Decaffeinating Your Tea
A little hot water is all you need to decaffeinate your tea.
many years, coffee lovers have had their pick of a number of delicious
decaffeinated blends, but the options have been more limited for those
who prefer tea. Tea contains less caffeine than coffee, but there is
still quite a bit there, and this can pose a problem for tea drinkers
who want to banish the drug while still enjoying their daily tea
ritual. Luckily, there are solutions out there, including a quick and
simple way to remove the caffeine from your favorite teas at home.
Edgar Veytia, CEO of Botanical Health, Inc., parent company of Elixir, worked in
business operations in Central and South America prior to starting Elixir Tonics & Teas. For most of the 80s
and 90s, Mr. Veytia presided over multi-million dollar international
management consulting companies that served a number of Fortune 500
corporations. Several years ago, Veytia and business partner Jeffrey
Stein founded Elixir, offering herbal
medicine, elixirs, tonics, and a wide variety of teas. Elixir has a
full-time staff of certified herbalists who will answer any health
questions from chronic sinus problems to skin irritations with a
recommendation of naturals teas, tonics, and herbs. Veytia is currently
the CEO of Elixir, and offers the following advice for tea drinker
looking to cut out down on caffeine:
- Caffeine levels.
Different varieties of tea contain different levels of caffeine. This
is why, according to Veytia, many people drink black teas in the
morning, green teas during the day and a nice white tea after dinner.
If you’re looking to cut down on caffeine, it may be a simple matter of
choosing a variety that naturally has less caffeine.
- Decaffeinated tea. Grocery stores and teashops
do carry selected brands of pre-decaffeinated teas, and these can be
good options as well. Veytia recommends checking the label to see if
the caffeine has been removed by a chemical process and passing on the
product if it has.
- Hot water. One of the best ways to make tea
that has little or no caffeine is to remove the caffeine yourself. A
traditional and effective way to do this, says Veytia, is to pour a
little bit of hot water into the leaves and then swirl the mixture
around for about 30 seconds.
- Pour it off. Next you simply pour the water
off, and then add the full amount of hot water and steep the leaves as
usual. The reason this helps decaffeinate the tea is that caffeine is
the first photochemical to infuse into the water, so by pouring off the
first batch of water, you are pouring off between 80 and 90 percent of
the caffeine that was in the tealeaves.
- Enjoy. Now that you have quickly and easily
removed the caffeine from your favorite tea, you can sit back and enjoy
as many cups as you want. Happy sipping!
For more information about tea, check out the following organizations or websites:
The Tea Homepage
Tea Review Archive
The Tea Ring Index
A World of Tea