Proponents of the alkaline diet claim that consuming alkaline foods raises the body’s pH levels.
They believe that when the body is more alkaline and less acidic, this promotes weight loss.
There isn’t any substantive scientific evidence to support the claim that eating alkaline foods changes blood pH levels.
That said, there is some support for the idea that consuming low-acid foods and drinks does improve our health! This is because consuming an alkaline diet reduces a person’s consumption of fatty meats, and encourages eating whole foods, such as whole grains, legumes, fruits, and vegetables.
The alkaline diet also encourages drinking tea! Herbal infusions, green tea, white tea, rooibos, and yerba mate are all alkaline and all have a positive impact on health.
But what about black tea?
Is Black Tea Alkaline?
Seven is pH neutrality. Depending on how it is brewed, black tea has a pH level of between 4.9 and 5.5. This means that black tea is lightly acidic. It can be made more alkaline if it is brewed for a short time, with more water, or combined with milk.
How to brew black tea with lower acidity levels
The lower on the pH scale a beverage is, the higher the acidity. The higher the number, the more alkaline the beverage.
Drinks with pH levels between six and seven are considered to be between low in acidity and neutral. Drinks with pH levels under four are considered highly acidic.
Black tea is mildly acidic. That said, the acidity of your cup of black tea will vary depending on your preferred way to drink black tea.
The acidity levels of black tea will change based on everything from tea variety to how long you are steeping your black tea for to whether you are adding other ingredients, such as milk and sugar, to make black tea taste better.
Adding dairy milk, which has pH levels between 6.5 and 6.7, to your tea, will make it less acidic.
What are the effects of drinking black tea with high acidity levels?
So, you may be wondering, what are there any consequences of drinking a beverage that has high levels of acidity?
Lemon juice, which most of us know to be very acidic, has a pH level of 2. Most of us know that if we drink too much lemon juice, whether it be in the form of lemonade or has been mixed into our tea, our teeth start to hurt.
And in fact, drinking too many drinks that are too high in acidity can cause damage to your teeth.
Experts consider that a “safe” pH level for drinks to be is 5.5. This means that your morning cup of black tea may cause slight damage to your teeth over time. But never fear, by adding milk to your tea you will already be lowering your tea’s acidity.
Also, take comfort in knowing that black tea drinkers are still far ahead of coffee drinkers when it comes to tooth health. Coffee has pH levels of around 4!
Another consequence of drinks that have high acidity levels is that they can cause inflammation and lead to acid reflux. People who are prone to acid reflux may want to look into alkaline alternatives to black tea.
Alkaline alternatives to black tea
Green tea is an alkaline brew, with pH levels ranging between 7 and 10. Green tea is an excellent low acidity alternative to black tea.
Green tea contains almost as much caffeine as black tea, and so still has the power to wake you up. It also has loads of other health benefits. If you aren’t a huge fan of its taste, look into how to make your green tea taste better.
Fennel tea is an herbal alkaline tea with pH levels ranging between 6.7 and 7.1. The longer you steep your fennel tea for, the lower its pH levels will be.
Fennel has been used as a medicinal plant for years. Traditional folk medicine says that fennel improves eyesight, regulates hormones, and even improves digestion.
Dandelion is a fantastic alkaline tea herb. It has a pH level of around 8.
You can brew fresh dandelion tea using leaves you find in the wild. Give them a good rinse and then steep them in water that is just below boiling for five to ten minutes.
Known for its ability to help us relax and fall asleep, chamomile flowers make a delicious infusion that just happens to be low in acidity.
Rooibos is a fantastic alkaline alternative to black tea. It has a pH level of around 9.
Rooibos is said to boost energy levels and aid digestion. It is high in antioxidants and low in tannins. It is naturally caffeine free.
Rooibos is mostly grown in Kenya and China.
You can serve your Rooibos tea with milk and a spoonful of honey or cane sugar to mimic the flavor of a milky black tea.
Yerba Mate has a pH of approximately 7, meaning it is a neutral tea.
Mate has a high mineral content and includes a wide variety of vitamins, including magnesium. It also contains potassium and zinc.
Mate has a high tannin content and a slightly bitter taste.
Mate is certainly an acquired taste, but once one has become accustomed to its vegetal flavor, one comes to appreciate its unique, earthy texture.
White tea has pH levels between 8 and 10. Teas made using just leaves are more acidic than teas that are made solely or partially out of buds.
Choosing a bud-based white tea variety like Silver Needle or White Peony will ensure you get a very alkaline brew.
That said, even white eyebrow teas that are made of only tea leaves make a delightful alkaline tea.
White tea’s flavors are far more subtle than those of black tea. That said, it does have a delicious and delicate flavor. After all, white tea is not called the “champagne of tea” for no reason!