The Worst Time To Drink Green Tea Is Prior To Sleep. Here's Why

If you're a green tea lover, then you probably like the idea of having a freshly brewed, steaming cup of it near bedtime to help you relax. However, while it may feel comforting in the moment, you'll likely come to regret it when you're lying in bed and trying to sleep. Why? Green tea is full of caffeine.

Green tea has about 25 to 45 milligrams of caffeine in an eight-ounce cup. To put that into perspective, one cup of coffee has about 95 milligrams of caffeine, on average. While green tea may only have about half the amount of caffeine as coffee, it's certainly enough to keep you up past your bedtime, especially if consumed right before you'd like to go to sleep. While you're at it, you'll also want to avoid drinking black tea, oolong tea, and white tea before bedtime. Black tea has the most caffeine with 64 to 112 milligrams, while oolong tea contains between 29 and 53 milligrams, and white tea has between 32 and 37 milligrams.

Instead, opt to enjoy your green tea in the morning or during the day, although not too close to meal times as it can block the absorption of nutrients from food.

Which teas are best to enjoy before bed?

Luckily, not all teas contain caffeine, so, as long as you're open to switching out the green tea, you have no reason to give up your pre-bedtime cup of tea. When it comes to choosing a bedtime tea, you'll want to stick to herbal teas, as most herbal teas are caffeine-free. These teas include chamomile, peppermint, hibiscus, and ginger tea. There are a rare few herbal teas that contain caffeine, such as yerba mate (it contains about 80 milligrams, which isn't that far off from a cup of coffee), so check the tea box label to make sure that there is no caffeine in the herbal tea that you're buying.

If you really want to stick to green tea at nighttime, then your best bet is to have a box of decaf tea on hand. Decaf green tea is not completely caffeine-free, but it has a much lower caffeine level at just two milligrams. At such a low caffeine amount, you luckily shouldn't have a problem getting to sleep after enjoying a cup of decaf green tea. In fact, most decaf teas contain between just one and eight milligrams of caffeine, so you can also enjoy a cup of decaf black tea, oolong, or white tea before bedtime if you so choose.