Sadly, most herbal teas are mildly acidic. If you wish to start drinking herbal tea, you may wonder if drinking tea can hurt your teeth.
Will it increase stomach acidity and trigger your acid reflux?
Don’t worry, there are ways to make herbal tea less acidic.
If you choose home-brewed tea, however, it’s not as acidic as other herbal teas. In that case, it won’t damage your teeth and cause stomach discomfort.
However, the acidity of the herbal tea will depend on several factors, like the type of tea, how you drink it, and how often you drink this beverage.
Furthermore, what you add to this drink can also affect its acidity.
How to Make Herbal Tea Less Acidic?
1) Add Water to Make It Less Acidic
The easiest way to make herbal tea less acidic is to just add more water.
The pH level of water is 7, which can help reduce the acidity of the tea.
However, you shouldn’t add more water to the point that you can no longer taste its flavor.
2) Prepare Herbal Tea Properly
How you prepare the herbal tea can affect the acidity of the tea.
- The right way to make a cup of tea is to boil water in a pan/kettle.
- Then, before you add the tea leaves, turn off the heat first.
- After adding the leaves, cover the vessel with a lid.
- Allow the tea to brew for up to 7 minutes. But it depends on the variety of tea you are brewing.
- Don’t add sugar or lemon to the tea as it will make the drink acidic.
- If you wish to sweeten your tea, you may use jaggery, which is alkaline.
On the other hand, if you are prone to GERD, you may consume herbal tea that’s friendly to your stomach. These would include chamomile, green tea, and lavender.
Read: Is Herbal Tea Any Good?
3) Add Milk to Produce Less Acid
Some people find their herbal tea less acidic after adding milk to it.
But if you’re going to add milk to your herbal tea, you need to add a moderate amount.
Then again, adding milk might not be helpful if you’re prone to heartburn or acid reflux.
If you need to add milk, you must opt for regular milk. Pasteurized or processed milk lacks natural bacteria.
With no natural bacteria present, it makes milk more acidic.
However, if you have difficulty digesting dairy, then adding milk to your tea won’t do any good to your stomach.
Instead, opt for alkaline water to reduce its acidity.
4) Choose the Right Tea
As mentioned, some teas are more acidic than other teas. Compared to coffee, black and green tea are less acidic.
Black tea has a pH of 6.37. Coffee, on the other hand, has 5.35 pH.
What Makes Herbal Tea Acidic?
Tea leaves need to undergo an oxidation process to make herbal tea. The more the leaves undergo processing, the more acidic the tea will be.
That’s why younger tea leaves are more preferred by many because their pH is neutral to alkaline.
Then again, it still depends on how the younger leaves are processed.
Another reason herbal tea becomes acidic is the addition of spices, like fruit, citrus, and spices. If you opt for herbal tea with berries, then expect it to be acidic.
The steeping time can also affect how acidic the herbal tea will be. The longer you steep it, the lower its pH will be.
Furthermore, over-steeping can make the tea bitter.
Is it Bad for Your Health to Drink Acidic Herbal Tea?
Loose leaf tea isn’t harmful. It may be acidic but it won’t harm your body.
Then again, too much of anything can still be bad for you.
If you are sensitive to acidic drinks but you still want to drink herbal tea, then you should stick to black tea and green tea blends.
You may also choose jasmine green tea without additions. Typically, this tea is neutral.
Many herbal tea blends now have a green tea base. The purpose is to balance the acidity of the tart blend.
For a low-acid tea option, just choose black tea.
Can Drinking Tea be Harmful to Your Teeth?
A beverage with a pH between 2 and 4 can be perilous to your teeth. Fortunately, most teas are nowhere found in that range.
If you are worried about your tea, you may drink your tea differently. For instance, you may drink it through a straw.
You should also avoid swishing tea in your mouth or hold it for too long before you swallow it.
After you drink hot or cold tea, don’t brush your teeth immediately.
You must wait for 30 minutes before you brush your teeth. In that way, you’re allowing your teeth to harden up again.
Keep in mind that after drinking an acidic beverage, your teeth’ enamel softens. Thus, if you brush your teeth immediately, the action can cause actual damage to the enamel.
What Herbal Tea to Drink for GERD?
Herbal tea is useful in improving your digestion and soothing your stomach problems. However, some herbal teas aren’t great for acid reflux.
For instance, peppermint tea can trigger acid reflux. Instead, opt for chamomile, marshmallow, and licorice. These herbal teas can soothe your GERD symptoms.
Licorice tea, for one, can increase mucus counting of your esophageal lining. It helps in calming your stomach acid.
If you need to add milk, you may choose soy, almond, flax, cashew, or coconut milk as an alternative to skim milk.
Almond milk has an alkaline composition that can neutralize stomach acidity.
5) Finding Good Quality Tea
How acidic herbal tea is will depend on its type. When finding a good quality tea, you may rely on your senses.
For instance, if you buy leafy green teas, make sure to purchase unbroken leaves. Broken tea leaves can indicate machine harvest.
If the tea leaves are harvested through a machine, the leaves can taste bitter.
Smell the herbal tea. Premium-quality teas smell grassy, fresh, and soothing. If there’s no aroma, then it’s a low-quality tea.
A good quality tea tastes fresh. It must awaken your senses. For instance, if you are brewing green tea, the taste must not be too sharp or bitter.
High-quality herbal teas will give you a lingering after-taste. If there’s no after-taste, then it’s a sign that it’s a low-quality tea.
How to make herbal tea less acidic? You should look for high-quality tea, first. Then, shorten the steeping time. If you think that your herbal tea is still acidic, add more water to it.
What herbal teas can you drink if you suffer from GERD? Here are some of the teas you can try.