Sunday, January 9, 2011

Tea, The Perfect Hangover Remedy Part II: Types of Tea for Hangover Symptoms

It seems every tea drinker has a preference for the type of tea they use to manage a hangover. Most tea drinkers seem to choose either a green tea or puerh tea though.

Green tea has the strongest detoxification properties of any type of tea. It is the colour green- the purest manifestation of the Wood element. Even its raw leaves can be ground to a paste and used topically over burns and bug bites. This is partly because of its detoxification properties and part due to its cooling thermal nature.

The properties of flavour explain how green tea reduces toxicity. Green tea is cool, bitter, and sweet. Cool bitter flavours are especially draining. Green tea is a diuretic, its detoxification mechanism involves removing the toxin through the urine. Although it is a diuretic it also quenches thirst and rehydrates the body and mind. This regenerative property is due to its sweet flavour. Sweet flavours are especially strengthening. These properties of green tea combat hangover symptoms such as headaches, dry mouth, lethargy, and even drunkenness.

Green tea is especially good at reducing that warm, feverish hangover feeling and regulating body temperture. The sensation of heat/ fever is the body’s natural way of reacting to a toxic substance as the body mobilizes against the toxic substance (in this case a drink too many). This benefit is due to its cooling thermal nature.

The downside of using green tea as a hangover remedy is that it can irritate an already shaky stomach. To prevent this from happening you should make a lighter, more diluted green tea that isn’t as strong.

Old puerh tea also has detoxification properties but uses a different mechanism than green tea. Puerh tea’s warm thermal nature goes deep within the body and pushes out toxins by diaphoresis, by sweating. Its strong, calming chaqi is also great at soothing a headache and clearing the mind.

Old puerh tea is especially calming for the stomach and promotes digestion. Because puerh tea descends deeply and is warm and comforting, it calms nausea and regulates digestive functioning. In this way puerh tea is especially helpful for hangovers with nausea predominating.

Other aged teas such as Hunan black teas and aged oolong as well as Korean yellows (bal hyo cha) have a powerful effect at harmonizing and comforting the middle. These teas often pour a yellow colour- which connect them to the Earth element, to the digestive system, and to the middle of the body. These teas therefore have a strong regulating function especially for digestion. These teas also have much more sweet flavour than bitter. The predominance of light, sweet flavours suggest that these teas are strengthening. These aged teas and Korean yellow teas have a more mild result of balancing the body and mind after a hard night of drinking.

So whether you are a puerh drinker, a green tea drinker, or whether you are just simply a drinker, chances are there is a type of tea for your hangover.

Here is a link to Part I if you missed it.



RTea said...

What an interesting post...I wonder what I would respond to best with my penchant for whiskey?!?

Happy New Year.

Matt said...


Hahaha... let us know what works best!


Anonymous said...

I was feeling pretty festive and I drank 1.5L of red wine yesterday night followed by 2 cups of pu-erh right before bed. Just go up about an hour ago (6 AM) feeling unbelievably good. Love that stuff!

Matt said...


Having some puerh at the end of a night of drinking is a nice way to prevent a hangover and an even better way to wind down a good night. Green tea just doesn't feel right here. Thanks for sharing your experiences.

Here's to sober mornings!