I don't think it's a secret that the UK has a pretty substantial infatuation with a good ol' cup of tea. I mean, only in Britain would there be an invention that combined an alarm clock with a kettle (known as a Teasmade) which would let you wake up to a fresh cuppa without having to even leave your bedroom. But what if I told you that having a cup of tea in bed could be bad for you? As heavenly as it is to have that lovely warm beverage on your bedside while you get your morning bearings, it could actually cause you some serious problems in the long run.
It's all thanks to your digestive system, and it how handles caffeine first thing in the morning. If you drink a cup of tea — or coffee — on an empty stomach, it can cause a multitude of problems. According to tea blog TeaVivre, drinking a cup of tea first thing can led to gastrointestinal discomfort and can even lead to chronic gastritis. This is because you need to line your stomach with food before you drink tea or coffee as the caffeine "may trigger the stomach acids and wreck havoc with your digestion," as nutritionist and food guru Pooja Makhija told broadcaster NDTV.
Drinking caffeine as soon as you get up could also cause dehydration, but this has often been disputed as it's not clear whether caffeine is a diuretic. Nevertheless, you'll feel so much better — and hydrated —starting the day with a pint of water rather than a cup of tea.
But that's not to say that tea is inherently harmful — far from it. As has been shown in numerous studies, regularly drinking caffeine can actually benefit your health if taken in the right dose and at the right time of day. A study published in the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI) medical journal, researchers found that tea can help prevent numerous types of cancer and can also reduce the risk of developing cardiovascular diseases, arthritis, and diabetes due to tea containing polyphenols which are an antioxidant.
Another study published by the Stanford School of Medicine also suggests that caffeine can also prevent chronic inflammation which can often lead to illnesses such as Alzheimer's disease, other dementias, and even depression according to the study. "Our findings show that an underlying inflammatory process, which is associated with ageing, is not only driving cardiovascular disease but is, in turn, driven by molecular events that we may able to target and combat," professor of microbiology and immunology Mark Davis explained, who is one of the authors of the study.
Basically, tea lovers across the nation can breath a collective sigh of relief with that info. You can still experience the luxury of having your cuppa in bed, but just make sure that when you have your tea in the morning to have your breakfast with it, too. I mean breakfast in bed is a thing for a reason, y'know.