Caffeine is something that we are all very much aware of, on account of the simple fact that we consume it in copious amounts on a daily basis. Coffee, tea, coke, drinks of other types, you name it, its got it. But wait a minute: was that tea tucked in between coffee and coke?
Does it really contain caffeine? And if so, how much caffeine is in sweet tea, really? With all those other sources of caffeine that we so readily consume and have basically integrated in our daily lives, should we be really worried about there being caffeine in sweet tea?
Well, that’s apparently a question for us to answer, among many others, so, without any further ado, lets get into it: is there caffeine in sweet tea? And if so, how much caffeine is in sweet tea? Healthy enough to be consumed daily or a risk switching from coffee? Lets see what the annals of nutrition and caffeine-addiction have to say about this.
But before we can get into answering this question, we need to answer a question we thought was reserved for nutritionists and people who are baristas or work at Starbucks: what is caffeine? And so, here goes.
What is Caffeine, Actually?
Described as a natural stimulant derived from tea, coffee (plant extracts) and cacao plants, caffeine is something that powers up the day of around 80 percent of people worldwide, not in the form of coffee, but tea, ginseng and many other compounds and products related to caffeine. Up to 90 per cent of all American people start their day with some kind of a caffeine hit, and for the most part, it’s either home-brewed coffee or a cup of good old joe from your local Starbucks or the café downstairs,
which makes coffee the number one consumed beverage in the states. But since this is all about tea, we ought to just throw it out there that tea is fast catching up with Americans, and tea is now more popular, arguably more than when it got dumped in the Boston Harbour, a whole lot of it.
So, caffeine, with its status as a stimulant, is something that stimulates and works up the central nervous system and the brain to make sure that you don’t fall asleep. Keeps you awake, doesn’t let you get tired, that sort of thing. It is useful enough to have been in use for a long time now: dating back to 2737 BC, when people of the times brewed tea. Shows you how old and medieval this stuff really can get.
To conclude, caffeine, as a central nervous system stimulant, works by stimulating and essentially waking up the central nervous system and the brain.
Caffeine: What Does it Do To The Body?
As stated beforehand, caffeine is a stimulant, which means that it stimulates and jolts awake the central nervous system. More specifically, it activates both the central nervous system (CNS) and the brain, by opening up the receptors. The person consuming caffeine is more active, more receptive and is more likely to function properly than a person with no caffeine intake (or simply if the person hasn’t wakened up properly).
However, it is imperative to note here that like everything else we discuss here, moderation is the name of the game. According to research, the safe daily intake of caffeine for an adult is around 400mg, which means that when you go beyond that, you will experience some issues.
Mostly, again, they are related to the central nervous system and have much to do with the fact that the system goes into overdrive when you consume too much stimulant; for instance, one of the most common symptoms of a caffeine overdose are insomnia, nervousness, increased heart rate and restlessness. As you can see, these are all effects related to the central nervous system, and the more you consume a stimulant,
The more stimulated your mind and nervous system will be, to the point when you are supposed to relax, you might be out breaking your back. Furthermore, if you are just starting out with caffeine, be fairly warned. Regardless of how much caffeine is in sweet tea or coffee or how much are you supposed to consume, caffeine can also “stimulate the urge to defecate”. What is meant by this here, as is common with people making fun of coffee, that as you can as you’ve had your cup, you might feel the urge to go to the bathroom for your number twos.
This is not something that’s wrong with coffee, it has to do with the fact that caffeine stimulates movement and contractions in your intestinal muscles and colon, getting you the urge to, you know. Empty your bowels. Just a PSA out there for anyone just getting into caffeine.
Southern Sweet Tea: The Caffeine, The Benefits
Considering that tea really became a mainstay for the southerners during the early years of the States, southern sweet tea is something that many people are familiar with and consume almost daily, leading to things like iced tea and sweet tea. Which might lead you to think that Southern sweet tea might be something different than regular tea, but really it isn’t. Many culinary and specialty foodstuff websites state that the Southern sweet tea is just like regular tea but with lemon added, so there’s just this difference.
As for the caffeine content in Southern sweet tea, it’s the same as regular sweet tea, considering that Southern sweet tea is regular sweet tea but with lemon added to it. And since lemon does not have caffeine content on its own, this would make Southern sweet tea have the same concentration and amount of caffeine as regular tea, with the additional benefit being that you get the zing and the nutritional advantage of lemon. You know, Vitamin C and all that.
How Much Caffeine Will a Glass of Tea Run You?
The first thing to keep in mind here is that tea has less caffeine than coffee. Coffee, on average, has the highest caffeine concentration of any natural substance, and this is further enhanced by manufacturers as they try to find the blend with the most kick. With that being said, an average glass, which contains about 240ml of the beverage, will have 47mg, but, as different brews and brewing methods go, can contain as much as 90mg.
Bear in mind that this is the concentration for black tea, which is the most popular form of tea prepared and consumed. For green tea, this figure will drop down, as green tea is something that soothes and relaxes the nerves rather than bombard them with energy. For the same amount of green tea, the entire range of caffeine that you can get is between 20 to 45mg, which makes it lesser than its black counterpart.
And this is still not the least amount of caffeine a glass of tea will run you; there is still white tea, which has the lowest concentration of caffeine in any tea; for the same amount of serving, you get anywhere between 6 to 55mg of caffeine, making it the drink with the least amount of caffeine in it.
