'm so glad I never started. I'm so grateful to a mom who said, even
though she had never heard of the LDS church or the Word of Wisdom, "You
don't want to start drinking that stuff."
Lets all remember that the W OF W is just that and not a commandment. I prefer
to follow the W of W as best I can. God took the time to advise us so lets
follow his advice.
RanchHand Huntsville, UT, I talked with my Doctor about the benefits you are
talking about and the health benefits you are talking about comes from the
grapes and you can get the same benefits from grape juice and avoid the alcohol
consumption in the wine and we all know alcohol is not good for you and very
Clarification is good but does not change anything. When Joseph Fielding Smith
explained caffeine as an addicting substance, he said it was not part of the
word of wisdom but that he would personally stay away from addicting substances.
It has grown in Mormon folklore to be much bigger than that. The word of wisdom
has not changed at all with this new explanation on caffeine.
I recently read and pondered verse 2 of the 89th section. It surprised me to
realize the reason given for the Word of Wisdom. It seems to me the reason is
" the temporal salvation of all saints in the latter days". To me it
means good health as well as staying alive as defining salvation. The
warnings also refer to the latter days. In the days the 89th section was
revealed, hard, illegal drugs were not known. To me the revelation is more
relevant today than ever. I do not want to have my freedoms taken through
addiction of either mind or body. The section would probably be much longer
today if it was to be specific rather than a word of wisdom and encouragement to
follow our promptings.
I find it revealing that there's a blog commenting on a comment on the
Church's blog. This appears to be a veiled attempt of saying,
"regardless of what was said by the Church, we all still know that dirinking
cola drinks is 'naughty'" GIVE ME A BREAK! There are more
important things to worry about than whether or not he or she is drinking a
cola! Oh... and let's try and get past the R rated movie thing too.
When someone disagrees with things they feel they can cite the Bible and say we
are becoming like the Pharisees. What they fail to understand is the
significance of the color white or why the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day
Saints has requested that dark colas be removed from activities. Yes, some can
say it is the caffiene and what not. To me it is the failure of the parents to
teach correct principles in the home relying on the Priesthood leaders to do
this for them. They are the ones who are negligent in their responsibilities.
I quit drinking Pepsi many years ago because of certain aspects that my body
suffered. Again a person who must be directed in all things is a slothful
servant and may be damned for their slothfulness. Parents who fail to teach
their children correct principles are slothful servants of the Lord.
Re:CanyonTrekkerI agree with your son. I hate the white shirt
uniform, the emphasis on caffeine. We are becoming like the Pharisees who
focused on the trivia instead of the Spirit. There is evidence caffeine can be
helpful for headaches and asthma, lower incidence of Parkinsons disease etc.
That said, i generally avoid caffeine because sometimes it makes me
Americans have always had access to plentiful supplies of relatively cheap
sugar. In the 19th-century, coffee and tea were not sophisticated beverages,
rather, they were vehicles for sugar. Some frontier soldiers were issued 5-pound
bags of sugar and 2-pound bags of coffee. Perhaps the more important part of the
Word of Wisdom was the advice against eating fruit out of season. It is
unreasonable to expect that Joseph would have given us a perfectly detailed map
of the future. We must think and pray about prophecy.
There is some new research indicating caffeine as interfering with
anti-depression medications. When a medication stops working, it usually
corresponds to a larger than normal caffeine ingestion. Caffeine also seems to
interfere with spiritual communication for many people, as all addictive
substances do. Caffeine is also part of the sleep deprivation problem in
America, which endangers us on the highways. Why would you want to give children
and teenagers something that will make it hard for them to go to sleep? The
latest research on red wine shows that it is the grape polyphenols in the wine
that are beneficial to the body, not the alcohol. Non-alcoholic wine works much
better to lower blood pressure. Eat red grapes or drink grape juice to get the
benefit.There is much more in the Word of Wisdom than the prohibitions.
Spend more energy getting to sleep early and rising early, eating only a little
meat, eating plenty of fruits and vegetables in season, eating plenty of whole
grains and herbs. Walk and run, exercise your body. Then you can enjoy the great
blessings promised in the Word of Wisdom.
