The consumption of coffee, tea, and alcohol is strictly forbidden in Mormonism. Anything that could endanger health is not allowed. However, the Church is concerned because young believers in particular do not follow the coffee rule consistently. More and more young Mormons would go to Starbucks and have an iced coffee there, says the religious scholar Patrick Mason.
However, Starbucks recently announced that it would open its first store in the Mormon city of Provo, Utah. Given these, Mormon outsiders are fond of the question: Why don’t Mormons drink tea, coffee, and alcohol. Meanwhile, believers, especially new members in the denomination, are also curious to know what they’re allowed to eat and drink. So, in this article, we’ll tell you the reasons the Church gives for its caffeine and alcohol forbiddance. We will also see other diet and lifestyle restrictions and why they’re blacklisted.
Diet Prohibitions and Religion
Most religions have some prohibitions on the consumption of food or beverages. For example, the Jews have to keep meat and dairy products separate from each other and Islam forbids the consumption of pork.
With the Mormons, however, the rules are a little more specific. They are a Christian denomination and also call themselves the “Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints”.
For example, Mormons are not allowed to drink coffee! The church doesn’t just prohibit coffee, it asks members not to buy anything in a coffee shop. The consumption of tea and alcohol is also prohibited.
Who Are the Mormons?
The Mormons are a Christian denomination that, in addition to the Bible, also see the Book of Mormon as the script of their religion. It originated in the USA in 1830 and now has around 15 million followers worldwide.
Why is Every Mormon Commanded to Take No Caffeine?
Mormons believe that God revealed in 1833 that foods and substances containing liquor, tobacco, coffee, and tea were prohibited, according to the Washington Post.
Also, those who stick to it are promised not only health but also protection, knowledge, and wisdom. According to a study, Mormons who adhere to these principles live an average of 17 years longer. A UCLA study even reports that Mormons live longer. Other reports also found that Mormons live the healthiest.
Church Members Are Not Obeying the Rules
At the moment, however, the coffee rule, in particular, is causing unrest in Mormonism. The church is concerned because young believers in particular are not consistently adhering to the rules. According to a 2016 research conducted by Jana Riess, a writer, and member of the Church, she found that four out of ten active members under the age of 51 had had coffee in the previous six months.
This is partly because more coffee houses are being opened in the United States. That’s why more and more young Mormons would go to Starbucks and have an iced coffee there. In previous generations, however, entering a coffee shop was already taboo.
Therefore, clarifications on the strict health code of religion were published in the August issue of a youth magazine of the church.
The church warns that coffee is forbidden, no matter how fancy the name is! There is no gray area that the church would allow coffee beverages in any way.
What Can Mormons Eat?
The church okays alcohol and caffeine-free soft drinks. It asks believers to eat grain, most especially wheat, which is called the “staff of life.” However, they advise eating meat sparingly.
But if tea is also forbidden, can Mormons drink herbal tea? Well, according to Rachel Bruner, a writer, energy healer, and member of the LDS, herbal tea is allowed but not traditional tea.
Drinks with names like café, latte, mocha, espresso, or anything that ends with -ccino usually have coffee in them. These thus violate the rules, according to the church, and are off the Mormon diet.
Other Strange Mormon Rules
The strict rules in Mormonism aren’t limited to caffeine restriction. Here are some rules you may have not come across before.
Once a Month You must not Eat or Drink Anything for 24 hours
For Mormons, fasting is a part of a believing life. Two consecutive meals are waived on one Sunday each month. The amount of money saved by skipping meals is donated by the families as a so-called fasting sacrifice.
You are not Allowed to Eat Meat in Summer
In the Word of Wisdom, the Mormon Health Law, it is stated that meat may only be eaten in winter or in times of need. Very few Mormons keep this commandment.
Missionaries must Shower Every Day and are not Allowed to Have Tattoos or Piercings
As “Ambassadors of The Lord” there are a lot of rules to be observed. Showering daily, using deodorant, and washing your hair often are a must. The scent of the perfume must not be too noticeable.
The women’s skirts must come below the knees (even when sitting), T-shirts without sleeves are not allowed (otherwise you could see the armpits) and bras must be white or cream-colored and comfortable and decent. Conspicuous accessories or visible hair ornaments are also prohibited. Earrings should hang down a maximum of 2 to 3 centimeters from the earlobe.
Missionaries are not Allowed to Use Television or Facebook
What would probably put off most young people seems to spur Mormons on missionary trips. Because any distraction is considered harmful, the use of social media is also prohibited.
The Rules must not be Criticized
As a Mormon, if you have a problem with all the rules, you shouldn’t say it out loud. Because the church has a committee that is dedicated to disciplining church members.
This spends all of its time collecting data on each member to make sure no one is out of line. Some people already lost their jobs for making negative comments about the church.
In the rulebook of the Mormons, alcohol, cigarettes, tea and coffee are strictly prohibited. Anything that could endanger health is not allowed. Everyone who stays away from addictive substances is promised not only health but also protection, knowledge, and wisdom. According to studies, Mormons who adhere to these principles live an average of 17 years longer.