Talk:Herbal tea

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
WikiProject Food and drink (Rated Start-class, High-importance)
WikiProject icon This article is within the scope of WikiProject Food and drink, a collaborative effort to improve the coverage of food and drink related articles on Wikipedia. If you would like to participate, please visit the project page, where you can join the discussion and see a list of open tasks.
Start-Class article Start  This article has been rated as Start-Class on the project's quality scale.
Checklist icon
 High  This article has been rated as High-importance on the project's importance scale.

Coffee is a tisane?[edit]

First line reads "An herbal tea, tisane, or ptisan is a herbal or plant infusion and usually not made from the leaves of the tea bush (Camellia sinensis)." By that definition, coffee is a tisane, and the most popular tisane in the world. If that's the case, it should be mentioned prominently in the article. Dave (talk) 19:45, 21 June 2012 (UTC)

Technically that seems true, though it doesn't often seem referred to by this term. Drip coffee at least is literally a form of roasted fruit herbal tea. Whitebox (talk) 21:01, 25 February 2013 (UTC)

Early discussion[edit]

Re: recent edit -- What about non-black tea? Green/oolong/white tea is "real" tea in every sense, as are blends such as "Earl Green" (bergamot and green tea). // Utilitaritron

Earl Gray is bergamot and *black* tea, no?

I just clarified that. // Utilitaritron —Preceding undated comment added 23:36, 17 April 2005.

im korean, and i think the term for barley tea is bolicha, not holicha —Preceding unsigned comment added by Blueaster (talkcontribs) 08:30, 14 October 2005


I believe the bissap and hibiscus are the same species. Badagnani 05:02, 19 January 2006 (UTC)

Roselle (dah/bissap) is a species of hibiscus. I've moved it to be listed under its English name Roselle, but put in the two common synonyms I know. I left the separate hibiscus listing, but added a note to see also Roselle, as I can't say for certain if it's the exact same plant or consumed in the same ways in the Middle East and/or Okinawa. Perhaps someone else can clear that up. -- Bluedude (talk) 10:35, 5 March 2009 (UTC)

What is the origin of tea?[edit]

What is the origin of drinking tea? It a related origin to soup? When, and where did people start drinking warm water? And flavouring it? When did this become routine? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 22:09, 17 September 2008 (UTC)

Some of this might be discussed on the other tea pages. Tea could have been the first "soup". A person would also likely need to have created a container and a means of heating it, and have found a plant that didn't kill them, with a pleasing flavor and those all might happen in any order by chance. I think some of the Chinese tea myths state that a person was boiling water and some leaves were blown in by the wind and the resulting infusion was found to taste good. However, you might be asking about something so ancient in human history that no 100% verifiable source can be found. Whitebox (talk) 21:20, 25 February 2013 (UTC)

While I wasn't looking for anything quite this expansive, I can attest that I came to this page looking for information on the use of herbal teas historically, and there are really only a couple un-cited references to it. Pages for individual tisanes often give cited historical information about their use, so it seems like the information is out there, it's just a matter of presentation. (talk) 17:45, 13 July 2014 (UTC)

Rename Page[edit]

This article already emphasises the fact that anything containing tea leaves is not a tisane, that tisanes are not true teas. But no one wants to see scare-quotes in a heading i.e. Herbal "Tea", so let's make Tisane the primary name, leaving Herbal Tea as a redirect.