My big question: Will BYU now serve beverages containing caffeine in the
Wilkinson Center? That is the defining consideration :-) Other than that,
common sense should prevail and the wine companies LOVE it when people quote the
studies they sponsor which state that drinking "a little wine with
dinner" is healthy. Grape juice will do exactly the same thing. The alcohol
has nothing to do with the health benefits.
A Hershey's kiss has 1 mg of caffeine, so those heathens eating chocolate
candy bars, chocolate chip cookies, drinking hot cocoa, or indulging in
chocolate pie, shakes, etc., who believe that the WOW means not drinking a Coke
or Pepsi need to repent. If the WOW bans caffeine then there are a whole lot of
sinners in Zion.
RE: Julie gluten free mother,It's up for personal interpretation. No one
should judge another person for drinking caffeine. True,Wine was used by
Noah, Gen 9:20,21 . Melchizedek, Gen 14:18. Isaac Gen 27:25. Jesus 2:1-11, He
turns water into wine not wine into water And Mt 11:19.. Timothy 1Tim 5:23.
Mogen David is popular for the Jewish Passover in modern times.
I'm a convert of 50 years and have drunk some caffeinated drinks for all of
them. I've drunk them with GAs and others. The Church has NEVER said that
we ought not to drink them. Some LDS understand the WoW in a way that makes them
uncomfortable drinking them. Good for them. Others, like me, understand the WoW
differently and feel fine with caffeinated drinks (but don't drink tea and
coffee because those have been specifically forbidden, without an explanation
why). Good for us. If this is something that bothers you, grow up and focus on
@ Mayfair ,Any beverage that contains ingredients harmful to the body should be
avoided." LDS Church, Priesthood Bulletin, Feb. 1972, p.4.? Wine was
used by Noah, Gen 9:20,21 . Melchizedek, Gen 14:18. Isaac Gen 27:25. Jesus
2:1-11, He turns water into wine not wine into water And Mt 11:19.. Timothy
1Tim 5:23. Mogen David is popular for the Jewish Passover in modern times.
Some have already eloquently stated feelings similar to my own about the over
emphasis on WOW proscriptions and the appearance of evil etc so thank you for
your comments.I'd like to add my two centsPerhaps
the main point of the WOW is about the temporal salvation of adherents.
Physical health is one portion, but financial well being is another. Brigham
Young emphasized this point earlier in Utah's history as so much money was
flowing out of a fledgling economy for tea and coffee. In an individual
situation soda and fast food habits can suck one's cash up as quickly as a
smoking habit. So a good question might be to ask is how much money is going
out of your pockets for these kinds of things.I'm glad someone
mentioned the polyphynol article as well. Polyphynols are also in beer. If the
removal of alcohol from wine does not diminish the polyphynol benefit then
I'd expect the same would hold for non-alcoholic beer. We then have
another reason to tip the O'douls or whatever mild barley drink you prefer.
The Church’s statement simply reiterates what has always been the official
position: null.If you teach that caffeine is against the Word of
Wisdom, you are teaching false doctrine and may be subject to Church
discipline.If you teach that caffeine is not against the Word of
Wisdom, you are teaching false doctrine and may be subject to Church
discipline.It’s that simple.
I personally don't see how ingesting any drug for no good reason would be
in compliance with the word of wisdom. Especially drug such as caffeine which is
in the same family as cocaine. Central nervous system stimulant. Drugs have
their purpose. Ingesting drugs for no good reason is ridiculous. That's my
"....but the leaders of the Church have advised, and we do now specifically
advise, against the use of any drink containing harmful habit-forming drugs
under circumstances that would result in acquiring the habit. Any beverage that
contains ingredients harmful to the body should be avoided." LDS Church,
Priesthood Bulletin, Feb. 1972, p.4Since this was good enough for my
Coke-addicted mother and Pepsi-addicted father, who quit cold turkey to in their
words "follow the counsel of the brethren" in the early 70's, its
good enough for me (and has been my since my last soda fountain made cherry Coke
It's up for personal interpretation. No one should judge another person for
drinking caffeine until they are living every commandment perfectly their self.
