Nobody likes to end a meal feeling full and bloated. And yet, it happens to us all. Maybe there is gas build-up in your gut, or you have a food intolerance, or are constipated. Maybe you just ate too much.
Whatever the case, there’s a reason it is traditional to end a meal with a cup of tea or a hot drink. There is something about the warmth and relaxation that comes with a cup of tea that helps food go down easier.
These are some teas that can help with digestion:
Peppermint has long been used to soothe digestive issues. One of the main components in peppermint is menthol. This is what gives peppermint tea its sharp-sweet cool taste. Studies in animals have shown that peppermint oil, which is high in menthol, relaxes the gastrointestinal tract, which could help with indigestion.
You can see some of my favorite peppermint teas and blends in our article on the best teas for bloating.
Licorice is probably most familiar to people as a candy. However, along with its sweetening properties, licorice has also been used for its medicinal properties since the times of the pharaohs.
It should be noted though that ingesting large amounts of glycyrrhetinic acid could lead to electrolyte imbalances, and people with congestive heart failure and kidney disease should avoid products with licorice in them.
Licorice root tea tends to be quite sweet with a hint of mint and anise flavor. Interestingly enough, black licorice, the candy, is actually flavored with anise, and not licorice, so even if you don’t like the candy, you may like the tea.
You can find a list of some of my favorite licorice teas and blends on our article: Best Teas for Acid Reflux.
Like peppermint, ginger has been used to relieve stomach issues since ancient times. Modern studies have found that ginger has strong anti-inflammatory properties. In addition, gingerol, one of ginger’s main components, has been found to reduce bloating and nausea, and hastens the stomach emptying.
Below are some of my favorite ginger teas and blends:
- Buddha Tea Ginger Root Tea: This tea is just straight up organic ginger and nothing else. It settles stomachs and eases discomfort- just don’t drink too much at once, or the acidity of the ginger can become an irritant.
- Traditional Medicinals Organic Ginger & Chamomile Herbal Tea: Built to relieve occasional indigestion, this tea is mildly spicy with floral tones. It’s strong enough to make an impact, but light enough to remain soothing.
- Art of Tea Bright Eyed (Turmeric Ginger Tea): Cinnamon, turmeric, and ginger lend this blend a warm and spicy flavor. It is healthful and nourishing, and just what I need when my stomach is out of sorts.
- Bigelow Benefits Ginger & Peach Herbal Tea: This tea combines the most stomach-friendly ingredients such as licorice root, marshmallow and ginger to create a soothing, and impactful tea.
Fennel tea is made from the seeds of the fennel plant (Foeniculum vulgare). It has been used to treat indigestion for centuries. Modern scientific studies show that fennel can be used to treat constipation, and an older study in rats shows that fennel can help prevent ulcers.
Fennel has an anise-like, licorice flavor that can be quite divisive. I, personally, do not love the taste of fennel, but I do know many people who seem to like it very much.
Here are some fennel teas and blends that people seem to like:
- Traditional Medicinals Organic Fennel Tea: Made with organic fennel seeds sourced from Bulgaria, this tea is sweet and licorice-flavored.
- Buddha Teas Digestive Nirvana Blend: Warm and spicy, this blend is made up of ginger, licorice root, fennel seeds, and other herbs for a stomach soothing drink
- Gaia Gas and Bloating Tea: Designed specifically with relieving gas and bloating in mind, this tea features fennel, licorice, chamomile, and peppermint.
- Art of Tea Cleanse Tea: This blend is based on green tea, but also includes senna, fennel, and ginger among other ingredients.
Other helpful teas
- Hibiscus tea: Hibiscus helps regulate a hormone called aldosterone which controls electrolytes and water retention, both issues related to bloat.
- Green tea: High in catechins, green tea may play a role in indigestion.
- Chamomile Tea: According to Harvard Health, chamomile may soothe and upset digestive tract
What should I look for in a tea for digestion?
After a big meal or a late night snack, you want to drink something that’s going to make you feel a little less like a beach ball, and more like a human. The teas listed above are most likely to help your gastro-intestinal system work the way it should, and leave you feeling content and energized.
But most importantly, drink tea that you like. If you don’t like fennel, drink ginger. And if you don’t like ginger, drink peppermint, and keep your digestive system happy and healthy.