Next to water, tea is the most consumed drink in the entire world. It has numerous varieties. But mainly, there are five true teas, which have subtypes to them. Also, various hybrid teas have come into existence recently. All of them count to make a huge list.
But, have you ever wondered if your favorite cup of everyday tea causes any health problems? Some of you might have pondered over this question but not all. However tasty and flavourful, even teas have side effects. Today, let’s talk about them by firstly addressing one of the most frequently asked questions – Is tea dehydrating?
Does Tea Dehydrate You?
Finally, we are here to answer this million-dollar question of so many tea lovers. Tea is such a beverage that people easily get addicted to it. The instant charge your body gets is enough to get you hooked to tea. But consuming too much tea can cause problems.
Tea contains caffeine. The caffeine content in tea is way lesser than coffee but is not negligible. This causes what is called the diuretic effect. A diuretic is a substance that causes the human body to produce more urine. Probably now you understand the reason behind those frequent trips to the washroom after having a cup of tea.
Caffeine causes an increase in the blood flow to the kidneys, encouraging more water or fluids to be flushed out of the body. This process speeds up when you have tea more frequently. It can cause you to lose more water than you are consuming, in turn affecting your hydration.
There surely is no direct relation of dehydration with tea, be it of any kind. Even doctors don’t consider the possibility of it. But just as we discussed, you have to keep sipping on water and lessen the frequency of your tea consumption. This will ensure that a balance is struck between the water lost and gained.
Few teas are completely caffeine-free and are considered quite healthy. You can switch to them if you are noticing signs of dehydration.
Teas That Can Affect Your Hydration
Teas are very unlikely to cause severe dehydration. But, uncontrolled consumption of caffeine-containing teas might affect the hydration process of your body. For the diuretic effect to give rise to slight dehydration, the amount of caffeine consumed has to be greater than 500 mg. This is equivalent to 6-13 cups of tea. No normal person or even tea lovers are likely to have that many cups.
Now let’s find out if some of the most popular teas can dehydrate you.
Black tea is the most consumed type of tea worldwide. It also has quite a bit of caffeine in it. But having said that, black tea is completely safe to consume. The amount of caffeine in one serving of black tea is not enough to cause dehydration. And even if you have a few more cups that too wouldn’t make you dehydrated. This has been clinically proven.
Having black tea will make you visit the washroom more often than not. But this is normal and nothing to worry about. Just keep in mind to drink plenty of water throughout the day. Also, moderate your tea consumption if you drink too much in a day.
Does green tea dehydrate you? Unfortunately, the answer to this question is yes. The tea with numerous brownie points also has side effects and this is one of them. Coming from the same plant as black tea, green teas are less processed. Thus the caffeine content in green tea is slightly higher than in black tea.
More caffeine leads to unnecessary water loss from your body. It causes you to urinate way more frequently than normal. This can cause dehydration and even electrolyte imbalances. But this is only if you have an excessive amount of green tea at once.
Similar to black tea, it’s best to have your favourite green tea in moderation. Also, do not forget to drink lots of water, especially on the day you have green tea. This will replenish your body from the fluids lost through urine.
Iced teas are made using the already existing types of tea. Involvement of any tea that has caffeine can increase the possibility of iced tea being dehydrating. But there has been no proof of this. Also, the addition of ice cubes in these teas is likely to increase the amount of water in them. Thus iced tea causing dehydration is extremely debatable.
Most herbal teas are caffeine-free, but there are exceptions. With more hybrid teas coming into existence even herbal teas now have caffeine in them. The varieties of herbal tea like the Yerba mate, Guayusa, Guarana, and Yaupon can affect the hydration status of your body. Thus, the answer to the question – ‘does herbal tea dehydrate you?’ is quite tricky to answer.
Again, the only way to escape this problem is controlled consumption of tea, be it herbal, black, or white. And for dehydration or not, always drink loads of water. It also helps to keep you healthy overall.
Other Related Side Effects of Tea
Teas are known for their charming taste and wonderful benefits. But just like everything else, they also have a dark side to their usage. The side effects are very few compared to the goodness of it but are still there.
More or less every tea has caffeine in it, which acts as a health problem. It kicks in fine when you need a boost but can also keep you up at night. Feeling nauseous or dizzy is a lesser-known side effect. This can happen when an excessive amount of tea is consumed on an empty stomach. Very rare, but the caffeine in tea can cause acid reflux too.
Pregnant women are told to stay away from tea or coffee, as it can result in severe complications. Reduction in iron absorption and increase in mental health problems like anxiety and stress are also common side effects. Maybe not like drugs, but regular consumption of tea can get you addicted to it. This can give you long-term headaches for real and result in caffeine dependence.
Tea as a drink is loved by all of us reading this. Surely, it is surprising, even heartbreaking for some to know that tea has so many side effects. But that is how it is. But the best part is none of these can turn severe if you moderate your tea consumption. You can still drink a cup per day without hesitation.
We hope you haven’t, but let us know if you ever experienced any of these. And, to avoid them further do follow the suggestions provided.