Relmaster said

Caffeine ?!

What would be a good way to build a caffeine tolerance? Tea suggestions? I have an anxiety disorder and anything over 3 cups of green tea, makes me feel edgy! The only remedy I have found is to brew less actual loose tea “leaf”, and re-steep the same leaf 2-3 times. I also take L-theanine supplements to reduce caffeine’s edgy effects. Any suggestions would be helpful??

34 Replies

Caffeine used to bother me a lot more than it does now.

Anyway here’s a few suggestions for you.

- Find something you like to mix into your tea that has no caffeine. I like spearmint and lemon verbena with green tea, to name a few

- Pour out the first infusion of your tea and resteep it

- Mix decaf tea in with your regular tea

- Roasted kukicha is supposed to be low in caffeine

- Genmaicha is mixed with toasted brown rice and is therefore lower in caffeine

Relmaster said

Thank you so much for your reply ;-) I am going to try alot of your suggestions and I will let you know how they work out ! When caffeine used to bother you, …did you drink caffeine/tea every day to build up a tolerance to it? I am trying to find a good company to buy green tea or “jasmine dragon pearls” any suggestions??

Yes I was drinking caffeine every day and I definitely have built up more of a tolerance to it over time. Often it still bothers me if I drink too much in one day so I have to keep an eye on it. I drink herbal teas sometimes too.

As for tea companies, you can check the reviews on Steepster but Teavivre is a good one for Chinese green tea and Jasmine Pearls. YOu could also try Mandala tea or Rishi Tea.

For Japanese green tea, including genmaicha and kukicha, I recommend Den’s Tea, their stuff is great!

Relmaster said

Thank you very much, your suggestions and tips have been incredibly insightful to me. Their are SOOOO many teas/companies out there, you never know where to start ;) The jasmine dragon pearls and dragonwell have been some of my favorites so far! I would like to start writing “tea-reviews” on the teas that I drink daily.. Any suggestions?? I also have the iphone app names “Tea” , have you ever used it?

I don’t have an i-phone so no apps for me. :)

As for writing tea reviews, well just write about what your personal experience is with the tea, how does it look, smell, taste what method did you use to prepare it? How does it make you feel while or after you’re drinking it? If you are new to tea it’s ok to mention that too, lots of different people here. I read a lot of other people’s reviews, that also helps…

Relmaster said

Thank you again for your insight ;) I have been jotting down my “tasting notes” on an Iphone app called “Tea” which has tasting notes after the timer is done for each infusion. This app also recognizes that you are brewing another cup of the same tea so you can make tasting notes for each successive infusions! It also calculates how much tea you have left (in Oz,Lb etc), so you never run out of your favorite teas ;-) I wish “steepster” would come out with a Mobile/Iphone app?? That would be helpful to alot of people ;-)

Fujian white teas tend to be very low in caffeine, sometimes lower than decaffeinated teas.

Relmaster said

What company carries Fujian white tea? I have never heard of that before (new to tea ;)

They’re all over the place. Most white come from that area, so you can find a lot. Upton Tea, Red Blossom Tea, Adagio… almost every place you go. Just look in the description of the tea to see if it tells where it’s from and it’ll usually say.

Relmaster said

Thank you very much..I will check those companies out ;-)

VegTea said

I don’t know too much about theanine, but I would be concerned that it might have stimulant effects that might also be making your anxiety worse. I would be cautious with this supplement, as it does not look like it has been well studied.

How about some decaffeinated green tea? What about rooibos or other herbal teas? Obviously avoid yerba mate and guayusa, as those have more caffeine than true tea.

Relmaster said

L-theanine is a natural amino acid derived from Green Tea. It is the relaxing/focusing component that balances caffeine naturally. What companies have some good decaf-green teas? Do they taste the same as their caffeine counterparts?

VegTea said

I haven’t had any fancy decaf green tea, but I have gotten Salada brand decaf green tea from the grocery store, and I couldn’t tell the difference between that and the regular. I would imagine high quality decaf green teas would only be better.

Mark B select said

I’m a recovering heavy coffee drinker. My withdrawals from the caffeine were pretty significant: classic headaches, mood swings, flu-like symptoms, aches pains, etc. As such, I’ve taken great care reintroducing caffeine into my diet.

Rather than taking any supplements to balance its effects, I’ve focused on teas that have a naturally occurring balance of theanine and caffeine. Assuming the quality of the tea is good and the balance is there, I find this results in an alert but relaxed effect, as opposed to the jittery nervousness that I tend to get from coffee or black teas. In addition there’s a smooth experience, rather than the ramp up and crash. As such I can go with or without tea, and other than the occasional mild caffeine headache, I don’t experience much in the way of withdrawal.

In my research I’ve heard that young green teas tend to have more theanine, in particular Gyokuro, white teas & quality Longjing. Shade growing seems to increase theanine as well. Though I like an oolong or dark tea every now and then, I tend to stick to profiles that I expect will yield this theanine/caffeine balance I’ve come to enjoy. I’ve read that even the Costco Sencha/Matcha bags are pretty good in this respect. As far as low cost bagged tea goes, I actually don’t mind this one too much. They often have it at my work, and I usually keep a small stash in my bag when I’m stuck without any other tea resources.