If there's no objections I'll just go ahead. Nick 17:00, 5 August 2006 (UTC)

Is tisane a commonly used term? I've never heard it before now, I've only heard the terms "herbal tea" and less commonly, "infusion".--RLent 17:44, 29 January 2007 (UTC)
It's quite commonly used in the tea communities to denote any plant material or aquaous plant infusions that are not created from the leaves and flushes of Camellia sinensis. Sjschen 02:22, 27 March 2007 (UTC)
I also find it improper to use "Herbal Tea" instead of "Tisane". You can't fight bad habits, but the correct word is still "Tisane". I propose the people in charge of this article change it to Tisane and keep the section in the beginning saying that "Herbal Tea" is popular, but a misnomer. "Herbal Infusion" could also be used throughout the article if "Tisane" is not popular enough in other countries. Bragador (talk) 01:38, 28 August 2009 (UTC)
I see nothing wrong with the current name of this article. A quick check of several online dictionaries reveals the following acceptable definitions for tea. For example, "Any infusion or decoction, especially when made of the dried leaves of plants; as, sage tea; chamomile tea; catnip tea."[1] And another: "Any of various plants somewhat resembling tea in properties; also : an infusion of their leaves used medicinally or as a beverage."[2] And yet another: "Any of various beverages, made as by steeping the leaves of certain plants or by extracting an infusion especially from beef. Any of various plants having leaves used to make a tealike beverage.[3] Thus, the term "herbal tea" seems to be proper usage according these authorities. Supporting this premise, I can think of many plants that have the term 'tea' in their common names: New Jersey tea (several species in Ceanothus), Mormon tea (several species in Ephedra), tea of heaven (Hydrangea serrata)—just to name a few examples. Pinethicket (talk) 10:23, 9 October 2009 (UTC)

A rename might be a good idea, as strictly speaking, if drinks do not come from camelia sinensis they are not teas - they are tisanes. ACEOREVIVED (talk) 09:36, 1 March 2012 (UTC)

The french page is well named "Tisane" despite a lot of frenchspeakers name it "thé". I mean it's not because the majority of people call it with a wrong name that it's correct to say it! (talk) 15:35, 17 May 2016 (UTC)

Why would tisane be the correct word? Most herbal teas do not contain barley, and if the pedantic argument is the word tisane has changed its meaning, then why doesn't the same hold for the word tea? — Preceding unsigned comment added by 2601:802:8003:2040:65ED:F008:6FC3:BE16 (talk) 23:55, 1 November 2016 (UTC)


Can someone possibly add the etymology of the word "tisane"? Because I've never heard of it before, not even in tea catalogs, advertisements, etc. Calicore 16:16, 10 August 2006 (UTC)

From OED:

F. tisane (14th c. tizanne, 16th c. ptisane) = Pr. tisana, tipsana, Sp. and It. tisana, ad. L. ptisana (also in med.L. tipsana), a. Gr. πτισάνη peeled or pearl barley, also a drink made from this, f. πτισσειν to peel, to winnow, to crush or bray as in a mortar.
1398 TREVISA Barth. De P.R. XVII. cxv. (Bodl. MS.), Of barlich ischeled and isode in water is a medicinable drinke ymade at phisicians clepen Thisan. c1400 Lanfranc's Cirurg. 139 In e v. day he took ikke tizanne [v.r. tysan]. c1440 Promp. Parv. 494/2 Tysane, drynke, ptisana. 1567 TURBERV. Epitaphs, etc. 97b, They will refuse the Tysants taste. 1596 DANETT tr. Comines (1614) 15 A little of the tysan the Earle had drunke of. 1709 MRS. MANLEY Secret Mem. I. 126 He could not confine himself to Wine and Water, or Tissanes. 1854 BADHAM Halieut. 119 Paul of Ægina advises that the patient quaff a light tisane.

It's not clear when it ceased to mean specifically the barley drink and became an infusion of any herb but the word has definitely been around for a long time.

I'm not surprised that you haven't seen it in catalogues. Most commercial sources just add the word "tea" to the end of whatever it is, whether it contains real tea leaves or not. Nick 17:30, 10 August 2006 (UTC)

most people aren't familiar with the term "Tisane".... Is it so much more important to be correct than to be practical and accesible Blueaster 04:12, 8 October 2006 (UTC)?

