Tea and stomach trouble

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Tea and stomach trouble

Postby Maneki Neko » Mar 5th, '13, 01:36

I have been diagnosed with mild gastritis after a gastroscopy last September, and since that time I'm careful with spicy and rich foods and my reflux has reduced.

However, I still drink (and eat) lots of tea as I can hardly do without it. I've heard tea is bad for your stomach when you have gastritis and some other conditions. Since last Friday I have some stomach pains on and off which are relieved when I eat something. I wonder if it's got something to do with especially eating the leaves. I'm kinda afraid of an ulcer...

What are your experiences with tea and stomach trouble? Is it safe to keep drinking (and eating) green tea, and is there a way to reduce the burden on my stomach, like eating specific things before drinking for example? I am also taking omeprazole btw.

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Re: Tea and stomach trouble

Postby amaranto » Mar 5th, '13, 02:23

I also have gastritis that flares up pretty bad every few months. As far as I can tell, tea has never aggravated it and doesn't, say, make my heartburn worse when I drink tea at the same time--and I drink all kinds of tea. Everyone is different, though. My dietician recommended that I not eat a lot of raw fiber every day, and she was very right about that. Tea is generally boiled, though, so I have no idea what it would do to an upset stomach if eaten.

I've wondered if tea with ginger in it would help my gastritis at all. I think I'll give it a try.

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Re: Tea and stomach trouble

Postby teaisme » Mar 5th, '13, 17:32

Maneki Neko wrote: I am also taking omeprazole


I hope this isn't long term...

I am assuming you are taking the prilosec to limit the amount of acid in your stomach. I know I am recommending you put something acidic into your mouth.

Have you tried, some rice noodles, boiled with finely chopped ginger, add generous apple cider vinegar (with mother) towards very very end of cooking, along with soy sauce. Meat and veggie it to your liking. If you have hq noodles, spring water, organic soy sauce, and vinegar that's satisfying enough on its own for me. Mushroom assortment with some scallions makes my day though :mrgreen:

Also consider organic miso noodle soup, or really anything fermented as part of your diet.

As for tea, you may want to consider shorter infusions, smaller pot, but more leaf (but basically same amount since you are downsizing teapot).
Brewing multiple infusions like this usually makes something more gentle on the stomach then say brewing in a big pot for 3-4 mins first infusion and longer after that. Plus you space your intake more , instead of gulping down one huge infusion in a couple of minutes. A lot of people enjoy an extended brew at the end of the last infusion to get as much from the leaf as they can. This can be pretty rough on the body if you underestimated the teas endurance or botched the brewing along the way.

I think often you may hear about tea and stomach issues within the heavy drinking Asian tea communities and on this forum too. I'm guessing they are probably not the same set of causes in relation to the acid reflux issues prevalent in the west.

Maybe you are experiencing both as of last Friday.
Higher oxidation and roasting can tone a tea down for your stomach. Things people like to recommend that are gentle are , high oxi sweet oolongs, roasted grain teas/kukicha, aged shou puerh.
You can test to see. :mrgreen:

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Re: Tea and stomach trouble

Postby Chip » Mar 5th, '13, 17:55

My own personal experience, the short version. I began drinking tea in 1999. For the first years I started each day with a black tea, then moved onto Chinese greens and oolong ... mostly.

I began to have a lot of these types of problems. It was recommended that I stop drinking tea and stop eating chocolate and spicey food ... NOT. Those were my 3 fave things.

However it was about this time that I made the near complete switch to Japanese greens (because I fell in love with them). I also picked up a gallon of Aloe Extract from a natural food store. Figured, what did I have to lose? I believe these two changes healed my condition. It was virtually non existant for 5-6 +/- years.

Fast forward to today ... I have very recently begun to have the problems again. I will pick up some Aloe Extract (forgot all about this component) and see what happens.

The big thing for me was to learn as much about it at the time ...