Many commandments have some gray area. Do you pay tithing on your gross income
or net income? Is saying heck as bad as saying hell? Is it O.K. to be late for
church every as long as at least you are going?
I have a rebel son that...-Drinks coke from the can-Wears a blue shirt on Sunday-Attends U of U football gamesIt causes such chaos in our house, but secretly I'm laughing
inside. Gotta love living in Utah.
GiGi "gorgeous,"No, being obese is not ok. Utah is ranked
approximately 6th in the nation for being healthy. Anti-depressants are
over-prescribed here, I know two people who were given a script for them after a
DIVORCE! They are also given for anxiety. IT's hard not to have anxiety
when you're Mormon and people are quetstioning everything you do or say.
The appearance of evil regarding soda pop? Really?Personally, we
don't have soda in the house. We just don't buy it. However, we love
to choose the pop of our choice at the ball game and the movies. Despite being in the Bishopric, I arrive to work on occasion with my 7-11 (or
Starbucks) cup of almond cinnamon hot chocolate without thinking about what is
the appearance of the cup.So, what do people think of us with our
cups? I really don't think anyone has noticed. Nor do I care.
Looks like what we need to be doing is talking to historians, not religious
experts. I notice a couple of contributors seem to not understand the place that
medication may play in mental health treatment, as well. Please, do not confuse
taking those meds with self-medication--there is a huge difference. Also,
adherence to WoW doesn't preclude health problems, any more than
disobedience or utter disregarding of it causes them. Some people with the worst
habits in the world never have a sick day, others who never allow a bad food to
enter their systems are extremely ill and take boatloads of meications. As is
says, it rains on the just and the unjust. Most of us not only fall in the
middle, but don't stand in the middle of downpours, just spring showers.
Such is life.
I believe in God. I believe He knows all things. I believe He loves us all. I
believe He is entirely capable and willing to let us know what is good. I
believe that a committee of the most intelligent and well-studied scientists in
all the world would fall way short of "knowing all things."I
served an LDS Mission to Germany in 1970-71. When this new controversy over the
Word of Wisdom came out, my first thought was how this church was describing
"hot drinks" as "coffee and tea" when on my mission it was
"Bean Coffee and Black Tea" and "Black Tea" was understood to be
the tea made from the specific plant, whether green or ripe, hot or iced.For myself, some things are obviously upsetting to my body, and
carbonated drinks are among them. Chocolate was less obvious at first, and it
took having my doctor tell me, "No caffeine;" and my asking,
"including chocolate?" "yes." Then 3 months withdrawal, before I
could, "...run and not be weary; walk and not faint." Actually, what
chocolate has, is a drug similar to caffeine, Theobromine, or "food of the
gods," harmful to cats and me.
How many steps can you take on Sunday? Silly question, yes. Didn't Christ
teach that his mission is more important than silly rules that don't really
matter in the grand scheme.What soda can I drink? No response from
the Church. Please, I beg you to tell my neighbor how much soda is evil. The LDS Church didn't want to come out with the coffee and tea rule
either but the members begged for it. Please, stop begging and serve the real
missions of your church.
Ranch Hand,You're right, there are many wonderful substances
found on planet earth. However, the science behind it doesn't always get it
right, and if you wait long enough, it often changes. This is from TODAY's
news:Wait for it..."Red wine may reduce men's
blood pressure - but only if it's non-alcoholic" I read it on CBS news
but you can Google it to read all about it. :)
I have known people who wouldn't let their children drink IBC Root Beer
because it has the appearance of a beer bottle. People who don't allow
their children to drink any de-caf cola because it is the same appearance of
drinking cola drinks with caffeine. I believe that if the church leaders felt
that way you would not be able to get caffeine free cola in the temple
cafeteria, which you can! Be very careful as to not judge others because of the
soda they choose to drink. Let it be your own choice as to what you want or
don't want to put it your own body. Do not condemn others because they
choose to drink a Diet Coke with caffeine. I get really tired of being judged
by members and non-members alike for drinking Diet Coke because they think that
I am doing something that is against my church's guidelines. I'M NOT!
