Bitter tea upsetting your stomach? 4 reasons why, and how to help!


Does tea upset your stomach? Have you ever had a cup of tea and it just didn’t agree with you?

Maybe you have stopped drinking tea because you figure if this is the way tea is going to make me feel, what’s the point? The reason I am bringing this up, the reason that we are having this live chat is that I have had a friend who started talking to me not too long ago about her experiences with tea – they weren’t good.

She had tea at a couple of different places, every time her stomach hurts afterward and she stopped drinking tea altogether, and this couldn’t have been easy for her to share with me because I own a tea company and she knows that I love tea, alright? And she just wanted to share it with me to find out, “okay! Hey, am I doing something wrong?”


Bitter tea


And are there things that she could have done better after doing a little bit of prodding, I asked some questions, and I got some information from her, and I want to share those things with you so that you can brew a better cup of tea. Maybe you have given up on tea, maybe you have decided that certain teas are not for you because you have never had one that suited you, that made you feel good. So let’s talk a little bit about what I learned from my friend, and then I will take that information, and I will tell you what you can do so that you can avoid these things in the future, so you can make a better cup of tea.

So first off, the kinds of tea that you are drinking are important. When I talked to my friend, she told me that she had tried a couple of teas a couple of different ways. She tried teabags, you know steeping her own teabag. She also tried drinking tea that was brewed at a coffee shop. So a barista had made her tea, and she did have loose-leaf tea that barista brewed for her.

So that was the first thing I asked her, and then I asked her what the tea tasted like, and she said, it was bitter. And I asked her specifically, did you had that puckering flavor in your mouth, like your mouth puckered when you drink it? And she said, yes.

That something… that bitter taste is something that you want to look out for, and we will talk a little bit more about why tea can be bitter and why it creates that puckering sensation in our mouths?

She said that she had drunk the tea both times or all the times on empty stomach, and she said that wasn’t sure how long that tea was brewed, but there were 2 specific things that stood out to me when she said that, one was – she explained how she brewed the teabag tea, and what she did is, she left the teabag in the teacup as she was drinking it and so that would have been in the teacup for over 5-minutes at least.

Bitter leaf tea

As far as the barista goes, she trusted the barista to brew the tea the way it was supposed to be brewed, okay? I asked her if she put anything in it just to cover all of our bases, and she said, she did put sweetener in it. Now that may or may not make a difference in the future in terms of your tea drinking habits, but it is something to keep in mind because our bodies react to things differently, and for some of us sweeteners may give us a stomachache. So it’s just something to be mindful of. So what causes the tea to become bitter and what causes our stomachs to be upset in some cases? In the first place, it’s all about tea chemistry. Alright? Tea leaves contain complex compounds, and those are like caffeine, polyphenols, amino acids, minerals.

A lot of different compounds inside of the Bitter leaf tea, and if you go back to watch some of the other videos. I talked a little bit about tea processing, and for different kinds of teas – how these teas are processed and depending upon how a tea leaf is processed, it’s going to bring out more or less of those complex compounds, alright? The compounds undergo changes when those leaves are processed into what we want to drink, right? So we have got green tea, we have white tea, black tea, oolong – all the different teas have a different process, and each of those processes brings out different compounds.

And when we are talking about black teas, those are going to be the most caffeinated, those are going to have some of the caffeine compounds that will come out. So in addition to the different compounds, or actually let me take a step back, so the reason why some of these compounds exist in the tea leaf in the first place is to protect the tea leaf from predators.

herbal Bitter tea

Now they have a slightly bitter taste some of them, which is meant to fend off predators. However, as humans have decided that tea can be created to be pleasant, to be something that we enjoy. It just depends on how we process the tea leaf, and also how we brew that same tea leaf. We just have to learn to brew our cups better, alright? So if we are brewing it in a way that creates more bitterness, that brings out some of the bitterness of these compounds within the tea leaf, then yeah, our tea is going to be bitter, and it may, in fact, make our stomachs hurt.

So let’s talk about 4 ways to keep the tea from upsetting our stomachs. Now the first way is to just not steep our tea leaf longer than directed. So for instance, if you are brewing a tea leaf that has directions on it like in a packet – follow the directions on the packet. Now if your stomach still becoming upset, you may want to decrease the time that you are brewing your tea leaf, or maybe you want to lower the temperature of the water.

Now that takes me to number 2, let me come back to number 1, but number 2 is going to be steep loose-leaf teas. Now the tea leafs themselves, although they have these complex compounds, it’s it’s easier to over-brew… let me take a step back again – when we are talking about loose-leaf tea versus the tea fanning’s or the tea dust that you find in the teabags, there is going to be a big difference. So if we are over-brewing our teabags, that’s going to make the tea even more bitter than it might let say loose-leaf tea – one that has larger leaves, and the reason for that is because the loose-leaf… excuse me, the CTC, the tea fanning’s, the tea dust that is inside that little teabag is meant to be brewed quicker.

