TT Thursdays : Wk 6 Weight Loss Challenge, Butterfly Pea Flowers and Mugicha

TT Thursdays : Wk 6 Weight Loss Challenge, Butterfly Pea Flowers and Mugicha


Here we are again TT Thursday.  As you know it’s the day I post about my HealthyWager weight challenge progress.

Butterfly Pea Tea Bag
Butterfly Pea Tea Bag

Yay! Yesterday, I received my Butterfly Pea flowers package from Thailand.  That was fast!  As you know, on Saturday I posted links of things that I wanted to remember and one was Of Mice and Ramen’s tea post.  Also on Saturday, I bought the tea.  I expected it to be awhile before I got it because it was coming from Thailand.  They warned that even though they fly it airmail, sometimes customs was unpredictable as to how long things got stuck there.

I like to drink fluids a lot in the summer time which is one thing that gets me into trouble.  Honestly I don’t eat a lot but I can drink liters of cola and lemonade which as we know is full of sugar and calories.  And don’t tell me I can drink sugar free.  I hate most sugarfree sweeteners as they have a weird taste to them.  I have changed from drinking sweetened coffee and tea to liking them without sugar.  It’s just a matter of learning to like things without sugar rather than using substitutes.

My barley tea with ginger and lime

So Saturday I experimented with making a ginger lime ice tea.

I grated up some ginger, put it in the bottle.

I cut up a lime, squeezed it into the bottle and put some of the lime innards in but not the lime rind.  Rinds need to be soaked awhile to get rid of pesticides and I hadn’t done that

I added in a large tea bag.  Here I made a slight mistake.  I thought I was dropping in regular tea but it turns out it’s Mugicha which is barley tea.  It’s made from roasted barley seeds.  It’s a popular iced summer drink in Japan.  I hadn’t realized mom had mugicha bags.   I was surprised when I tasted my tea the next day.  Mugicha doesn’t taste like regular tea. It has a distinct flavor of its own which I quite like.

Mugicha has some health benefits.  While I lament its lack of caffeine, that same lack means it’s not a diuretic.  Having said that, check the box if you buy Mugicha, as manufacturers can introduce caffeine into the product through their processing methods.   I cold brew it by dropping the bag into the water and letting it sit for more than 24 hours.

You can make mugicha from scratch by dry roasting barley grains–do not use oil or butter or anything.  8 to 12 tablespoons of barley to one gallon of water is a good ratio for tea. If you’re roasting it yourself, by what you need as you go as barley grains don’t have a long shelf.  Some say roast until light brown and others say dark brown.  So it might be a matter of taste as to how dark to go.  I’d experiment and find out how you like it if you go this route. Then you can either drink it as a hot brew or create a cold brew.  Dr. Kessler in his article on barley tea said you can even filter the grains out after your tea is brewed, dry the grains and then eat them as a healthy snack and get a two-for-one.

Butterfly Pea flowers added to hot water makes blue

Here are some health benefits:

  • Eight ounces of barley tea contains about two calories
  • Barley contains antioxidants.
  • One study has proven that barley tea neutralizes peroxynitrite.  Because peroxynitrite is an oxidant and nitrating agent, it can damage cell molecules including DNA and protein.  It is not a free radical but it can create a chemical reaction within your body that creates free radicals, specifically carbonate radical and nitrogen dioxide.  So you can see why it’s a good thing that barley tea neutralizes peroxynitrate.
  • Pouring Butterfly Pea Flower hot water into barley tea

    A study showed that barley tea protects tooth surfaces against the colonization of Streptococcus mutans, a bacterial agent which causes tooth decay.

  • Japanese say it is good for your blood circulation.  Some evidence suggests it has anticoagulant properties, thinning your blood a  little which is why it helps your circulation.
  • Koreans, who call barley tea “boricha”, say that it is good for digestion and food absorption. They also say it reduces cholesterol and constipation.
Butterfly Pea Flower plus Lime equal Purple

Be aware that some people assign the benefits of barley grain to barley tea and not all benefits make the transition when the barley is consumed as liquid rather than grain. Anecdotal evidence is that it’s good for losing weight.  Well, yeah if you replace soda or any sugared drink with this two-calorie drink, that’s a good thing.

Wow! I didn’t know Barley Tea was that good for you!  I am happy with my iced ginger lime barley tea

When I got  my flowers I wanted to add them because i heard the flowers plus lime = purple.  First I added the flowers to hot water and got a beautiful blue.  Then I added my blue water into the ginger lime barley tea and I got a pretty pretty purple tea.

