Tea and Caffeine
Chemically, caffeine is a member of the xanthene family. Caffeine is odorless, has a bitter taste, and is highly soluble in hot water. Caffeine occurs naturally in coffee, tea, cocoa, kola nuts and a variety of other plants.
In moderation, caffeine has beneficial effects on the body; it increases alertness, stimulates metabolism, and contributes to an increase in dopamine levels in the blood, which improves mood.
A Department of Nutritional Services™ report provides the following information on caffeine contents for tea made with loose leaves:
· Black Tea: 23 – 110 mg
· Oolong Tea: 12 – 55 mg
· Green Tea: 8 – 36 mg
· White Tea: 6 – 25 mg
For those who are sensitive to caffeine, we recommend using a little less and brewing your teas with slightly cooler water for a shorter period of time. Green, white, and lightly oxidized oolong teas are good choices, as they tend to benefit from lower water temperatures and shorter steeping times.
Since nearly 80% of the caffeine will be extracted within 30 seconds of steeping, you can easily remove most of the caffeine in any tea by following these guidelines:
· Steep the tea in hot water for 45 seconds. Discard the liquid. Then, add water to the leaves and brew for the amount of time that is appropriate for that particular tea.