Doctor's Note

For more on fluoride, check out Plant-Based Diets: Dental Health.

And check out my other videos on tea.

Also see my associated blog posts: The Best DetoxNutmeg Toxicity; and Is Caffeinated Tea Really Dehydrating?

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  • Michael Greger M.D.

    Please feel free to post any ask-the-doctor type questions here in the comments section and I’d be happy to try to answer them. And check out the other videos on tea. Also, there are 1,449 other subjects covered in the rest of my videos–please feel free to explore them as well!

  • Toxins

    What about caffeine? Tea is healthy but caffeine cant really be considered healthy?

    • Tea contains polyphenols, which are powerful antioxidants and help reduce free radical damage and oxidisation. Societies built on tea, such as China and Japan, seem to have low levels of cancer compared to Western countries – although it’s worth noting that they tend to consume green tea. At the same time, tea – especially black tea – also contains tannins, which inhibit the absorption of minerals such as zinc and iron. So too much is not a good idea. Caffeine, whether in tea or coffee, is a stimulant which can cause anxiety and disrupt the sleep cycle if taken in excess (you don’t need a study to show you that!), as well as leading to withdrawal effects such as headaches. But based on the research, there are also benefits to consuming coffee (see However, women who drink coffee and who are (or want to be) pregnant should view this video:, and those prone to premenstrual syndrome (PMS) should check out this post from my PMS warrior blog:

      • Toxins

        It was noted by Dr. Caldwell Essylsten that when one drinks coffee, epithelial cell damage occurs, and it was linked to the caffeine. To weigh out the pros and cons, this outweighs the pros for me so I drink decaf.

  • BPCveg

    Given the fluoride toxicity case, I wonder whether you would recommend that your followers change to non-fluoride toothpaste?

    • Toxins

        Here is Dr. Greger’s position on fluoride

      “The proposed (!OpenDocument) EPA changes to water fluoridation have sparked a resurgence of many of the  old anti-fluoridation arguments, which as far as I can tell were  successfully debunked ( over 50 years ago. According to the CDC, fluoridation of drinking water joins vaccination (another unjustly vilified practice) as one of the greatest public health achievements in the last last century (”

      • A_Little_Bit_of_Everything

        All 3 links are dead!

      • bareheadedwoman

        there’s a big difference between naturally occurring and relatively harmless calcium fluoride and fluosolicic acid (by product of extracting uranium) or sodium fluoride (byproduct from china) Might want to look up the different types of “fluoride” that gets added to our water rather than say that “all fluoride” dangers have been debunked. The fluoride debunked in those studies IS NOT the “fluoride” added to our water.

  • ghulstyle

    a couple weeks ago started drinking organic green tea and i noticed every time i drink it i become unusually sad and anxious for no reason and i get really depressed, it last i think for a couple of hours

    can grean tea cause depression like symptoms in people?

    • Michael Greger M.D.

      The only study I’m aware of found that drinking 4 or more cups of tea a day was associated with significantly less depressive symptoms. But your own body knows best. If you don’t like how it makes you feel then I’d follow Toxins’ and DrDons’ advice to switch to something else.

    • Arjan de Hollander.

      From personal experience I know for my own body set in anxiety mode, caffeine do not go well together. Green better then coffee but still sweating above my nails on fingers after coffee or tea is a dead give away I need for at least a while cut down on caffeine.

      Ignoring such a warning even when feeling fine and suffer a stressor on top of it, panic disorder gets to be the boss of me and I’ll just have to suffer the consequences.

      Caffeine reaction is my panic disorder barometer.

      • Thea

        Arjan: I think it is pretty cool that you have such a clear indicator – and that you are aware of it. I think a lot of people (myself included) don’t pay enough attention to signs our body is giving us.

        Thanks for sharing.

  • Toxins

    You perhaps could be sensitive to caffeine, try decaf tea and see if you feel the same way

  • DrDons

    I haven’t come across patients who have depressive symptoms from green tea. I think Toxins suggestion is worth trying. If that doesn’t work you might be sensitive to any one of hundreds of other ingredients in green tea so best to avoid drinking it. You could experiment with other teas see and avoid green tea.

  • GeorgeI

    A Quick Note About How Much Green Tea East Asians Drink:

    East Asians, when drinking green tea will typically reuse the leaves. So a quart a day isn’t 4 fresh servings of tea.

    A decent ( not good, just decent ) quality green tea can be used more than once.

    East Asians will typically start off with a small pot of green tea leaves and keep reusing all day long, just refreshing it with more hot water.

    So, they probably get a lot less caffeine.

  • Aaron

    How about Matcha? Would you say it has the same upper limit as regular green tea or is the fluoride increased when one consumes the actual leaves?

    • Narrativeart

       Yes, I would like to know the answer to that too. Thanks.

  • Jsmaine2253230

     I am have seen this study in my past researches on tea. You did not note that this woman was specifically drinking large quantities of “brick tea” – apparently an important point, since brick tea is rather like ground whole-plant tea, and possibly contains a much greater concentration of hand-picked teas (only the leaves), such as those found in most higher-quality loose or bagged tea.

  • mbglife

    What’s the ounce size of a cup of tea? Is it 8, like a standard cup or 4, as in most teacups?

    • peseta11

      A British teacup is about 5 fluid ounces, a Greek teacup close to 6.

  • Jaroslav Ružička

    And what about the exposure to aluminum in tea?

  • sustainability

    how many teaspoons is safe for matcha tea? What about straight up tea leaves chopped like you would find in a herb jar at the store?

  • Trashtagger

    Does this go for bagged tea as well? Should I not use more than 10 tea bags a day?

  • Johanna
  • MikeB

    “Overdosing on Tea” or is it fluoride? We don’t drink bottled tea and we have well water. Is there fluoride in tea bags or plants?