So if you leave your tea bags steeping inside your cup, it’s going to brew faster, and it’s going to become bitter faster, alright? So take the bag out before you start sipping if you are drinking a teabag, you just have to be aware that if you keep that teabag in there, it’s going to make the tea more bitter, and then your stomach may hurt afterward. And as far as my friend’s reliance on a barista to brew the tea right, that’s not always the case, okay? They do the best they can, but they are not always the most educated when it comes to brewing times and hot water. So for instance, when we talked a little bit about this in the prior videos, if you are talking about a white tea, you are not going to be brewing it quite as long as you are a black tea, and you are certainly not going to brew white tea in boiling water as you would with the black tea, because the hot water, the boiling water is what you need to extract the flavors from the black tea.

brew tea

You don’t your water as hot to extract flavor from a white tea. A lot of times coffee shops, they are not going to be aware of this, the barista is not going to be aware of this, so that’s just something to keep in mind if you are going to pay $5 to $7 for a really nice cup of tea at a place like that, you want to just take control because otherwise, you might be wasting your money.

Alright! So that takes us to number 3 – you may not want to drink tea on an empty stomach. This is something that has to just judge for yourself. If you are drinking a tea-like black tea, a strong tea that’s multi and robust, and even green teas sometimes can be a little bit bitter if you steep them too long and you don’t have anything to eat beforehand. It’s just like coffee, right?

If you ever had a cup of coffee on an empty stomach, and you feel like the kind of the acid of buildup in your stomach, and it just doesn’t feel good. You just have to be mindful of that, and you know to be aware that you need to have a snack or something while you are eating or before you are drinking your tea. And then as far as sweeteners go, that’s up to you, decide for yourself how sweeteners might affect your stomach.

I mean they affect everybody differently, so that’s just a personal choice, and then another thing to think about and this comes from personal experience is, be aware that if you drink tea while you are taking certain medications, you might want to space your medications apart from your tea, and I had an experience that was not fine, and it was at work while I was preparing for a hearing or a trial, and I just remember that I was in domestic supervisor’s office and I was feeling sick to my stomach, and the only explanation for it because it never happened before or since is that I’d had my tea and my medication at the same time.

I had something to eat with the tea, but it just apparently was not enough. So be aware that if you are taking medications, don’t take it while or around the time you are drinking your tea because it may not agree with you, and it was not fun. Alright! So the next time you are brewing your tea, ask yourself a few questions, okay! Just what kind of tea are you drinking? Are you drinking teabag tea where you need to look at the directions?

Are you drinking loose-leaf tea? There should also be some kind of guideline for that too, right? So you don’t need to brew your white teas as long as you were your black teas or as a hot of water, right? And then how long are you brewing your tea? Are you steeping it for a really long time? Or are you able to take the teabag out and so you can figure out, alright! It’s not as bitter when I take the teabag out earlier, and maybe you have a better chance of not being sick to your stomach.

Are you drinking your tea on an empty stomach because then you are going to have a higher chance of having your stomach hurt? Are you taking any medications, any supplements with your tea? That might be something that could cause your stomach to hurt. And you can also just try drinking different teas. One tea that is famous for being easy to drink is bitter leaf tea. There are lots of different bitter leaf tea and you can just any of those.

You may just be used to black tea, and black tea always doesn’t agree with people, and the same thing with green tea – it just doesn’t always agree with people. So try different ones and see what you like better and what might agree with your system better. It’s all about being mindful of what’s going on in your body, right? So there are a couple of things that I have done that might help you out.


So first off what I have done is, I am going to post in the comments section a link to the blog that goes over everything that we already talked about in this video, it is just a summary of it. So go ahead and click on that, and when you click on that it will also take you to another link, and I will link to that too if you just want to go directly to it, but it is a link to a guide – it’s a quick guide to the 6 teas, and then you can get an idea of what kind of teas you like to drink.

Maybe you are just not into white or green teas, maybe you like black teas more. But it gives you a quick guide description of these teas to make you more educated about your choices. So be sure to tell me what you thought of this video in the comments below, like and share this video if you like it, and if you are on YouTube, hit subscribe and you will get other videos in the future, alright? And join me every Tuesday at 6 PM Pacific Time and I will answer all your questions about tea.

Read More: How to tackle various health issues

About aatifriaz

Aatif riaz is a professional writer and SEO professional. He loves to write articles about health and technology.

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