Milk tea, or chai as we lovingly call it, is practically a national obsession in India. Whether it’s the crack of dawn or a late-night pick-me-up, chai is always there to soothe our souls. But amidst all that comforting warmth, many of us battle an unexpected foe: acidity. Turns out, the way we brew our chai can make all the difference between bliss and burn. So, before you swear off your favourite drink, read on to learn how to keep enjoying your cuppa without the acidity blues, straight from dieticians and nutritionists.

Also Read: Tea: The Drink That Changed History – Here’s Why It’s More Than Just A Beverage

Why Does Milk Tea Cause Acidity?

The acidity from milk tea isn’t just a myth-it’s a real struggle for many chai enthusiasts. According to dietician Trishala, there are three main culprits:

1. Overboiling Milk and Tea Together

We’ve all done it-letting the tea simmer a bit too long to intensify the flavour. But here’s the catch: overboiling milk with tea can break down proteins and lactose, triggering acidity for some. Dietician Trishala suggests a simple fix: add milk after brewing your tea, once it’s cooled a bit. This preserves the milk’s goodness while keeping your tea smooth and soothing.

2. Letting Tea Sit Too Long

Time flies, but your tea shouldn’t. Leaving your freshly brewed chai to languish for too long can amp up its acidity. To savour the freshness and dodge the burn, sip your tea within 10 minutes of brewing. Your taste buds and stomach will thank you.

3. Reheating Your Cuppa

Think twice before popping yesterday’s tea in the microwave. According to Trishala, reheating tea, especially with milk, can alter its composition and spike acidity levels. For the best brew every time, prepare only what you’ll drink in one go.

How Much Tea Should You Drink Daily?

While a few cups of chai can be part of a healthy routine, moderation is key. Research from Harvard suggests sticking to 3-4 cups a day to reap the benefits without overdoing it. If you’re dealing with health concerns, it’s always wise to chat with your doctor first.

Spinach is an excellent alternative to fenugreek leaves.

Photo Credit: iStock

Foods to Skip With Your Chai

Now that you’re a chai aficionado in the making, here are some food pairings to steer clear of for optimal health by nutritionist and macrobiotic health coach Shilpa Arora

1. Leafy Greens

As much as we love our greens, pairing them with tea can hinder iron absorption due to tannins in tea. Save your spinach and broccoli for meals sans chai to get the most nutrients.

2. Cold Fruit Salads 

Chai warms you up from the inside out, so skip the chill of raw fruits right after. Enjoy your fruits post-chai to keep digestion smooth and acidity at bay.

3. Lemon

Lemon adds zing to tea, but its acidity can clash with your digestive system, potentially leading to discomfort. If you love lemon in your tea, consider enjoying it in moderation to avoid overdoing the acidity.

4. Turmeric

Turmeric’s health benefits are stellar, but paired with tea, it can create a storm in your stomach. The combo of curcumin in turmeric and tannins in tea might trigger gastric problems like acidity or constipation.

5. Yogurt

Cold foods like yogurt don’t mesh well with warm chai. Experts advise keeping hot and cold foods separate to prevent potential digestive distress.

Also Read: Tea Leaves Or Tea Bags: Which One’s A Healthier Option?

Remember, enjoying your chai shouldn’t come with a side of acidity. With these tips from experts, you can savour your tea moments while keeping your stomach happy. 

By Alex Benjamin

Alex Benjamin, historian, quizmaster, and author, passionately explores history's depths. Renowned for unearthing forgotten facts, he's a quiz expert captivating audiences worldwide.

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