The smug and disparaging comments found on these forums are far more irritating
than any carbonated drink. The words to an old song come to mind:"Come on people now, Smile on your brother.Everybody get
together,Try to love one an other Right now."
Oh FredR says;"It all boils down to what you believe, the Word
of the Lord, or what?".Clearly Mormon's and Christians as a
whole don't follow the "Word of the Lord" as reported directly in
the Gospels: "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you" (think
Prop-8 & Amendment-3 for instance). If you won't even follow the words
that were recorded as coming directly from Jesus, then why bother to follow
words written by someone whose only word you have is his that it actually came
from "the lord"?IMO, Joseph Smith made it all up; ergo, it
isn't from "the lord".Coffee, tea, wine, etc. all have
polyphenols and such that are beneficial. Nature is wonderful. I love how she
made all these things that are GOOD for us. Your masculine deity is just
jealous and therefore prohibits Mama's good stuff.BTW; I
don't drink sodas much (anymore) because of all the sugar. Not good for
me. Polyphenols = good for me.
What your mother was teaching you, her good intentions notwithstanding, was
Pharisaism.The more attention we pay to the proverbial tithes of
mint and anise and cumin, and the more we judge each other "in meat, or in
drink, or in respect of an holyday, or of the new moon, or of the sabbath
days" (Colossians 2:16), the more our attention is turned away from the
"weightier matters of the law, judgment, mercy, and faith," and the more
we turn our back on the liberty wherewith Christ has made us free. There is a *reason* the Lord spent so much time clobbering the Pharisees. The
tendency of religious people to try and be more Catholic than the Pope may not
be the biggest problem faced by our increasingly Godless country overall, but it
is one of the problem our people has always faced. That said, I
will take Brick Oven's house-brewed root beer over Coke any day.
I don't believe that sugar or corn syrup (which is sugar) are addictive.
Yes, you might crave them, but unlike truly addictive substances, there are no
physical withdrawal symptoms when you stop eating them. Also, carbonation per se
is not bad - it is just CO2, the gas we breathe out, making the liquid fizzy.
And "artificial ingredients" aren't necessarily bad for you;
natural/organic isn't necessarily good. Snake venom and mushrooms are
certainly natural, but you wouldn't eat them.It is my understanding that
Hyrum Smith clarified that "hot drinks" are coffee and tea; the
temperature doesn't matter so much. They were called hot drinks because
everyone drank them hot. Also, note that last I knew you could get a temple
recommend if you drank decaf coffee. BTW coffee has much more caffeine than
I decided several decades ago that the bigger problem with soft drinks
containing caffeine is not the non-issue with worthiness known to be a church
policy for decades (i.e., that it's not a worthiness criterion), but
criticism felt toward those who choose to drink them by those who have decided
it constitutes is prohibited or constitutes unworthiness. Outside the
proscriptions which are both simple and non-ambiguous, the Word of Wisdom is a
wonderful, remarkable, even miraculous guide to personal physical and spiritual
health that is much more individual than societal. Thanks to a loving Heavenly
Father for giving us such a helpful guide so many years before its time, and for
providing clear guides for us through His Son, our Savior Jesus Christ, about
our dialogue and discourse one with another as His children. We shared the joy
of a new convert in her 50s last week in Long Island, New York, who finally,
after decades of trying, won her battle over nicotiene when she learned it was
an issue with God and how he blesses those with sufficient faith to overcome it
and become a new person. Would that we would all do the same.
It's a tempest in a teapot. I used to drink Coke but found that anytime I
took caffeine in any form I had a hard time sleeping that night. So I don't
use it. It has nothing to do with my religion. The basic spirit of the law is to
take good care of yourself. That I try to do. Splitting hairs and straining at
gnats is the sort of thing immature people delight in doing.