Why not be both correct and accessible? That's the beauty of redirects, they send people using colloquialisms to the correct pages. Things are perfect the way they are, the page is at its most accurate name, redirects are sending people there and 'herbal "tea"' is in bold in the top line, so people know that they're in the right place. (I think all the redirects are working fine.) I don't see what you could possibly want to change. Nick 22:09, 9 October 2006 (UTC)
The problem is that the most commonly used name is supposed to be used as the article name, which is why we have Dido (singer) instead of the old article name Dido Armstrong. Since most people have never heard the word tisane, but almost everyone is familiar with herbal teas, the common name is not being used. Thanks.   — Lee J Haywood 19:41, 10 October 2006 (UTC)
This is explained clearly by Wikipedia:Naming_conventions.   — Lee J Haywood 20:18, 10 October 2006 (UTC)
What do you mean "most people"? Where is your citation for that statistic? (talk) 03:21, 22 June 2012 (UTC)

New infusion category[edit]

What is people's opinion if we create an infusion category and maybe an extract category. I hate calling tisane tea :) --Kupirijo 14:19, 28 December 2006 (UTC)

I'm all for it, but you have to changing the "herbal tea" category name into just "tisane" and making this page its main article. Sjschen 02:19, 27 March 2007 (UTC)


See Wikipedia:Naming conventions (common names). I'm sure that the vast majority of English speakers have never heard of a tisane (my spell-checker doesn't even recognize it), but everyone knows what an herbal tea is. That is simply the most common, most generally understood name for it. Most authoritative dictionaries define tea as an infusion of other herbs in addition to the usual meaning C. sinensis infusion, such as the American Heritage here. This dictionary isn't for "specialists," it is for general knowledge, and articles should be written and titled in a general way. Therefore this is a proposal for a page move to Herbal tea (or Herbal infusion if the first is too controversial). --♦♦♦Vlmastra♦♦♦ 03:17, 25 September 2007 (UTC)

Oppose - Herbal "tea" is clearly not tea; while your dictionary might catalogue all slang uses of the word, this encyclopedia should only use correct titles.
I would oppose the move to Herbal infusion less strongly. Still, the word "infusion" is a little vague and that title doesn't make clear that it refers to a beverage, and this article is only about those infusions that are meant to be drunk.
The current situation - Herbal tea as a redirect and the slang term appearing in the first line - is the best arrangement. All the same information is conveyed, people still find the page but it has a more formal title. If you want to have Herbal infusion redirect here, then that would be fine too. Nick 17:46, 25 September 2007 (UTC)
But I'm sure you saw the example of jazz in the policy page I linked? Well, there they simply used jazz rather than jazz music because it's (a) simpler and (b) "jazz" as a term has little ambiguity; there is no confusion. Here, "herbal tea" has only one common meaning, and there is therefore no ambiguity. What about, say, sea cucumbers? They're only extremely remotely related to cucumbers, and that term might seem to be misleading, but there really isn't any ambiguity because the phrase "sea cucumber" has only one meaning. We might say similar things about spanish moss ("not a moss"), etc... Really, I'm all for specific naming, but not obscure naming. --♦♦♦Vlmastra♦♦♦ 20:07, 25 September 2007 (UTC)
Agree – the common name is the correct one, as per the naming conventions. I'd go with herbal tea, but herbal infusion is acceptable.  — Lee J Haywood 20:51, 27 September 2007 (UTC)
Agree – "tisane" is just too obscure a word. Although "infusion" is the most correct English word (and also far more recognizable than "tisane"), it is a bit too ambiguous and "herbal infusion" would be too much of an artificial construct. "Herbal tea" is the most common phrase used for herbal teas, and Random House Dictionary even defines "tisane" by calling it a tea. ( Blueaster 04:54, 1 October 2007 (UTC)
Agree Tisane is highly obscure, and very few people have heard of it, much less use it. We use sea horse, although it is not a horse, we use sea cucumber although it is not a cucumber, Spanish moss although it is not a moss, sea hare although it is not a hare. While herbal tea is technically not a tea, it is closer to tea than a sea horse is to a horse. The title of the page ought to be "herbal tea".--RLent 18:41, 5 October 2007 (UTC)
Oppose Wikipedia has to be used to educate the people correctly and should itself be used to alter common misnamings. I prefer tisane. KVDP (talk) 09:26, 21 January 2008 (UTC)

