Can chai tea cause heartburn?

Heartburn is a common symptom of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), a condition that causes the stomach to move back and forth up into the esophagus.

Heartburn is often caused by acid reflux, which means the stomach acid back flows into the esophagus. This can cause a burning sensation in the chest or throat.

Many factors can cause heartburn, including:

  • Eating large meals
  • Taking certain medications
  • Drinking alcohol
  • Smoking

Chai tea has a warming effect on the body, which may be why it can help relieve heartburn. However, a review published in the journal Current Review of Gastroenterology and Hepatology in 2018 notes that chai tea is usually associated with a bitter taste and not the typical burning sensation associated with heartburn.

If you experience heartburn, try drinking chai tea with honey in it instead. Honey has soothing properties that may soothe the burning sensation.

Are there any potential side effects of chai tea?

Chai tea contains caffeine, which can cause a number of side effects.

The National Health Service (NHS) in the United Kingdom recommends that people who drink more than 400 milligrams of caffeine daily should avoid consuming chai tea.

Chai tea has a warming effect on the body, which may be why it can cause some side effects. The 2015 review in Current Review of Gastroenterology and Hepatology noted that chai tea contains a high amount of caffeine, which may cause tingling or a burning sensation in the mouth.

You may also experience:

  • Diarrhea
  • Headache
  • Increased heart rate

If you experience any of these side effects, you should stop using chai tea immediately.

How do you make chai tea?

Chai tea can be made by a number of methods.

You can make chai tea at home using the following steps:

  1. Boil water in a saucepan.
  2. When the water reaches a boil, remove the pan from the heat.
  3. Add chai tea bags to the water.
  4. Let the tea bags steep for 15 to 30 minutes.
  5. Remove the tea bags and let them cool.
  6. Serve the tea hot.

You can also buy presteeped tea bags, which you can then steep yourself.

You can also purchase chai tea bags in health food stores, but make sure that they’re organic and that they’re not from China.

There is also a type of chai tea that you can purchase that contains caffeine and other ingredients.

According to The National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (NCCIH), the caffeine content of chai tea can vary. For example, some brands will say that the tea contains 0.25 milligrams of caffeine per cup, while others will say that it contains 2 milligrams of caffeine per cup.

This can depend on the types of tea bags and how long you steep them, as well as the type of water that you use.

The study that the NCCIH relied on reported that the caffeine content of chai tea can vary between 0.25 milligrams and 2 milligrams of caffeine per cup. In this study, the researchers analyzed three brands of chai tea.

As a rule of thumb, you can add more water to your chai tea or purchase higher-caffeine chai tea bags.

Is it safe to drink chai tea on a regular basis?

It’s best to try drinking chai tea once or twice a week.

If you do drink chai tea on a regular basis, you can reduce your risk of developing side effects by:

  • Drinking water instead of hot tea
  • Steeping tea for only 5 minutes
  • Drinking chai tea with honey in it

How to make chai tea for children?

The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends that parents limit the amount of caffeine that children and teens drink. According to the AAP, children and teens should limit caffeine to less than 400 milligrams per day.

If your child is drinking chai tea, you can lower the amount of caffeine that they consume by the following steps:

  • Steep tea for less than 30 minutes.
  • Allow the tea to cool.
  • Add honey to the tea.

What are other benefits of chai tea?

There are many benefits to drinking chai tea, including:

  • Warming effect on the body
  • Reduces anxiety
  • Reduces stress
  • Relieves pain
  • Improves sleep
  • Improves digestion
  • Improves heart health
  • Improves liver health

What is the takeaway?

Chai tea has a warming effect on the body and can relieve heartburn and other symptoms of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). You can also buy presteeped tea bags, which you can then steep yourself.

If you’re a parent, you can lower the amount of caffeine that your children and teens drink by steeping tea for less than 30 minutes. Steep tea for less than 5 minutes to reduce the amount of caffeine in the tea.

To reduce your risk of side effects, you can try drinking chai tea with honey instead of sweet tea.

Drinking chai tea once or twice a week is best, but limit your child’s intake to less than 400 milligrams of caffeine daily.

If you have any concerns about the consumption of chai tea, speak with your healthcare provider. They can help you find a safe, natural way to reduce the amount of caffeine in your diet.

Article sources

The National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health. (2019). Caffeine and caffeine-containing products. Retrieved from https://nccih.nih.gov/health-information/coffee-and-caffeine-containing-products

NCCIH. (2019). Caffeine intake in the United States, 2017. Retrieved from https://nccih.nih.gov/health-information/coffee-and-caffeine-containing-products/

The American Academy of Pediatrics. (2017). Child and adolescent caffeine intake: Evidence-based guidelines from the American Academy of Pediatrics. Retrieved from https://www.aap.org/en-us/about-the-aap/guidelines-adults/guidelines-for-child-and-adolescent-caffeine-intake/

For the safety of our patients, staff and visitors, Mayo Clinic has strict masking policies in place. Anyone shown without a mask was either recorded prior to COVID-19 or recorded in a non-patient care area where social distancing and other safety protocols were followed.

Topics in this news story:

  • Coronavirus
  • COVID-19
  • Caffeine
  • Chai tea
  • Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD)
  • Herbs and supplements

The takeaway

Chai tea is a traditional Indian beverage that comes from the spice cumin. It’s made by steeping tea leaves in hot water.

If you want to make chai tea at home, you can purchase presteeped tea bags, or you can purchase chai tea at health food stores.

Images by Freepik

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