Just to bring the facts back into the discussion, the Church did _not_ say
"it is OK to drink cola." First, it wasn't the Church, it was some
Church employee writing on a Church-sponsored media blog. Second, the post
reads, "Despite what was reported, the Church revelation spelling out health
practices (Doctrine and Covenants 89) does not mention the use of caffeine. The
Church’s health guidelines prohibit alcoholic drinks, smoking or chewing
of tobacco, and 'hot drinks' — taught by Church leaders to refer
specifically to tea and coffee.*" The asterisk leads to a footnote
acknowledging that the original, more enthusiastic, post was edited, presumably
for orthodoxy.The Church stated in 1972 that “With reference
to cola drinks, the Church has never officially taken a position on this matter,
but the leaders of the Church have advised, and we do now specifically advise,
against the use of any drink containing harmful habit-forming drugs under
circumstances that would result in acquiring the habit. Any beverage that
contains ingredients harmful to the body should be avoided.” (Priesthood
Bulletin, vol.8, no.1)The recent (edited) blog post does not
contradict that earlier statement.
"Most LDS do not abide by the Word of Wisdom. Meat is not eaten
sparingly.It was presumptuous to assume that caffeine was the reason that
coffee and tea shouldn't be drunk.Given the current research touting
the health benefits of coffee and tea, I suspect now that the word of wisdom
means what it says.HOT drinks are not to be drunk. This would include hot
water and hot chocolate and hot coffee and hot tea."How
true...meat is not eaten sparingly. But yet the LDS make such a huge issue of
how THEYdon't drink Coke,etc. The whole world knows that. It is but
yet another opportunityto appear to the world as somehow "better"
than everyone else.Chocolate and sugar are also quite addictive but
yet not included by JS in the WOW.The WOW was written by a man for the
times in which he was living.Having many, many pregnancies is
frequently not in the best health interests of LDS women,yet that
Re ulvegaardIf the purpose of the Word of Wisdom is to. 'Make a
person stand out' not drinking coffee and tea is a rather strange
wayto do this don't you think? Refraining from these two drinksdoesn't garner anybody's respect or admiration.Think too
of the opportunity costs if this were true. The timespent teaching and the
effort spent adheringto this could have been better spent teaching a
person to beKind to all people, especially the unpopular. If I am not
mistakentreating other people as we would be treated is the secondgreatest commandment isn't it?
To RanchHand (and others who left similar comments):The mentioned
"benefits" of coffee and tea can be obtained from other , non-addictive
sources instead. The benefits of wine can be obtained from grape juice without
the alcohol. Anything that artifically alters your state of mind or
creates a chemical dependency should be avoided.On the subject of
caffeine: The LDS Church Handbook says : "Nor should members use harmful or
habit-forming substances except under the care of a competent physician."
Caffeine is very habit-forming. How many perople say they cannot function
without their caffeine? Clearly it is highly addictive. As suggested in the
article, we should use our moral agency to avoid things that are hrmful to the
body. While sugar and some other food items are likely harmful if overused,
they do not typically contain addictive drugs. (By the way if you want to
mention chocolate, the amount of caffeine in chocolate is miniscule compared to
caffeinated sodas or energy drinks).
Thank you Carmen, for pointing out some obvious, but often ignored ideas behind
following the WoW. Having said that, about twice a year I have a drink with
caffeine if I'm having an asthma attack. Otherwise soda consumption in
general is very limited for me. My husband has issues with scar tissue in his
esophagus due to excessive caffeine consumption when he was younger. Sometimes
this means he has to have a balloon inserted down his throat and blown up to
open up the passageway. Otherwise food gets stuck and he chokes. Eating too much
chocolate can be a problem for me due to the caffeine, as I have fibrous cysts
and caffeine in any form causes them to ache and enlarge. The so called benefits
of consuming anything with caffeine or alcohol such as wine is cancelled out by
the physical damage. Case in point, my husband uses Coke to remove rust from
rusty metal such as cast iron. If it can do that, why would anyone want drink
the stuff on a regular basis?