As I sense a general consensus, I am moving Tisane to Herbal tea. Blueaster 19:21, 14 October 2007 (UTC)

wow, almost all of the links to this page refered to "hebal tea" and not "tisane".... —Preceding unsigned comment added by Blueaster (talkcontribs) 19:26, 14 October 2007 (UTC)

Okay there little history menetioned. For example which area around the used herbal tea, years ago. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 00:24, 7 November 2007 (UTC)

First line rewrite[edit]

An herbal tea, tisane, or ptisan is an herbal infusion made from anything other than the leaves of the tea bush (Camellia sinensis).

change to-->

An herbal tea, tisane, or ptisan is a infusion made from anything other than the leaves of the tea bush (Camellia sinensis).

The reason why this "herbal" would be deleted is because then the same line can be used with the coffee, tea, ginger ale, ... article and would show their similarities better.

KVDP (talk) 13:39, 16 January 2008 (UTC)

Stevia health concerns ?[edit]

In the article on stevia, at least 3 articles cited debunk the lack of carcinogen properties of the plant. Furthermore one study shows how the original paper on the carcinogen properties where due to flawed experimenting. In that context I believe it's unwarranted to keep the phrase "Be advised: Stevia may be carcinogenic." in an article about herbal tea. (talk) 13:16, 14 June 2008 (UTC)

Actual benefits of tisane?[edit]

A number of lines in this article refer to the 'therapeutic benefits' or effects of tisanes. I propose that this is altered as there is no therapeutic application for tisanes. While there may be perceived benefits I am not aware of any consensus regarding the actual effects, or mode of action, of tisane consumption to produce effects such as "stimulant, relaxant or sedative properties". While there may be specific examples which have been associated with these properties, I think it is misleading to state that tisane consumption has a therapeutic benefit, given that this specifically implies a defined mode of action with clinical outcomes. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 09:31, 12 February 2013 (UTC)

Is the problem that the article talks about tisanes collectively? There's no "consensus regarding the actual effects, or mode of action, of tisane consumption" because tisanes are produced from a large number of plants with different effects and modes of actions. The stimulant properties and mode of action for mate de coca have been extensively studied and are very well understood. Purported benefits of some of the other plants certainly are less well studied, but the article is making these broad claims because it deals with a broad class of plants. The language in the article uses caveats and disclaimers and seems pretty good to me (although there is potential for improvement). I think it's pretty clear to readers that "stimulant, relaxant or sedative properties" refers to properties of different plants used in tisanes (it's pretty unlikely for one tisane to be both stimulant and sedative). Removing all mention of claimed therapeutic applications seems like an over-reach of WP:RSMED.Plantdrew (talk) 16:39, 12 February 2013 (UTC)

Composition section concern[edit]

The sentence: "Seeds and roots can also be boiled on a stove that does not use LPG." ... what's that about? --Tagishsimon (talk) 23:47, 2 January 2009 (UTC)


I'm an herbalist, and while I've heard many herbalists warn against chamomile's use in people who are allergic to ragweed, I have yet to see a single peer-reviewed source confirming that anaphalaxis has ever occurred as a result of someone with hay fever ingesting chamomile tea. I'm deathly allergic to ragweed-- I've actually had anaphalactic shock just from pollen exposure-- yet I've never had an allergic reaction to chamomile whatsoever.