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Re: Tea and stomach trouble

Postby Maneki Neko » Mar 5th, '13, 21:54

Thanks for your responses :)

Every day since Friday it's gotten a little better. Haven't had any pains yet today.

The omeprazole is a single prescription, but I am thinking of asking for more. It works well for me. My dad has been taking omeprazole for more than a decade, and it works great for him too.

The acidic foods tip makes sense indeed, since it complements rather than suppresses the stomach's natural acidity. I'll search the organic store for some of the foods you mentioned, Teaisme :wink:

Unfortunately, I'm not very fond of roasted teas (at all!). Japanese greens and black masala teas are basically the only ones I enjoy. I have yet to try a pu-erh though...

Now, after a bowl of cereals and almond milk, I'm brewing my new sencha :mrgreen:

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Re: Tea and stomach trouble

Postby jayinhk » Mar 6th, '13, 08:36

Shu pu erh, fu zhuan and yogurt are great for my IBS. Green tea...not so much I would think.

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Re: Tea and stomach trouble

Postby victoria3 » Mar 6th, '13, 13:46

When the body is having an issue it's telling us to take a break from our habitual patterns. Too much of a good thing can backfire. I've experienced a metallic taste in my teeth and then upper palate sores a few times and I suspect it was from drinking too much camellia sinensis tea. When I switched over to mate or other herbal varieties the problem resolved itself. Now I try and remind myself to take a green tea break (or whatever is habitual) every so often.

In Japan, GERD seems to be an issue. "A study of Japanese patients showed elevated acid reflux symptoms .... green tea consumption was associated with GERD" http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3179841/

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Re: Tea and stomach trouble

Postby teaisme » Mar 6th, '13, 14:09

victoria3 wrote:I've experienced a metallic taste in my teeth and then upper palate sores a few times and I suspect it was from drinking too much camellia sinensis tea.


maybe symptoms of drinking dirty tea? Or tea processed on equipment that is not clean and now leeching metals. I've had similar reactions from drinking shady teas in the past.

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Re: Tea and stomach trouble

Postby victoria3 » Mar 6th, '13, 14:28

teaisme wrote:maybe symptoms of drinking dirty tea? Or tea processed on equipment that is not clean and now leeching metals. I've had similar reactions from drinking shady teas in the past.


I tend to source my teas either organic or from single farms. My filtered water is heated in glass. I also had the same metallic reaction when making Kombucha which uses organic camellia sinensis tea and distilled water. I think the issue was that I was just drinking too much. I've read that consuming lots of tea tends to pull minerals (zinc, calcium, iron...) out of the system.

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Re: Tea and stomach trouble

Postby teaisme » Mar 6th, '13, 14:37

you drink mostly japanese greens?

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Re: Tea and stomach trouble

Postby victoria3 » Mar 6th, '13, 16:07

teaisme wrote:you drink mostly japanese greens?

Yes, almost exclusively for over a year. I got into Japanese via brewing Kombucha with Chinese greens. Blogging about the health benefits of green tea eventually migrated my focus over to Japan.

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Re: Tea and stomach trouble

Postby Maneki Neko » Mar 6th, '13, 21:29

victoria3 wrote:In Japan, GERD seems to be an issue. "A study of Japanese patients showed elevated acid reflux symptoms .... green tea consumption was associated with GERD" http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3179841/

But the Japanese have been drinking lots of green tea for ages... while GERD has just recently seen an increase. I don't think tea causes it but it might indeed aggravate it.