I kind of like to have control of what I drink. I find that when I'm
'on' a caffeine stretch, that green bottle controls ME. I drive out of
my way to get it. I buy extra for Sunday, I get headaches if I don't drink
it on schedule. If I want control...I avoid caffeine.
@SlackTime - Coffee and tea were NOT always part of the WoW. The original
targets were Chamomile and Lobelia medicinal teas, which caused vomiting,
sweating, and diarrhea in an attempt to rebalance the four vital liquids (black
bile, yellow bile, water, and blood.) In spite of the protestations of our
current herbal health mentality, Joseph Smith opposed a lot of the 19th century
medical nonsense we try to endorse today under the guise of the WoW. Coffee and
tea were added as an afterthought by Hyrum Smith quite some time later as an
aside after a talk - and the idea didn't take hold for decades. Coffee and
Tea were pioneer staples, but coffee didn't replace beer as a breakfast
beverage until the turn of the century.
Since we are going to now appeal to what the revealed scriptures say, is beer
okay to drink since "All grain is good for the food of man . . . and barley
for all useful animals, and for mild drinks, as also other grain." (D&C
Since we are going to appeal to what the revealed scriptures say, is beer okay
to drink since "All grain is good for the food of man . . . and barley for
all useful animals, and for mild drinks, as also other grain."
Most LDS do not abide by the Word of Wisdom. Meat is not eaten sparingly.It was presumptuous to assume that caffeine was the reason that coffee
and tea shouldn't be drunk.Given the current research touting
the health benefits of coffee and tea, I suspect now that the word of wisdom
means what it says.HOT drinks are not to be drunk. This would
include hot water and hot chocolate and hot coffee and hot tea.
The Word of Wisdom doesn't cover a lot of things specifically. It is more
an attitude regarding the care of ourselves. This "change" isn't
really a change at all. The WoW has always been specifically about Coffee, Tea
(beverages made from the Tea plant), Tobacco, and Alcohol. But, we have been
counseled to be wise in our use of drugs, for instance. And so, while I may take
a prescribed medication, I try to make sure that I don't become addicted to
that medication. Caffeine is a drug, a stimulant. And as a drug, I would use it
for what it does, knowing it for what it is. It is not something to use daily
lest I develop a reliance/addiction to it. God has made us to be masters over
ourselves, and has granted us our agency. I, for one, will fight to maintain
that agency, by avoiding addictive behaviors and substances. Including caffiene
The WoW SPECIFICALLY endorses the drinking of beer (the mild barley beverages
verse.) Strong drink at the time referred to distilled alcohol (whiskey, vodka,
rum) and mild drinks referred to brewed beverages (beer, ale). There was even a
third category for fermented drinks (wine.) Joseph Smith had a glass of wine the
day of his martyrdom. Copious amounts of wine was drunk at the dedication of the
Nauvoo temple (IN the temple, no less, with drunken dancing every night.)
Brigham Young and many of the apostles regularly drank beer - there is an
interesting talk given by a couple of the apostles on the health benefits of
Danish beer. Our current non-scriptural interpretation of the WoW is from Heber
J Grant, who supported the prohibition movement - quite likely for political
purposes. Our current gymnastics over the WoW (no Coke, what qualifies as an
herbal tea?, is there a rule for green tea?) is based on a complete failure to
understand this principle. BTW, hot drinks originally referred to medicinal tea
- coffee and strong British black tea were an afterthought. It's all tied
up in 19th century ideas about balancing "vital humours" and the affects
of food temperature on health.
I walked this morning and was not weary and I even ran and did not faint. I had
a Coke in both hands and I even though I didn't see a destroying angel, I
made it back home.
What is interesting about all the people who say things like "the WOW
doesn't say anything about not drinking crankcase oil..." is that this
pet "commandment" is created out of thin air. I am willing to bet those
same people that have taken caffeine as their gospel hobby break the speed limit
everyday; roll through stop signs, gun through a yellow light (or red light);
take enough prescription pills to kill a small animal. What kind of television
do you watch? Do you have a garden; a year supply; read and pray everyday, and
on and on and on? There are so many things we should be doing, that we are not,
that we have specific counsel on. Why do we feel the need to add things that
just aren't there. So please, feel free to drink or not drink caffeine.
