Northeast India’s Only English and Hindi Satellite News Channel

ICMR warns against sipping tea or coffee just before or after meals. Here is why

First Published: 14th May, 2024 18:33 IST

While the ICMR has not asked people to completely avoid tea or coffee, but it has cautioned consumers to beware of the caffeine content in these beverages.

Be careful, if you have the habit of sipping a cup of coffee and tea before or after having a meal. The Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) has cautioned the people who are habituated in doing this.

Recently the ICMR has released a set of 17 dietary guidelines for Indians in a bid to encourage a balanced and diverse diet coupled with healthy living.

In one of the guidelines, the medical panel with its research wing the National Institute of Nutrition (NIN) explained that the consumption of tea and coffee should be done in moderation.

While the ICMR has not asked people to completely avoid tea or coffee, but it has cautioned consumers to beware of the caffeine content in these beverages.

A cup (150ml) of brewed coffee contains 80–120mg of caffeine, instant coffee contains 50–65mg and tea contains 30–65mg of caffeine.

“Moderation in tea and coffee consumption is advised so that caffeine intake does not exceed the tolerable limits (300mg/day),” the ICMR wrote, stating the daily limit of caffeine a person can have.
However, they asked people to avoid having coffee and tea at least one hour before and after a meal.

This is because these beverages contain a compound called tannin. When it is consumed, tannins can interfere with iron absorption in the body.

What does this mean?

This means that tannin can reduce the amount of iron your body absorbs from food.

Tannin can bind to iron in the digestive tract, forming a complex that is harder for the body to absorb. This reduces the amount of iron that enters your bloodstream from the food you eat.

This leads to a decrease in iron availability in your body. Iron is essential for making haemoglobin, a protein in red blood cells that carries oxygen throughout the body.

It is also important for energy production and overall cell function. Lower iron levels can lead to iron deficiency and conditions like anaemia.

Common symptoms of iron deficiency in the body are feeling tired very often or lack of energy, breathlessness, frequent headaches especially with activity, unexplained weakness, rapid heartbeat, pale skin, craving for ice, brittle nails or hair loss.

Besides this, the ICMR researchers stated that having tea without milk can have added health benefits like promoting blood circulation and can help reduce the risk of coronary artery disease (CAD) and stomach cancer.

On the other hand, consuming high levels of coffee is linked to high blood pressure and abnormalities in heartbeat.

Other dietary guidelines by the medical panel including consuming less oil, having a diet rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean meats and seafood. They urged people not to consume protein supplements, and have less oil in their food by limiting sugar and salt.



8-hour intermittent fasting each day increases risk of cardiovascular death: Study

The researchers, led by Victor Zhong of the Shanghai Jiao Tong University School of Medicine, analyzed data from adults included in the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey

19th March 2024
Boost your health with these nutritious foods that are high in Vitamin D

Vitamin D is an essential nutrient that plays a crucial role in supporting overall health. While sunlight is the primary source of vitamin D, you can also boost your levels by consuming certain foods. But, vitamin D requirements vary depending on factors such as age and individual health conditions. It’s always a good idea to […]

18th July 2023
International Yoga Day 2023: All you need to know about this day

This year the theme of Yoga Day is 'Yoga For Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam' i.e. Yoga for the welfare of all in the form of 'One World-One Family'.

19th June 2023
Google Lens can now identify skin condition and also help with homework

Apart from being able to identify things like clothes and landmarks, Google Lens can also help you with your homework and translate menus and boards on the go. Here are some simple tips and tricks that will help you make the most out of it. Google Lens is often used by people to identify or […]

15th June 2023
Are you a mosquito magnet? It could be your soap

Lathering with soap could be one of the reasons you become more attractive to mosquitoes

13th June 2023