Who Takes The Caffeine Cake: Coffee or Tea?
We’ve already been through this: coffee has the highest concentration of caffeine of any natural substance, and as such, manufacturers can mix in other types and qualities of coffee beans for the maximum potency effect. With that being said, lets compare some statistics. We already know that a glass or nearly 250ml of black tea contains around 50mg of caffeine; coffee gets more than that. For the same amount of coffee (around 250ml), you get almost double the caffeine (at 100mg).
As you can see, coffee takes the cake for having the most concentration of caffeine in it, whereas tea (alongside its green and white tea brethren) clock in as having the lowest amount of caffeine in them. And that is just your regular, run-of-the-mill coffee; there are several other blends and concentrations that can up the dose of caffeine and the potency by a whole lot. So much so, that even half a cup or 150ml of that stuff can make you stay up for two nights in a row. But seeing as caffeine has different effects on everybody, that claim is still up for debate.
Caffeine in Sweet Tea: Good for You?
Caffeine in tea; whether its black, green or white, and caffeine in coffee is no different at all. Its just the difference in the concentration of caffeine in each drink; and so, you cant really compare or differentiate the caffeine in either tea or coffee as being good or bad; since caffeine is the same in both tea and coffee. So instead, another way of looking at it is this: which mode of delivery of caffeine is more healthy and good for you.
And this is something that is down to preference; you’ll hear many people say that coffee gets addictive to the point you hear something like ‘don’t talk to me unless I’ve had my morning coffee’, or people in states where tea is frequently consumed, drink so much that some people have had their teeth stained due to it. So there’s no comparison in the mode of delivery either; go with coffee if you like coffee, or go with tea of you like tea.
Also Read: What is The Healthiest Soda – Sparkling Water
But, if you are someone who tends to drink a lot of whatever it is that you drink, try switching to tea (if you haven’t done it already). Considering that an excess of caffeine is bad, and since it is the body’s natural tendency to build up an immunity around something that is consumed frequently, you’ll end up consuming way more caffeine than its 400-mg limit. With tea, since the dosage and concentration are much less, you will eventually consume less.
What is The Healthiest Caffeinated Tea?
Tea is mainly consumed in three different versions; black, green and white (in order of their consumption). Black tea is the most consumed type of tea; that’s the same tea that the Brits enjoyed, spread all across their colonies and former colonies, and is the same tea that go dumped in the Boston Harbour. At the second place of consumption comes in green tea; this is much more healthier than black tea and is consumed alongside meals and is more prevalent in the Asian Far East.
The last is white tea; featuring minimally processed leaves of the species Camellia sinensis, this is the rarest and the least consumed of all teas. As for the healthiest with respect to caffeine, we’d suggest you to go with green tea, owing to its ready availability, ease of preparation, overall taste and concentration of caffeine. It is also very healthy, and unlike black tea or coffee, green tea has less tendency to get the user addicted to it.
What’s more, green tea has been used for weight loss since long, and has some track record to back it up. So, when it comes to hot beverages to be consumed daily, the healthiest of the lot would be green tea, preferably taken without sugar.
Caffeine: The Dark Side
The side effects or the negative points of caffeine aren’t that much dangerous or inherent; all of them allude to the overconsumption of said substance. With that being said, overconsumption of caffeine is a dangerous thing; symptoms and effects like insomnia, restlessness and an increase in the heart rate are pretty common in people who cross their 400mg limit, but the important thing to keep in mind is that there’s only so much stimulation that you can give the human mind. You can keep it running on the high octane of breakfast drinks, but eventually it will conk out. Rest is imperative and caffeine is the antitheses to it; drink it too much and the negative effects will affect your brain and your central nervous system in a rather unpleasant manner.
Caffeine-Free Sweet Tea, And Milo’s Sweet Tea
Caffeine-free sweet tea is something that is readily available in the form of Milo’s Decaf Sweet Tea, which is a healthier alternative to sweet tea with caffeine. Considering that some people might want a cool, refreshing glass of sweet, iced tea during supper and they would not like to stay up all night counting sheep, caffeine-free sweet tea would be a good option going about it, and Milo’s Decaf Sweet Tea is a good option for that drink that doesn’t keep you awake like coke or cold coffee.
List of Commonly Asked Questions and Answers on a Website About Topics “Caffeine in Sweet Tea”
Q1. How Much Caffeine is in Iced Tea Vs Coffee?
Iced tea is still tea, and since ice does not have any caffeine in it, you’re left with the same answer: iced tea and tea in general has less caffeine as compared to coffee. In certain instances, coffee contains almost double the amount of caffeine in the same serving or tea; iced, cold or hot.
Q2. Which Has More Caffeine: Hot or Iced Tea
The percentage or concentration of caffeine does not change with the state or temperature at which tea is: which means, that both iced and piping hot tea will have the same caffeine content in it.
Q3. Which Drink Has The Most Caffeine
The honours go to DynaPep micro caffeine shot; this here is a drink that isn’t even in complete packaging owing to its potency and shock of energy; this time-released caffeine shock is potent enough that a .14 oz serving of it can give you the equivalent of around 720mg per fluid ounce of caffeine in one single go.
Talk about jumpstarting your body, this drink runs an entire pack of Tesla batteries through you. It is of course, dangerous, but coupled with a single night and three assignments to complete, and suddenly a single pack of DynaPep looks insufficient. Be careful around that stuff.