But, please, realize that it makes not one bit of difference, other than to you.
Many have labeled the Word of Wisdom as a 'health code'. But it is
much more than that. My sister lived the W W to the letter and died of cancer
at age 46. Much more importantly, the Word of Wisdom helps us to remain
separated from the world. Go into a crowd of people who offer you a cup of
coffee and you turn them down -- most will assume you are LDS. By the same
token, refusing a pork sandwich is a tip off you might be Jewish -- a
peculiarity which has kept them united as a group through their long history of
being scattered and mingled with other groups.To testify that simple
obedience to the Word of Wisdom will remove all health problems is near sighted.
We all will face challenges in this life. But obedience to the Word of Wisdom
will bring me closer to the spirit and keep me identified as being LDS; which in
turn will help me not to get lost in worldliness. Some may think us odd, but
being peculiar can have its advantages.
So, no coffee or tea, but eating a dozen Krispy Kreme doughnuts is acceptable,
being morbidly obese is acceptable, taking anti-depressants is
acceptable....what absolute nonsense.
At the time the Word of Wisdom was revealed, there were no sodas, caffeine or
otherwise. What was commonly consumed, and therefore addressed, was coffee,
tea, and alcohol. Yes, there are other substances in those beverages that make
them unhealthy, and there are substances that some claim are beneficial
(although the benefits derived from coffee, tea, or wine are not only derived in
that form, and can be obtained through other foods), caffeine causes: A fast
heart rate,anxiety, depression, difficulty sleeping,nausea, restlessness,
tremors, urinating more often, reduced bone density,fibrosystic breasts,and
more. Stopping caffeine abruptly may cause withdrawal symptoms, such as:nausea,
vomiting, tremors and headaches, all of which are symtoms of withdrawal.We are to avoid any substance that leads to addiction. "It is a
slothful servant that must be commanded in all things". I do not have to
have every line item spelled out for me. The Word of Wisdom is an amazing guide
to healthy living. My family and I have chosen to take advantage of it's
teachings by learning more and following it to the fullest. I believe our
health will be blessed by doing so.
Amazing to me that after what the WofW is clarified as by the Church, people
come out of the woodwork defending why they drink a Coke, Mountain Dew, or
Pepsi. Others come out humming "I'll Go Where You Want Me to Go Dear
Lord" extolling their err on the side of caution. Heaven forbid while some
are humming, they are on their way to another doctor to fill their psychotropic
prescriptions to put them to sleep at night and to wake them up in the morning.
And, oh my, we need to help our poor ecclesiastical leader who in the moment of
passion, had a little minor mishap with a neighbor counterpart. But, by dang,
they only drank spring water! The High Councilors wife wouldn't be caught
dead with a Dew in her mitts.....but she wouldn't be caught dead
associating with one who did. I'm all worked up now this early in the
morning, but I'm signing off to get me one of those new Pepsi NXT Mango
drinks. It's waiting for me in my fridge. You ne'er do wrongs can pop
you an Excedrin when nonone is looking!!
Back in the late 70's a letter came out from the President of the Church
stating that it was okay to dring decaf coffee. That was soon recinded. The
Word of Wisdom was meant as a guide for all members, not a law upon which
adherance to was required for a temple recommend or a position in the church.
My mother a Relief Society President drank coffee all her life and so did her
LDS neighbors. It did not make her any less of a great provider to the needy in
the ward nor did it affect her solid convictions that the Church was true. Tne
spirit and intent of the Word of Wisdom is for our own personal health and
should not be used as law that proves the faithfullness of its members. It
should be revised and stated as a health guide only.
I've started paying closer attention to the signals my body gives me, and
caffeine has become a non-issue. I don't drink anything carbonated because
my body doesn't like suffering the side-effects of artificial ingredients.
Case closed for me.
