Can Tea Cause Headaches and Other Side Effects?


Can Tea Cause Headaches

Sometimes when drinking something warm you may wonder ‘can tea cause headaches’. A cup of tea is often thought of as a wonderful remedy to just about anything that ails you.

Have a stomachache?

Feel a cold coming on?

Stressed out?

Most people often solve it with a cup of warm tea. It’s healthy and is linked to numerous health benefits. So, what could possibly go wrong?

Nothing. Unless you’re chugging more than the normal amount.

Drinking too much tea can cause some serious issues including headaches.

Can Tea Cause Headaches and Other Side Effects

Let us know some of the side effects of drinking tea and if can tea cause headaches:

Tea and Headaches

Tea contains caffeine. And caffeine can provide relief for a headache.

During a headache, your blood vessels tighten, swell, or g through other changes which cause an increase in blood flow around your brain. This blood flow increase causes pressure on the surrounding nerves which send pain messages to your brain and what’s bring the headache.

With its vasoconstrictive properties, caffeine can narrow down blood vessels to restrict blood flow and alleviate pain, providing headache relief.

However, as with anything, consuming too much tea means an increased caffeine intake and causes just the opposite.

When caffeine is consumed regularly, your body becomes dependent on its effect. So, as caffeine narrows your blood vessels, once you stopped drinking team, the blood vessels enlarge and expand which can trigger pain.

Tea Ingredients Trigger Migraine

Tea also has some specific ingredients that are linked to causing migraines. Teas with ingredients such as ginseng, ginkgo Biloba, and St. John’s wort has been shown to trigger or worsen migraines in small studies.

These herbs can interfere with the metabolism of some migraine medicines and make them less effective. In simpler terms, if you take an OTC medication to cure your headache and brewed yourself a warm-up of tea with one of those herbal ingredients thinking that it can help too, it could actually backfire.

Tea May Cause Histamine Reaction

Some tea herbs can also cause a histamine reaction in the body, which can result in a headache. A histamine reaction is a natural, inflammatory response from your immune system, triggered by an allergen. However, when chronically triggered or overly severe, a histamine reaction can cause headaches, migraines, and rashes.

To prevent this, you need to reduce the consumption of high-histamine foods, including herbs and teas with citrus flavors. Instead, you should consider drinking low-histamine teas like:

  • Rooibos tea
  • Peppermint tea
  • Chamomile tea
  • Hibiscus tea
  • Moringa tea
  • Nettle leaf tea
  • Dandelion root tea

Other Side Effects of Drinking Too Much Tea

Can Tea Cause Headaches

1. Increased Anxiety and Stress

Due to its caffeine content, overconsuming tea can contribute to feelings of restlessness, anxiety, and stress. Your tea habit can make you feel nervous or jittery which is a sign that you’ve had too much and may need to cut back to reduce these symptoms.

2. Poor Sleep

Since tea contains caffeine, too much consumption can disrupt your sleep cycle. Caffeine in tea can inhibit your melatonin production, the hormone that signals your brain that it is time to sleep. Disruption of melatonin can result in poor sleep quality.

3. Nausea and Stomachache

There are certain compounds in tea that cause nausea and stomach issue, particularly when consumed on an empty stomach or in large quantities.

For instance, tannins, the compound responsible for the dry and bitter taste of tea, have an astringent nature that can irritate digestive tissues and lead to uncomfortable symptoms such as stomach aches and nausea.


How much tea can I drink per day?

This can vary by person and other factors including weight. However, in general, most people can enjoy 3 – 4 cups or 710ml – 950ml of tea every day without adverse effects.

Can I drink tea on an empty stomach?

No, it’s not recommended to drink tea on an empty stomach. Tea is acidic in nature. And drinking them on empty stomach can disrupt the acid-basic balance, resulting in indigestion and acidity. Also, tea contains the compound “theophylline” which has a dehydrating effect and may cause constipation.


Tea is not only delicious and warming, but also linked to numerous health benefits, making it one of the most preferred beverages in the world.

With moderate consumption, tea is generally healthy. But drinking too much can cause numerous side effects including headaches, anxiety, disrupted sleep patterns, and digestive issues.

Thus, it’s important to pay attention to how your tea habit might be affecting your body.

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