And there you have it: Iced Butterfly Pea Ginger Lime Barley Tea

Weight Loss Challenge week’s progress report

HealthyWage Weight Loss Challenge Progress report:  237.3 pounds.  Lost 2.4 pounds since last week.  Total loss so far is 14.8 pounds.  (Started at 252.1) I wanted it to be total 15 pounds today but didn’t quite get there. I have to go somewhere so I’ll put up the little progress graphics when I get back.  And maybe my inches too.

(9 hours later.  Sorry meant to come back sooner.  Took the bus and had to pick up cat litter and a gallon of water.  Walked 1/2 mile from the bus stop.  When I got home, stepped on the scale to see how much everything I was carrying weighed then stripped down and weighed again.  I was carrying 39 pounds!!!! I can’t believe it.  Also really tired so took a nap straight away.  I am all impressed with myself carrying 39 pounds for half a mile.  I could not have done that a month ago.)

The HealthyWage Slimming Challenge is a 6% shared jackpot challenge.  As you can see my goal is 237 pounds for the 6% and I am almost there.  Only 0.3 pounds to go and there are 39 days left to the challenge.  I can’t weigh in untl the final days of the challenge.  If more than 75% of the people who joined 460 who joined lose their 6%, everyone gets their money back.  If less than 75% win, we get more than our money back.  Still I hope everyone succeeds.  If less than 75% wins, the company gets 25% and everyone else gets a share of what is left.  split between everyone who suceeeded.  So far 63 have succeeded and I am on the verge.  Heather has done the best and lost 12.85%, saying she is on a whole food, plant-based diet.  We don’t see the weight unless people opt to show it which she didn’t.  I am #68.   Places don’t mean anything since everyone wins if they reach their goal but I’m happy I’m in the top 15%

I am still behind the curve ball on the HealthyWager Challenge as I’m in the yellow.  As you can see, if it’s a straight diagonal line loss, I should be at 235.9 and I’m at 237.3. I’m still making up the time I lost on the plateau. HealthyWager is a little different because people set their own time limits and you can join it at any time.  Still we have a chat forum and people talk about how they are doing.  They also put up standings which is ranked by how far along you are towards your goal in your age group.  So in the 50s women age group, I am at #1014, lol.  It doesn’t seem so bad when I started in the 1400s.  Nathalie is in #1 and her weighout will be July 29th.  They give you a two-week window to weighout in so she’s in her final weigh-out period.  Once her final weighout video passes review, HealthyWage will send her a check. She has lost more than double what her goal was (again we don’t see weights, just percentages lost.  I admit I’m curious but I don’t share my weight either with them — just you guys) so she has won her $1350 and totally deserves it.

Yesterday my fitbit said 8,780 steps.  My highest so far.  As I mentioned before it’s not accurate in that arm movements when typing get registered as steps, just not as many steps as walking.  I think it has something to do with it being  a swimming fitbit so supposed to measure swimming.  I haven’t gotten a decent baseline on how much to minus each day because if I’m home all day, I’ll take off the fitbit to wash dishes and forget to put it back on so my full day at home is very inconsistent running from 666 on Friday 13th (I’m not lying! And wasn’t that just spooky!) to 2,289.  I do walk around at home and water plants outside and stuff but the lower numbers are definitely from my not remembering to put it back on after dishes.  Still, the 8,780 was a good achievement.  I got some of it walking from the bus stops to my destination and quite a bit from wandering a floor of the Museum of Art’s Biennial Arizona Artists show.

As to my inches, on June 28th, I wrote ” I couldn’t find my sewing measuring tape so I’m using the flexible metal tape.  It might not be as accurate but it will still give me a baseline.  B=48″. UB=42. W=47.5″.  G=51″.  H=50″. Th=28.25″.  Not happy with those numbers but there they are.  G is gut — I measured where  stomach went out the furthest.”

June 28th was my 3rd week in and I had already lost weight.  Unfortunately, I didn’t measure myself at the beginning and I should have.  So for today’s measurements, out of my own curiosity because my clothes are getting baggier:  B= 47″ (lost an inch there, boohoo!),  UB=41 (one inch.  I used to wear two extenders for my bra and last week I took one off and it felt comfortable), W=47″ (lost half an inch there.  I’ll take what I can get), G=50″ (one inch off.  Yay!), H=49.5″  (half an inch off here), Th=27.25″ (one inch off here too!).  Well, I didn’t lose as much inches as I thought but I guess just a little makes your clothes feel a lot baggier.