Chamomile is GRAS (generally recognized as safe) by the FDA, even for infants. Considering that there is no source to back the alarmist warning against chamomile tea, I think it would be appropriate to remove it. If someone finds a peer-reviewed case report of this problem, they're welcome to re-add the warning. RabbitGrrrl (talk) 20:07, 27 February 2009 (UTC)

A herbal tea navbox template[edit]

I've made a suggestion/comment at Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Soft Drinks/Coffee and Tea task force#Herbal tea template about a potential navbox/grouping. Just fyi, might spark some thoughts. -- Quiddity (talk) 00:00, 9 December 2009 (UTC)


"Rooibos" is not the same as "red tea". The literal translation of "rooibos" is "red bush". —Preceding unsigned comment added by Virasana1234 (talkcontribs) 19:13, 9 July 2010 (UTC)

Requested Move[edit]

The following discussion is an archived discussion of a requested move. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on the talk page. Editors desiring to contest the closing decision should consider a move review. No further edits should be made to this section.

The result of the move request was: Page moved back. Discussion on this page is needed before any further renaming takes place. Yunshui  11:10, 31 October 2012 (UTC)

TisaneHerbal tea – This week user:JohnnyMrNinja moved this page from Herbal tea to Tisane without discussion or consensus. This page has been stable at Herbal tea since it recieved a majority of opinions in a 2007 discussion about the article name. Johnny is correct that a majority is not consensus, however it is even more true that he doesn't have consensus for this move. This unilateral move violates the guidelines for moving a page at WP:MOVE, and especially at WP:RM/TR. It would be great to have another discussion about the article name, but before we do that it needs to be restored to it's stable name. Is there an administrator that could do that asap please? Thanks! --Tom Hulse (talk) 20:54, 30 October 2012 (UTC)

  • Speedy close and restore per RM result - Tom, what's preventing you restoring it yourself? In ictu oculi (talk) 00:09, 31 October 2012 (UTC)
Johnny's extra edit to the redirect page insulates it from being name-changed by a non-administrator (I did try). --Tom Hulse (talk) 01:27, 31 October 2012 (UTC)
The above discussion is preserved as an archive of a requested move. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on this talk page or in a move review. No further edits should be made to this section.
  • A related question. I noticed that in addition to the name change the first sentence was changed from An herbal tea, tisane, or ptisan is a herbal or plant infusion and usually not made from the leaves of the tea bush (Camellia sinensis). to Tisane (UK /tɪˈzæn/, US /tɪˈzɑːn/), or "herbal tea", is a catch-all term for any non-caffeinated beverage made from the infusion or decoction of herbs, spices, or other plant material. Should that be changed back as well or should it stay? — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 00:03, 1 November 2012 (UTC)
The "non caffeinated" definition is certainly not reflected to by either of the dictionary sources cited in the lede. While most tisanes are non-caffeinated, I believe most people would consider mate and kuding to be tisanes/herbal teas (also kuding is derived from two species, and I'm pretty sure that one of them (Ligustrum robustum) does not contain caffeine).Plantdrew (talk) 16:52, 12 February 2013 (UTC)


The comment about cannabis is ad hoc and has little to do with Herbal Teas. It should be reasonably connected with an infusion, or more likely, eliminated as extranious. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 02:17, 29 June 2015 (UTC)

Health claims edit[edit]

I reverted this edit as the claims I looked at (valerian, chamomile), are cited on those article pages. The claims need [citation needed] tags so that they can be referenced here as well, and those that don't have can then be removed. Greenman (talk) 08:18, 10 September 2015 (UTC)

k. this article has been [citation needed] for ages. seemed like the time to start removing stuff war more now than later. i think this list is problematic for a few reasons. a small fraction have common uses, theres no standard format, and it doesnt really meet the list standards. the tone is a little weird too: 'pennyroyal: abortifacient, valerian: sedative' sounds like medical advice above and beyond the cited sources.

how do you feel about, instead of a section-wide-cn, changing them to '<HERB>: commonly used as <USE> [citation needed]' until someone adds the refs for them?Elliot.wolk (talk) 17:24, 10 September 2015 (UTC)

Agree, in the meantime another user has removed a whole bunch of the statements, so I'll revert back to a clean version and we can start from there (and I'll restore your thyme cite after the revert). Greenman (talk) 18:37, 10 September 2015 (UTC)