The Monday Boost: Caffeine Amounts in Tea
On a Monday morning, particularly after a beautiful summer weekend like we had here in Seattle, a pick-me-up is usually in order. A cup of tea is a healthy way to get that needed boost. But how much are you actually getting?
All “true” tea comes from the Camellia sinensis plant and contains caffeine. The names White, Green, Black, and Oolong signify how the tea was processed. Twig tea (also called Kukicha) is made from the twigs, rather than the leaves, of the Camellia sinensis plant and contains very little caffeine. I wish we could tell you exactly how much caffeine is in a cup of tea, but it is simply not possible to be that precise! There are just too many variables – what field was the tea grown in, what time of year, how long had it been growing, how much rain was there, how long did you steep the tea, how hot was the water, etc. We can give a good estimate, though, as long as you keep those variables in mind:
Caffeine content per cup:
Coffee – 200 to 300 mg
Black tea – 60 to 80 mg
Oolong tea – 50 to 60 mg
Green tea – 35 to 50 mg
Genmaicha (Green tea with toasted brown rice) – 17 to 18 mg
Moroccan Mint Green (Green tea and herbs) – 17 to 18 mg
White tea – 30 to 50 mg
Decaf coffee – 2 to 6 mg
Decaf tea – 2 to 4 mg
Loose leaf Twig tea (from the stems of the plant) – 2 to 3 mg. The teabag version of Choice Organic Teas Twig tea also contains leaf so it contains more caffeine – 34 mg in our last test.
All true tea has caffeine, so the industry standard is that they do not require a caffeine statement on the package. You’ve probably noticed that coffee and chocolate also don’t state that they contain caffeine! Herbal teas, also known as tisanes, do not contain any Camilia sinensis. Most Choice Organic Teas tisanes are labeled as “caffeine-free”, the exception being our Yerba Mate, which is an herbal tea from South America that naturally contains caffeine just like tea or coffee. Our organic Yerba Mate is pure and untoasted for a mellow, woody cup. It’s one of my favorite selections for those days when I feel like I need an extra bit of energy.
Keep this list in mind when you’re looking to energize, and all your Mondays will be happy ones.