This week is a little rougher.  Sumiko insisted on giving me a 20oz bag of dark chocolate.  That’s more than a pound.  She insists I don’t need to lose weight and I look fine.  It’s in my freezer.  Oh, god.  Oh, goddess.  Oh, dear. (hey, just being equal opportunity).  Bangs my head against the wall.  There is a pound of chocolate in my freezer.  Yeah, Barkthins are thin pieces but still!  I am not a saint but the bag is still there, taunting me.  Gulps my barley tea.  People don’t understand about cutting back and dieting.  You want me to give the bag away?  What? Are you crazy?  That’s dark chocolate in there.  I hope it keeps for 4 months.  Sighs.

Well, that’s all folks for this week.  If you’re working on losing weight or getting fit or just changing to live healthier, I’d love to hear about it in the comments.



9 Surprising Health Benefits of Barley Tea
by Dr. Michael Kessler, DC, Doctors Health Press, October 19, 2015


 Effect of Barley Coffee on the Adhesive Properties of Oral Streptococci
by Adele Papetti, Carla Pruzzo, Maria Daglia, Pietro Grisoli, Alessandro Bacciaglia, Barbara Repetto, Cesare Dacarro, and Gabriella Gazzani, Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, 2007; 55 (2), pp 278–284; doi: 10.1021/jf062090i.

Anti-oxidative compounds in barley tea
by Hideo Etoh, Kazushi Murakami, Tokiyasu Yogoh, Hajime Ishikawa, Yoshiyasu Fukuyama, and Hitoshi Tanaka, Bioscience, Biotechnology, and Biochemistry, 2004; 68(12):2616-8.

Barley Tea Benefits and Side Effects : Learn to Make Korean Barley Tea at Home
By Malia Frey, Very Well Fit, April 23, 2018

Butterfly Pea Tea
Of Mice and Ramen, April 27, 2018

9 Great Things About Barley Tea (Mugicha)
By Rina, Basic Tokyo

6 Health Benefits of Barley Tea: Cleanser, Cooler And Caffeine Free
NDTV Food,: July 16, 2018

From Amazon: I ordered these 2 plus seeds on Saturday.  The Thai Top Trade on the right is the one that arrived yesterday.

Organic Dried Butterfly Pea Thai Herbals Blue Tea 100 Gram. It’ll take a month to ship but shipping is free. People said it was really good in Amazon reviews. People included photos of the drinks and food they made including purple sourdough bread in the reviews

100% Organic Dried Butterfly Pea Flowers from Thailand by ThaiTopTrade. Cheap and fulfilled by Amazon with free shipping. Reviews says it comes airmail from Thailand so not sure how long.People in the reviews talked of it having little or mild flavor so they use it to color various things and to add pretty color and antioxidants to food and drinks

Amazon disclosure: “We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to and affiliated sites.”

HealthyWage Disclosure:  I am signed up as a HealthyWage affiliate.  If you join through the links above, I’ll get a commission.  However, they also have a friends link, if you join up by clicking this friends link, it adds a $40 to your HealthyWager award if you complete your goal and $40 to my HealthyWager award if I complete my goal.  We don’t get the $40 if we fail.  I think the $40 is for HealthyWager challenges only and not the other ones like the 6% individual challenge or the team challenge. The HealthyWage affiliate link doesn’t matter if anyone succeeds but there is no benefit for the friend, just for the affiliate no matter what kind of challenge they join. I think joining through the friends link also lets you view your friend on the dashboard: you’ll see their name and what % they’ve lost so far but not the actual weight.  That’s private unless you make it public.


12 Replies to “TT Thursdays : Wk 6 Weight Loss Challenge, Butterfly Pea Flowers and Mugicha”

  1. I would love to try the barley tea with ginger and lime. Thanks for reminding me about the butterfly pea tea! I haven’t drunk it in a while! It used to be so cheap; I could just pluck the flowers from anyone’s backyard but now it’s getting expensive and quite hard to find too. I have to buy it online!

    1. could you grow it yourself? Is it easy? Its too bad it’s hard to find there now. Over here, I don’t think I’ve ever seen them until I saw your post

        1. I know that feeling. I don’t have a green thumb either.

          I got the flowers pretty cheaply through Amazon. They flew it all the way from Thailand. So I got lucky because I don’t think there is any local shops that carry it. I also ordered 10 seeds but a lot of people complained that they couldn’t get them to grow so I don’t have much hope. I will try next spring anyways.

    1. Thank you! Your support means a lot. I don’t think I would be doing as well without the encouragement. Huggies

      Hope you’re having a great weekend and can get out on the water.

    1. I know! I was very surprised myself. It helped that I didn’t know until I got home and put everything on the scale, lol.

    1. It is an unusual tasting drink. I am finding now that it’s been in the fridge for the third day that the ginger is a lot stronger/spicier. I quite like it. I think sugar is a strong taste so to give it up, you have to swap it out for other strong but good tastes like lime or ginger. I like water but sometimes I like drinking something that tastes like something.


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