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pauladrian said

Nitrosamine in the film on leftover oxidized tea?

Has anyone heard of this?
Whats the deal?

18 Replies
pauladrian said

I guess what i am most concerned about is the implications of nitrosamine being a carcinogen.

I drink a TON of harney earl grey supreme…

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SimplyJenW said

Source of information?

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pauladrian said
SimplyJenW said

Thanks. Do you really leave your tea out overnight (non-refrigerated) and drink it the next day? All the time? I always do fresh, so I am not worried. I kind of see what they are talking about, and I have a background in chemistry. BUT, and that is a big but, you get those same precursors for nitrosamines eating processed meats, drinking beer, and from smoking from what I have read, and who knows where else. That does not mean the nitrosamines are in there…it just means you need to handle the product properly with refrigeration, be mindful of expiration dates, and generally, if it smells off, don’t consume it. I imagine it is significantly lower in tea, and the risk is pretty low. Does old tea even appeal when it is so inexpensive to make new? If you do drink old tea, just make less and more often so you don’t have to. Then you won’t have to worry about it. I would be more worried about bacteria growth than nitrosamine.

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pauladrian said

Well it seems that the film can develop even after just a few hours… It does not take overnight for the oxidization to happen?

Since i read this i chuck any tea even after a couple of hours…

But i was just wondering about this as i have never heard it before.

Thanks alot for your reply. :)

SimplyJenW said

I don’t see any primary sources for your information, though. They are all past a reliable secondary source or even further down the chain for all we know.

Do you really get a white film on your tea after two hours? (It seems to be the color they are mentioning in the secondary sources.) I know there is an oily film from just steaping, but there are oils in all plant life. It makes sense that hot water would extract some of the plant oils. And it might take a bit for them to come to the surface. I also work in the natural cosmetic industry and camellia oil is a very high grade cosmetic oil. It comes from tea plant leaves that are processed differently. I can’t imagine that processing leaves for tea extracts all oil. Most moisture, yes, but not oil.

SimplyJenW said

Just to add food for thought…one of the main compounds that is a precursor to nitrosamine is shortened to TEA (triethanolamine). This is part of the reason why it is very important to know the primary source. It is easily taken out of context and tea and nitrosamines are forever linked in an incorrect association.

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pauladrian said

Great info,

Its hard to say if it is a “white” film or even what they mean by white…

I could not find primary sources, and i have certainly tried,
but in starting this thread i had hoped to determine
if there were others who had heard about this.

I have even emailed Harney & Son’s but have yet to recieve a reply…

Thanks again for your replies!

:)

SimplyJenW said

I am thinking that there are many things that will kill us long before tea!

I will comb the scientific literature today.

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pauladrian said

I absolutely agree with you,

However i still want to know these things…

hehe

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Fairyfli said

What an interesting topic…. many of time I have made tea and then refrigerated it to make it ice tea without having to put ice in it…. hmmm may want to do that not as much and start using ice more…. I have to say though that I never did notice a white film at all on the tea. would love to hear what others think of this too!

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Nicole said

I make all of my iced teas by brewing and putting straight in the fridge – no ice to water it down. I have never noticed a film of any kind. I also brew a whole pitcher at a time and generally don’t drink it all for a few days – also have never noticed anything bad, taste or film.

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pauladrian said

Thanks Nicole,

Thats interesting, i wonder if putting it in the fridge promptly means that the film or oxidation is mitigated…

However, i was most concerned with simply tea left for a few hours at room temperature…

Thanks.

I would love for Michael Harney to chime in on this… :)

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SimplyJenW said

Good luck. I could not find anything, either. Everything I read points the opposite. I would tend to go with that rather than a few random people on the internet.

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