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Did You Know…Why Drinking Tea Can Make You Nauseous?

By Published On: May 31, 20242.7 min readViews: 1880 Comments on Did You Know…Why Drinking Tea Can Make You Nauseous?
Welcome to Did You Know, a bite-sized column where we aim to make wellness more digestible. On the agenda for today: why drinking tea on an empty stomach can make you feel nauseous.


Drinking tea every day has a ton of health benefits. But if you’ve ever had green tea on an empty stomach, it may have made you nauseous (and maybe even google if you’re pregnant). So why does green tea make you nauseous?


The main reason has to do with tannins. These polyphenols have a variety of neuroprotective benefits, and they are what gives tea its bitter, dry taste. But, depending on how sensitive your digestive system is and how much tea you drink, they can irritate your stomach and cause symptoms like nausea and stomachache.

“Green tea contains a tannin called Epigallocatechin-3-gallate, also referred to as ECGC, which provides incredible antioxidant benefits, but can also cause mild stomach irritation, nausea, gas, and heartburn in some people,” says Serena Poon, celebrity chef, nutritionist, and founder of Culinary Alchemy.

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Additionally, both the tannins and the caffeine contentin green tea can cause an increase in stomach acid, which may lead to gastrointestinal symptoms and heartburn.
consumed on an empty stomach or in excess. Some research points to tea as a possible trigger
for gastroesophageal reflux as well.

Tannins and caffeine are also present in other teas made from the leaves of the Camellia sinensis plant—oolong, white, and black—meaning these can all cause similar symptoms when consumed on an empty stomach.


There are several things that may help prevent tea-induced nausea, the first and most obvious one being, ofc, to drink your tea after a meal.

“In my work in Culinary Alchemy, it is paramount that my
clients listen to their body, even if what they find seems to contradict popular dietary recommendations,” Serena says. “If green tea upsets your stomach, you may either try consuming it alongside food or seeking antioxidants from other foods.”

If, for some reason, you have to drink your tea on an empty stomach, try adding in some milk or plant-based milk so the tannins bind to the milk proteins instead of your stomach lining.

Depending on your sensitivity, you can also try reducing the amount of tea you drink or brewing it for less time (the longer you brew tea, the more tannins will be present).

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The content provided in this article is provided for information purposes only and is not a substitute for professional advice and consultation, including professional medical advice and consultation; it is provided with the understanding that Poosh, LLC (“Poosh”) is not engaged in the provision or rendering of medical advice or services. The opinions and content included in the article are the views of the author only, and Poosh does not endorse or recommend any such content or information, or any product or service mentioned in the article. You understand and agree that Poosh shall not be liable for any claim, loss, or damage arising out of the use of, or reliance upon any content or information in the article.
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