Why Does Tea Give Me Heartburn But Not Coffee?
Heartburn is no fun; it can be a painful, uncomfortable and sometimes embarrassing symptom. But why does it happen with tea, and not coffee? Here is what you need to know about why tea can cause heartburn and what you can do if you are experiencing it.
The Difference Between Tea and Coffee
Tea is an herbal beverage and is naturally high in caffeine and tannins. Tannins are plant-based chemicals which bind to other molecules, particularly those containing proteins. They give tea its bitter, astringent taste and can also cause it to be more acidic. Coffee is made from roasted, ground beans and is much stronger in caffeine, often lower in acidity, and also contains oils which can be difficult to digest.
The Connection to Heartburn
When you consume drinks like tea and coffee, they can irritate the lining of your esophagus and stomach, causing the build-up of acid which leads to heartburn. The tannins in tea are the main culprit, as they can increase stomach acid production, which irritates the lower esophageal sphincter. This is the muscle valve which keeps stomach acid in the stomach and can be weakened by consuming large amounts of tea or coffee.
What To Do About It
The best way to prevent heartburn when drinking tea is to follow these simple steps:
- Limit Your Intake: Cut down on the amount of tea you consume, as too much caffeine and tannins create acidic levels which can contribute to heartburn.
- Change the pH: Try adding a teaspoon of honey or lemon juice to your tea to reduce its acidity levels.
- Drink Slowly: Sip your tea slowly and avoid gulping it down, as this can cause the stomach to overproduce acid and lead to heartburn.
By following these simple steps, you can reduce your risk of experiencing heartburn when drinking tea.
By understanding the difference between tea and coffee and their particular triggers for heartburn, it is easy to know why tea can cause the issue but not coffee. Understanding the cause of your symptoms will help you take the necessary action to reduce the likelihood of experiencing heartburn when drinking tea.