Drinking Chai? 6 Health Reasons To Limit The Daily Consumption

In India, most people start their mornings with one drink and one drink only - chai, a milk-based tea drink that is served up in hot cups and paired with breakfast or snacks. Black tea leaves are soaked in boiling water, filtered, and combined with heated milk together with sugar to create chai or milk tea. In fact, many homes and tea stalls also add spices like ginger, cardamom, cinnamon, etc to make that cup of chai more enjoyable. And while this means that chai is almost considered to be the national drink of India, there is a downside.

Many scientific studies suggest that drinking milk tea or chai–first thing in the morning or at any time, in moderation or too much–can lead to some health issues too. This is because despite being warm and packed with flavours, chai or milk tea is not the healthiest of beverages. 

Here are 6 reasons why you should limit the daily consumption of milk tea daily:

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1. Caffeine Content: 

Because milk tea contains caffeine, regular consumption, as also mentioned in the National Institute of Health (NIH) , especially in large quantities, may have negative effects. While many people can safely consume up to a modest amount of caffeine, overindulging can cause problems like jitteriness, elevated heart rate, and disturbed sleep. Furthermore, when caffeine consumption is stopped, withdrawal symptoms may occur. It's critical to consider both general health and individual caffeine sensitivity. Choosing herbal or decaffeinated teas on occasion might offer a tasty substitute without the possible negative effects of consuming large amounts of caffeine on a regular basis.

2. High Calorie Intake: 

The  National Nutritional Council says that because milk tea has a lot of calories, it could be dangerous to drink it every day. The use of milk, which is frequently sweetened or condensed, increases caloric intake and increases the risk of weight gain if it is not maintained with a balanced diet and regular exercise. Consuming too many calories can have an adverse effect on one's general health and increase the risk of diseases like obesity and related disorders. Maintaining a well-rounded and healthy lifestyle requires moderation and awareness of one's total caloric consumption. Moderate consumption of milk tea and the use of lower-calorie or unsweetened alternatives can help lower these worries.

3. Digestive Issue: 

Because milk tea contains tannin and caffeine, consuming it on a daily basis may cause digestive problems. Caffeine overindulgence can increase the stomach's production of acid, which may result in acidity and indigestion. According to the National Nutritional Council, tea contains tannins, which can irritate the digestive system and hinder the absorption of iron. Furthermore, extra sugars that have been sweetened may cause weight gain and dental issues. While daily use in moderation is generally acceptable, over consumption can cause digestive tract disruption. To support improved digestive health, it's advised to balance milk tea with a varied diet and take herbal or caffeine-free alternatives into consideration.

4. Insomnia: 

Because milk tea contains caffeine, drinking it frequently, especially in the evening, may cause insomnia. A popular foundation for milk tea is black tea as also mentioned in a study by the US National Institutes of Health (NIH), which has caffeine, a stimulant that might interfere with sleep. Frequent consumption might cause trouble falling asleep, restless evenings, and disrupted sleep cycles, especially right before bed. The effects of caffeine vary from person to person, as do sensitivity levels. Limiting or abstaining from milk tea, especially those with high caffeine content, is advised to support improved sleep cycle. For better health one can shift to herbal and non caffeinated tea. 

5. Dehydration: 

Daily consumption of milk tea might cause dehydration because of its diuretic effects. Tea's caffeine promotes increased urine production and may cause fluid loss because it functions as a moderate diuretic. Frequent consumption without enough hydration replenishment can lead to dehydration as per the National Nutritional Council, which can result in symptoms including weariness, headaches, and dizziness. Furthermore, certain types of milk tea have additional sugars, which can make dehydration worse if ingested in excess. To counteract the potential drying effects of daily milk tea use, it's critical to keep a varied and balanced diet, be conscious of fluid intake, and choose hydrating beverages.

6. Blood Pressure : 

Drinking milk tea every day might not be the best idea for people who are worried about their blood pressure. Tea's caffeine concentration has the potential to momentarily raise blood pressure as per the National Nutritional Council. Traditional milk tea also frequently has added sugars, which raises calorie consumption and may lead to weight gain. This has an additional negative effect on blood pressure. Drinking too many caffeinated beverages can cause dehydration, which can interfere with the regulation of blood pressure. To maintain a balanced and healthy lifestyle, moderation is essential. Those who have hypertension or are sensitive to caffeine should think about other possibilities or choose teas with reduced caffeine content. For tailored advice, always speak with a healthcare professional.