I’m fairly new here, but I try to include notes on caffeine effects with the teas I review. You can also search Steepster & check types of tea that your interested in. See where the higher rated teas come from. That can help you dial in to certain sellers. Once you hone in on specific retailers, many of them offer sample packages. For instance Verdant has, amongst others, a green tea sampler. I found it to be an excellent way to familiarize myself with their Laoshan greens.

Good luck!

Relmaster said

Thank you! I have some Gyokuro (Gyokuro Genmaicha ) and will be purchasing some more teas very soon. How much Theanine is in the Gyokuro Variety?

Mark B select said

I don’t know about specific Theanine content, per se. Check out this forum thread with an exhaustive list of theanine links posted by user SimpliciTEA.

Mark B select said

Of course I could include the link….

Drink lots of water. That’s how I did it :)
(one cup water to one cup caffeine… took a long time but it worked and lessens/dilutes the edge while drinking to)

Relmaster said

WOW..that is a really good idea!! Thank you very much …I’m definitely going to try that!! ;-)

Scott B said

My doctor recommended 2 cups of water for every cup of tea, but I usually don’t manage that. She seems okay with me getting 1.5 or so instead.

Yeah my doc recommends 1 cup water to 1 cup caffeine but that is additional to the regular water intake of 2L per day so that works out to about the same as the 2-1 ratio. But then I never get that far either! lol
I hope that method works for you as well Relmaster! :)

Relmaster said

Thank you “indigobloom” and “Scott B” I have been drinking 1 cup of the same amount of water (ie. 16 Oz Tea—16 Oz Water) for each cup of tea I am making. It seems to work, because I feel less jittery and as a side benefit my skin looks glowingly healthy ;)

awesome!! that’s great news :)

BiggieG said

I thought Rumpus was correct – white tea has little caffeine, but now I am not so sure…

On the other hand I think the theanine is supposed to buffer the caffeine jitters, hence the ’ relaxed alertness’ that tea drinkers and buddhist monks are supposed to have. Or something.

Anecdotally, I cut coffee way down and switched to white tea and feel much more level on it and had no withdrawal symptoms from caffeine. Maybe cos I wasn’t withdrawing as much as I thought?

From my own experience, white tea can have the most caffeine and it can be harsh with jitters and headaches. I don’t really drink black but I enjoy all other types and white tea is the only type that effects me this way. It’s not all white teas. Some of them give me a mellow buzz. Others make me feel like I just had ten cups of coffee. Cold brewing seems to tone down the caffeine tremendously however. Teas that make me jittery hot brewed only give a buzz cold brewed.

Again, this is purely personal experience.

I just read the linked article. Thanks. Turns out Rumpus is correct. The white teas that make me jittery must be from different varietals than Fujian. I wonder what varietal 52 Teas uses. His packs a caffeine punch!

Relmaster said

I read the article you mentioned, and it would seem that certain white teas are higher in caffeine content than I thought! I have been drinking smaller amounts of tea, and making more Infusions with the same batch of tea. I also have been drinking an equal amount of water with each cup (16 Oz Tea—16 Oz water)!! Are “silver needle” “silver yin zhen pearls” white teas a high caffeine variety? Are they good for multiple infusions? I was looking for a good company for “jasmine white tea”..any suggestions?? Thank You ;-)

Relmaster, silver needle describes only the part of the plant plucked (young buds) and doesn’t tell you where the tea came from and what varietal it is. So it’s hard to say whether it’s high caffeine. But most white teas are good for at least two infusions from my experience.

As for white jasmine, try doing a search on Steepster and check to see if is a fujian white.

Relmaster said

Do pu-erh teas have more or less caffeine than oolongs. And green teas? Whenever I steep pu-erhs for multiple infusions, i get a sort of drunk like feeling after 4-5 infusions ( i am using a small amount of tea 1tsp per 8oz so it cant be caffeine? Can it??) i have heard of something called cha-qi… Is that the same as caffeine?

Mark B select said

Here is an interesting article at regarding caffeine and tea. Check the comments section. Waiting to see him do a follow up article.

Rasseru said

Just thought id add to this one as some of us suffer – so add these to your diet every day might help:

‘There is only one surefire way to shorten caffeine’s half-life in your body, and it’s to up the production of the CYP1A2 enzyme. A study published in the Oxford Journal of Carcinogenesis found that a diet rich in cruciferous vegetables (broccoli, cauliflower, brussel sprouts, etc.) increased production of CYP1A2. Conversely, a diet heavy in apiaceous vegetables (carrots, celery, dill, etc.) reduced CYP1A2. Unfortunately, for someone hoping to immediately treat coffee jitters by chowing down on some cauliflower, digestion doesn’t work that way. “Even if broccoli can affect enzyme production, you still have to go through the process of it breaking down and absorbing the food,” says Webb. “That could take at least eight hours.”

So if you’re prone to overcaffeination, eat some broccoli now to prevent tweaking later’

AllanK said

You can tell how old this thread is by all the myths about caffeine, like white tea being lower. Type of tea has little effect on caffeine. More important is the tea primarily buds? It will be high in caffeine. Large leaves have less caffeine than small leaves. Stems have even less. And tea flowers have the least caffeine of the tea plant.

Rasseru said

haha yes,

its the most appropriate thread for the broccoli revelation to be put in though I think :)

Mark B select said

Please, it’s important to consider the preparation method of your cruciferous vegetables, your PH level and your ability to process cow dung when taking this approach.

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