Bottom line is that people need to think about what they put in their
bodies/temples and consider the effect that is has on the body and spirit, i.e.
their soul. There's genetic predispositions, allergies, etc. that would
make some food or drink OK for one and not for another.For those who
operate like RanchHand, beware of 'pop' science that
'proves' things to be abstained from as being beneficial. A scientist
in our ward told us the health benefit of wine comes from the enzymes in the
drink, not the alcohol. There's just as many studies that show the adverse
effects of coffee and tea, then what do you do? It all boils down to what you
believe, the Word of the Lord, or what?
The Word of Wisdom says absolutely nothing about drinking crankcase oil, but I
would not do it!
I am a 66 year old woman, LDS, no caffiene since my conversion. My sister is
not LDS and is nearly my age, but younger. She has had a myriad of health
problems that I have been blessed to not have. No one can tell me that drinking
caffiene is good for you. And as far as touting coffee, red wine and anything
else that is against the WofW, spare me. I choose to follow the spirit of the
law, use common sense AND avoid the appearance of evil. Your mother was right -
I believe we should never walk so close to the line between good and evil that
it would be easy to fall onto the wrong side - President Kimbal said something
like this. What good could possibly come from drinking soda? The closer we can
adhere to the gospel standards, the better life we will have. No question. If
anything, I wish I would have been more strict with myself and my children.
Disclaimer: I have used cola when sick and think that is acceptable. Thank you
for this article.
I have always been amazed at certain ideas and comments by Latter-Day Saints
that misrepresent what we factually believe and what members make up. First off,
the Word of Wisdom is narrow in its scope of what we cannot drink or take. Drugs
and alcohol are not only addicting but can also destroy and damage us
emotionally, physically, and spiritually. Many people use these substances to
medicate and monitor their emotional swings. Whether to calm their nerves,
manage their depression, or celebrate life, their reliance and use of these
substances are a plague on individuals, families and society. On the other hand,
coffee and tea are not EVIL nor does drinking items that look like them have the
appearance of EVIL! They are items the that have been identified as the Hot
Drinks we are to avoid. I have witnessed an LDS person quickly hiding a Starbuck
cup of hot chocolate for fear of a "General Authority" seeing her.
Ridiculous behavior! Caffeine? Chocolate cake is loaded with it! The part we
avoid living is the second part of the Word of Wisdom. Avoiding soda's does
not make us "Righteous" loving our God and our fellow man does!
Thanks, Carmen. I feel the same way. The WofW doesn't have to say that
Krispy Kreme Donuts are bad for me...I'm not stupid enough to down them
regularly (even though I would like to). It's better for me to just stay
away from them because having them makes me want them (and other sugars)
more.I got in the habit of drinking Mountain Dew in college. I
experience the cravings for it and the headaches if I didn't have it. I
broke myself of that HABIT and have not looked back. My kids all know that we
don't "dew" caffeine and they always ask for the non-caffeinated
drinks when we do have sodas (which is rare). I feel that I have taught them
well and that it will be a great health benefit for them long-term to not have
carbonated and caffeinated drinks in their body. Our family will definitely not
be changing our ways regarding our avoidance of caffeine. It is a choice we
have made for our good health.
I get what your mom was trying to do, but I'm sorry, throwing out Coke to
"avoid the appearance of evil" is nuts. Coke isn't evil. Like you
said, the WOW has always been pretty clear on that. Heck, even coffee, tea or
booze aren't evil by themselves...it's a sin for us Mormons to drink
them because we made specific promises to God not to, but they aren't
specifically evil all by themselves. That isn't pious, its silly. If drinking a coke, something that has nothing to do with the guidance
actually given to us, sets off those "evil alarm bells", then I think
your own moral compass needs to be reevaluated a little.I've
always loved Cherry Coke. If a confused person asks "why are you drinking
that??", it gives me a teaching opportunity about the principles behind the
WoW. Also, it's delicious.
Carmen;Coffee and Tea both have proven health BENEFITS. Red wine
does too. Oh my.Please explain how that squares with the WoW.