I make green tea once every day, totalling a few sencha cups from one or two steeps. My stomach pains have gone for now, but I'll make sure to eat something before the tea from now on :wink:

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Re: Tea and stomach trouble

Postby victoria3 » Mar 7th, '13, 00:14

Maneki Neko wrote:But the Japanese have been drinking lots of green tea for ages... while GERD has just recently seen an increase. I don't think tea causes it but it might indeed aggravate it.
I make green tea once every day, totalling a few sencha cups from one or two steeps. My stomach pains have gone for now, but I'll make sure to eat something before the tea from now on :wink:


Well,it appears excess is not your issue :? You seem to have inherited this condition since your dad has it also. Have you considered trying an elimination diet? To see if dairy, gluten, fried foods etc. aggravate the situation? Here is an article by Dr. Mark Hyman, with some reasonable advice and important tests you can have done; http://drhyman.com/blog/2010/07/17/3-si ... id-reflux/

Regarding the Japanese: This interesting book discusses the History of Food and address changes in Japan's eating habits since the Meiji period and in particular contemporary society. http://www.cambridge.org/us/books/kiple/japan.htm

"A change of eating habits, which occurred in accordance with social improvements, can be seen in government encouragement of meat eating and milk drinking so as to make the physique of Japanese people comparable to that of Western people....The modernization of Japanese food culture after the Meiji Restoration was interrupted by the rise of militarism and World War II." ".....annual per capita rice consumption...has since declined....since the late 1980s. The consumption of sweet potatoes and barley as rice substitutes has declined drastically, and only a few people still eat them regularly. Such traditional carbohydrate foods have been largely supplanted by bread, which school-lunch programs made popular. These programs served bread made from American flour to schoolchildren. The flour had been received as food aid during the postwar food shortage."

"Today, about 30 percent of the adult population eats bread for breakfast....... there has been a rapid increase in the consumption of previously rare foods, such as meat, eggs, dairy products, and fats....."

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Re: Tea and stomach trouble

Postby Maneki Neko » Mar 7th, '13, 13:19

victoria3 wrote:
Maneki Neko wrote:But the Japanese have been drinking lots of green tea for ages... while GERD has just recently seen an increase. I don't think tea causes it but it might indeed aggravate it.
I make green tea once every day, totalling a few sencha cups from one or two steeps. My stomach pains have gone for now, but I'll make sure to eat something before the tea from now on :wink:


Well,it appears excess is not your issue :? You seem to have inherited this condition since your dad has it also. Have you considered trying an elimination diet? To see if dairy, gluten, fried foods etc. aggravate the situation?

My dad's GERD is caused by a hiatus hernia, which I don't have. I guess my problems might originate in stress and/or eating spicy foods. My diet has changed since I live with my husband. He is Pakistani so a bit of spice is included in the dinner every day. I like that too :mrgreen:

I haven't tried an elimination diet as such, but since diagnosis I have cut down the spices, and am eating less and more slowly at night, which seems to help. As a vegetarian I generally stay away from most fried and fast foods. I've also almost eliminated milk products. But some of the symptoms, like bloating and gas, seem to stay :roll: Unless and until I get another gastroscopy, I won't know if the gastritis has subsided, stayed the same or gotten worse...

I guess I panicked a bit with those stomach pains since they're pretty much gone...

A change of eating habits, which occurred in accordance with social improvements, can be seen in government encouragement of meat eating and milk drinking so as to make the physique of Japanese people comparable to that of Western people....

Hehehe, they got it all wrong! Doesn't work that way! :lol:
But actually it's not funny...they get all the diet-related diseases now :?

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Re: Tea and stomach trouble

Postby victoria3 » Mar 7th, '13, 15:53

victoria3 wrote:
"A change of eating habits, which occurred in accordance with social improvements, can be seen in government encouragement of meat eating and milk drinking so as to make the physique of Japanese people comparable to that of Western people"...."Today, about 30 percent of the adult population eats bread for breakfast....... there has been a rapid increase in the consumption of previously rare foods, such as meat, eggs, dairy products, and fats....."


Maneki Neko wrote:But actually it's not funny...they get all the diet-related diseases now :?


I just happened to stumble onto that book online and what it said blew me away. It was serendipitous for sure. I hope you read the Mark Hyman article and are able to do some of the tests too.

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