When looking for teas with lower amounts of caffeine there’s plenty of good options out there, including herbal, decaf, Rooibos and white tea. All of these are good ways to get all the deliciousness of a good cup of tea without the caffeine content, but do come with their own characters and tastes to get grips with.
In the hustle and bustle of everyday life, there’s plenty of good reasons to look for a cup of tea that will help you relax rather than keep you up all night with too much energy. So we’re going to break down a few major varieties of tea that should fit the bill, as well as listing a few to stay away from if you want a good night’s rest. But, before we get to that, let’s understand a little more about caffeine.
What is caffeine?
Caffeine is a chemical substance that’s naturally found in the leaves and fruits of certain plants that we find out in the wild – including tea plants. For most of us, it’s known as the stuff that helps wake us up and keeps us alert – whether it comes in the form of coffee, tea or even energy drinks.
In other words, caffeine is considered to be a stimulant that can help to increase brain activity, alertness and overall levels of attention and metabolism. It also stimulates the movement of chemicals around the body and is also linked to the production of adrenaline. increasing brain activity and nervous system activity. It also helps to circulate the chemicals around the body and has been linked to the production of adrenaline. For many of us, drinks with a high amount of caffeine content help us wake up when we feel sleepy or need a few moments of extra concentration.
Why should we avoid it?
While a higher amount of caffeine content in small or regulated amounts isn’t necessarily bad for you, there are numerous times when you should consider a hot drink without caffeine inside it.
Increased anxiety – if you’re prone to anxiety or general feelings of uneasiness, caffeine could actually amplify them. By having too much, you’ll feel more unsettled, jittery and even panicked.
Trouble sleeping – For many of us, drinking tea or coffee with caffeine is intended to wake us up in the morning, which means it’s not a good idea to have it later at night. To avoid having problems sleeping, we recommend not having caffeine any later than in the afternoon.
Digestive problems – If you have too much caffeine and have a sensitive stomach, you may end up with discomfort and loose stool. If you do have these symptoms after a strong tea or coffee, consider switching to drinks with lower caffeine levels.
Forming a habit – Caffeine can be mildly addictive if it becomes part of your daily routine. Without it, you might feel like you’re not as ‘awake’ as you should be. Going without caffeine for several hours may lead to withdrawal symptoms in those who typically have a lot of it every day.
Heart rate and blood pressure – There is a direct correlation between your heart rate and caffeine consumption. This may be welcome for some of us who are needing a kick, but for others who are prone to heart problems or high blood pressure, caffeine can actually be a danger. If you do have any of these conditions, always check with a doctor.
Tiredness – Although caffeine does wake us up, it makes the ‘comedown’ even more pronounced. Coming from a feeling of alertness and awakeness to a normal state will feel even heavier for those who often rely on the feeling that caffeine gives from our tea.
Which teas should I avoid?
If you love tea blends but want fewer milligrams of caffeine per cup, these are the ones to avoid. There’s nothing wrong with having these drinks in moderation, but if you are trying to reduce your levels of caffeine content, here’s what to look out for:
- Yerba – 85mg per cup
- Silver Needle White Tea – 75mg per cup
- Matcha – 70mg per cup
- Black Tea – 48mg per cup
- Green Tea – 40 mg per cup
- And coffee, with about 100mg, give or take.
One thing to bear in mind is that if you really still want one of the above, you can always reduce the brewing time, and use more water in general. That way you’ll get less caffeine while still being able to enjoy the taste you like most. However, it’s likely you’ll be able to find a good substitute from our list below. And, if you prefer loose leaf tea, you should be able to find alternatives with no problems.
Which caffeine-free teas should I try?
Herbal fruit tea blends
Herbal teas are typically made without the traditional tea plant that is used in most teas. Meaning it can very often be entirely caffeine-free! Although make sure to read the label because there are certain types of herbal tea that contain compounds similar to caffeine such as guayusa and guarana.
Our herbal tea recommendations:
Stash Tea, Fruity Herbal Tea Six Flavor Assortment – For a sample of different caffeine-free herbal tea blends to try.
Bigelow Sweet Dreams Herbal Tea Bags – To help you rest easier after a busy or stressful day.
Celestial Seasonings Herbal Tea, Cinnamon Apple Spice – For a sweet and spicy blend that tastes amazing and gives you a natural boost.
Unlike a lot of the common varieties of tea leaves that are created with the camellia plant, Rooibos tea is created with the South African plant bearing the same name. Which means it’s entirely caffeine-free. With an earthy taste and fairly light feel, this tea is a great option for any time of the day.
Our Rooibos tea recommendations:
Numi Organic Tea Rooibos Chai – High quality and organic tea leaves with a distinctive flavor, naturally caffeine-free.
Celestial Seasonings Madagascar Vanilla Red Blend – A rooibos tea and vanilla blend that has a softer taste.
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Unlike most of the other teas on this list, this tea is not 100% caffeine-free. About 10-15mg to be exact. Which although significant is far less than some of the more caffeinated teas like Black or Yerba Mate. So depending on how well you handle small amounts of caffeine, a cup of white tea can be a great way to unwind.
Our white tea recommendations:
Uncle Lee’s Organic White Tea – A soft flavor that is naturally low in caffeine makes this a popular choice for white tea drinkers.
Twinings of London “Fujian Chinese Pure White Tea – What can we say; it’s Twinings, so you know that it contains nothing but quality blends!
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Due to the nature of the decaffeination process in black tea, decaf black tea contains a small amount of residual substance but is widely considered as caffeine-free. That being said; the amount of caffeine left over (~2mg) is pretty negligible. Decaf is a great alternative to the other caffeine-free teas because it allows you to choose some of your favorite tea flavors without the kick. If you love green tea, you can of course get caffeine-free green tea to still enjoy the goodness it can bring.
Our decaffeinated tea recommendations:
Taylors of Harrogate Decaffeinated Breakfast Tea – A very popular tea to have first thing in the morning, with all the black tea flavor and none of the caffeine
PG Tips Decaf – One of the most popular decaffeinated black tea brands in the UK and staple of any supermarket shelf.
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Of course, there are so many other caffeine-free teas we would recommend with plenty of health benefits: but then this article would be way too long! We just want to give a shoutout to different varieties of tea such as Chamomile, Peppermint, Lavender, Valerian and Ginger Root, just to name a few! Whether you have loose leaf tea or tea bag options, well, that’s up to you! Herbal teas are always good, so go ahead and explore!
Which types of tea have the least caffeine
Out of all the major tea families, the only ones that usually don’t have any amount of caffeine are herbal and rooibos. With decaf being close behind with only about 2mg per cup (which basically equates to nothing when digested). The reason for this is that caffeine occurs naturally within the tea plant used in making most varieties of tea: Camellia Sinensis.
In order from lowest to highest caffeine content. (Can vary depending on many factors)
- 0mg – Most herbal teas or Rooibos
- 2mg – Decaffeinated
- 10-15mg – White
- 25-35mg – Green
- 35-50mg – Oolong and Pu’erh
- 50mg+ – Black Tea and Yerba Mate
The world of caffeine-free tea is bigger than you think!
We hope that the above article has shed some light onto caffeine in tea, and which types of tea you can enjoy without having to worry about having too much of the stimulant. Hot drinks can be used for relaxing and enjoyment as much as giving you a caffeine kick.
Since this article was about caffeine levels, we’ve barely scratched the surface on the world of herbal and other decaffeinated teas, so do go ahead and explore the rest of our site for even more recommendations. And, as always, if you have any teas that you think we’ve missed out, just get in touch!
Last update on 2021-10-22 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API