It will not be wrong to say that the East-Asian origin medicinal herb has now widely become a part of our daily routine. Yes, I am talking about “Green Tea”.
Originated in China, this medicinal herb is now a healthier elixir for millions of people worldwide. Green tea has now become an essential part of our dietary routine. It is so because of its proven health benefits.
Green tea is not new to humankind, it has been used for centuries as a medicinal tool in Ayurveda from India and traditional Chinese medicine. It was used to treat viral fevers, blood pressure, and heart diseases.
Green tea is derived from the plant known as Camellia Sinensis. It is one of the least processed tea among the other teas. That’s why it is more beneficial for our health as compared to that of the other teas.
Now, if it is beneficial for our health, then the question arises how does it affect our health?
Well, if we see the chemical composition of Green tea, then we find that it contains epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG), l-theanine, potassium, iron, calcium, and caffeine.
The “Caffeine”, is the compound for which a person should be concerned when taking a Green tea. All the major side effects that we are going to discuss further arise due to this compound only. So, let’s dive deeper into the nature of side effects that one should not ignore if he/she is having Green tea in his/her dietary routine.
While drinking tea is considered mostly safe for adults, there are a few side effects to keep in mind. These side effects are closely related to the amount of consumption and sensitivity to Caffeine. So, most of the side effects can be avoided by putting a limit on your daily consumption.
And the list of side effects goes like this;
10. Irregular Bowel Movements
A 1984 study concluded that Green tea is a potent stimulant of gastric acid which may cause stomach irritation when consumed on an empty stomach. Green tea contains tannins that are responsible for digestive issues including constipation, acid reflux, and nausea.
If you are brewing Green tea with hot water above 180 F, then it may increase the chances of irregular bowel movements. So, it is advisable to use water heated between 160 and 180 F. You can also add milk and sugar to minimize the effect of gastric acid.
Caffeine present in the tea makes it more effective in causing diarrhea if consumed in large amounts. It makes the colon muscles contract and release more frequently, resulting in frequent visits to the toilet.
To avoid these side effects, do not drink green tea on an empty stomach. Instead, consume green tea after each meal.
9. Not Good For Migraines
The Caffeine present in green tea makes it a bad choice for those who are dealing with migraines. Caffeine, for some individuals, is responsible for headaches. So, it is good that you keep a proper distance from having it. If you can’t control your senses then you can consume green tea occasionally. However, you should avoid having it every day if you suffer from daily headaches.
8. Dizziness & Motion Sickness
If you are a crazy lover of green tea and consume it in large amounts(more than 5 cups a day), then you might get trapped in this problem. The caffeine in green tea can lead you to feel dizzy and lightheaded. It reduces the blood flow to the brain, resulting in motion sickness. In rare cases, it can also lead to convulsions.
So, to avoid this, make a proper intake plan for the daily green tea consumption and follow it strictly. Try to limit your daily consumption to atmost 5 cups a day.
7. Bleeding Disorders
Consumption of green tea may trigger bleeding disorders in certain people. Our body requires fibrinogen, a protein, that helps in blood clotting. The chemicals present in green tea inhibit the formation of this protein, resulting in bleeding disorders. Those who have problems related to blood clotting should avoid having green tea.
6. Sleep Disorders
It is found that people who are sensitive to caffeine have developed sleep disorders after having green tea regularly. However, the amount of caffeine is very low in green tea but it can bring noticeable effects in caffeine-sensitive people.
Green tea also contains l-theanine, a chemical that helps to induce calm, and helps in getting good sleep by lowering heart rate. But, the studies have shown that the effect of l-theanine is overpowered by caffeine, resulting in sleep disorders. So, it is advisable for caffeine-sensitive people to have green tea at least 5 hours before bed.
5. Irregular Heartbeat and Blood Pressure
This side effect is usually seen in very few people and yet there is more research to happen on its nature. This is because different researches have shown different results in terms of the effect of green tea on blood pressure.
Some small studies have shown that green tea may cause irregular heartbeat, whereas, some have shown that drinking green tea can help lower blood pressure. Another study found that caffeine present in green tea can raise blood pressure in certain individuals. So, it is advised that the person suffering from heart disease should seek medical advice from a healthcare professional before consuming green tea.
4. Anemia and Iron Deficiency
A 2001 study reports that green tea extract reduces the absorption of non-heme iron by 25%. Thus making it a life-threatening drink for anemia patients who have the disease due to iron deficiency.
Non-heme iron is the primary type of iron that is found in eggs, dairy, and plant foods such as beans. It shows a protective effect against inflammation and chronic diseases.
So, to reduce the impact of green tea on iron deficiency, you should drink green tea between your meals, which consists of foods like beans, red meat, eggs, broccoli, etc. It enhances iron absorption.
One more way to consume green tea is by squeezing lemon into your tea, as lemon contains Vitamin C that helps in non-heme iron absorption.
3. Bone Health
Excess consumption of anything can ultimately affect you in a negative way, the same goes for green tea. If you are an excessive consumer of green tea, then this side effect could meet you in the near future.
Excessive intake of green tea increases the risk of bone disease such as osteoporosis in sensitive individuals. Certain chemicals present in green tea decrease the body’s capacity to absorption of Calcium, resulting in a deterioration of bone health.
The best way to tackle/prevent this side effect is to limit your daily intake of green tea to 2 to 3 cups a day. If you do not do so, then you should start taking Calcium supplements parallelly in order to prevent Calcium deficiency.
2. Liver Disease
One more disadvantage of excess consumption of green tea is Liver damage. As mentioned earlier, green tea contains caffeine, which is the root of various side effects. In a similar fashion, caffeine coagulation in the body can lead to liver damage.
Experts believe that excess consumption of green tea can enhance caffeine coagulation in the body which can stress the liver, resulting in liver damage. Hence, to avoid this you should make a proper plan for green tea intake. The best way is to limit your daily consumption to not more than 4 to 5 cups a day.
1. Risk In Pregnancy & Breastfeeding
The compounds like tannins and caffeine, present in green tea can trigger pregnancy risks in females. Experts say that green tea in small amounts no more than 2 cups per day is safe during pregnancy and breastfeeding.
You should know that the tea you take has caffeine in it that directly passes to the babies during breastfeeding. So, it is important for breastfeeding females to monitor their intake in coordination with their physicians.
Drinking more than 2 cups per day can lead to miscarriage and birth defects in children. Make sure to keep your caffeine intake below 200 milligrams per day. In addition, drinking a large amount may cause neural tube birth defects in babies.
Are you afraid of green tea now? Are those above side effects threatening you? Oh! don’t worry, as we all know if something has a bright side then it would have a darker side too. The same goes for green tea, but the best part is that it is having a relatively low potential for negative effects with respect to its advantages.
Green Tea is approved by FDA and is considered safe if consumed in a moderate amount. So, you can now freely choose to have green tea in your diet by strictly considering its intake dosage. Because you’ve seen that most of the negative effects arise due to its excess consumption and caffeine content. However, It is always recommended to consult your doctor if you develop any side effects after taking green tea. As it can go worse if ignored.
> The points & facts in the content are taken from the following legit sources;
9. https://toxnet.nlm.nih.gov/cgi-bin/sis/search/a?dbs+hsdb:@[email protected]+8162