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- Best tea overall: lemon balm
- Best tea for antioxidants: green tea
- Best tea for cramps: ginger tea
- Best tea for digestion: senna tea
- Best tea for stress relief: honey lavender blend
- Best tea for anxiety: herbal blend tea
- Best tea for stomach health: chamomile tea
- Best tea for brain health: rosemary tea
- Best tea for improving mood: lavender tea
- Best tea for a caffeine-free boost: rose tea
- Best tea for deep sleep: valerian root tea
- Best tea for IBS: peppermint tea
- Best tea for inflammation: oat straw tea
For thousands of years, people have used herbal teas to improve their health and to simply enjoy. Herbal teas may help reduce stress, anxiety, and may even help you sleep better.
They also affect everyone differently due to varying stress levels and taste buds. Finding the right tea for you may take a few tries, or you can keep an assortment in your cupboard to satisfy different needs and tastes.
Research supports that some herbs can have some powerful effects on our stress levels, and, as a result, our mental and physical health. This list of 13 herbal teas will help you find the best tea for your current needs.
Herbal teas contain multiple types of natural anti-inflammatory compounds that may
- antioxidants, which help protect the body from stress
- antiviral and antibacterial compounds
- herbs that may reduce inflammation
- herbs that may reduce the risk of blood clots and high blood pressure
Drinking a cup of herbal tea each day may help protect your health in the long term and reduce stress levels. For example, a
Be sure to talk with your doctor before introducing any herbal teas (or herbal supplements for that matter!) to your diet. Some teas can affect health conditions or medications. For example, chamomile acts as a
We chose the following herbal teas by diving into what the research says about their stress-reducing properties.
Herbal tea is generally considered safe for most people, but certain types may cause an allergic reaction. Before trying a tea or adding one to your routine, research any possible drug interactions or how it may affect certain health conditions.
Be sure to follow brewing instructions, and check expiration dates on the packaging to get the maximum benefits out of these teas.
- $ = under $0.40 per serving
- $$ = $0.40—$1 per serving
- $$$ = over $1 per serving
Best tea overall
- Price: $
- Who it’s best for: those looking for feelings of calmness and mood boosting
People have used the herb lemon balm to reduce stress for hundreds and hundreds of years. Lemon balm is available in capsules, tablets, creams, and as a tea. Anecdotal reports and scientific research suggest that lemon balm may help with relaxation, boost mood, and ease the symptoms of stress.
Although some human studies have shown that lemon balm products have a positive effect on mood and stress, existing studies have used concentrated doses of lemon balm, not lemon balm tea, so it’s unclear if lemon balm tea has the same effect.
Lemon balm tea pros
- historically used to reduce stress
- may help with relaxation and mood boosting
Lemon balm tea cons
- studies showing positive results typically use concentrated lemon balm, so the tea’s effect is inconclusive
Best tea for antioxidants
- Price: $
- Who it’s best for: those looking for high health benefits
Research has shown that green tea may benefit health in other ways. For instance, drinking green tea on a regular basis
Green tea pros
- comes with many health benefits thanks to the high antioxidant amount
Green tea cons
- large amounts can cause side effects from caffeine, like irregular heartbeat or headache
Best tea for cramps
- Price: $
- Who it’s best for: those who have stomach or abdominal cramps
If you suffer from menstrual or other abdominal cramps, you’re in luck.
Studies suggest that the anti-inflammatory compounds found in ginger, including shogaols and gingerols, may help relieve menstrual cramps when taken at the start of your period. However, doses
Ginger tea pros
- effective at relieving menstrual cramps
- has shown to
lower blood pressure
Ginger tea cons
- may experience heartburn or lightheadedness, though this is uncommon
Best tea for digestion
- Price: $
- Who it’s best for: those looking to improve digestion and avoid indigestion
Senna tea is herbal tea containing the senna plant’s leaves. You can drink it straight or in combination with other herbs like milk thistle, chamomile, or turmeric.
The tea’s sennoside chemicals
Senna tea pros
- may help relieve constipation
Senna tea cons
- consuming too much may lead to diarrhea
- may cause loss of key electrolytes, minerals, and fiber
Best tea for stress relief
- Price: $
- Who it’s best for: those looking to de-stress at the end of the day
Lavender tea is made with a brew of the Lavandula angustifolia plant’s purple buds in hot water. This plant is frequently found in Mediterranean climates. It’s easy to add complementary flavors to lavender tea, like the honey in this blend from Yogi.
Honey lavender tea pros
- can be a great way to relax, de-stress, and unwind
- smells lovely, making it ideal for aromatherapy
Honey lavender tea cons
- potential side effects on the nervous system, so you should consult with a healthcare professional prior to drinking it
- studies on benefits and safety for breastfeeding or pregnant people are rare or inconclusive
Best tea for anxiety
- Price: $
- Who it’s for: those looking to relieve anxiety
Herbal teas have been a long-established way of bringing calm to daily life. They include ingredients like rooibos, rose petals, lavender, passionflower, and chamomile that have been
In fact, the flavonoid apigenin, an active ingredient in chamomile,
Herbal tea pros
- may reduce stress and mild anxiety and depression in certain doses
Herbal tea cons
- natural doesn’t always mean safe, as some herbal teas have
caused liver damage
- some herbs may not be good for pregnant people (consult with your doctor)
Best tea for stomach health
- Price: $
- Who it’s best for: those who have stomach or intestinal issues
Today, many people associate chamomile tea with a good night’s sleep. However, this herb was traditionally used to treat stomach and intestinal issues, including gas, upset stomach, stomach inflammation, and anxiety-related loose stools.
Chamomile tea pros
- effective at treating intestinal and stomach issues, including Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)
- calming and a great sleep aid
Chamomile tea cons
- though rare, side effects can include dizziness, nausea, and allergic reactions
- safety for kids and nursing or pregnant people is inconclusive
Best tea for brain health
- Price: $$
- Who it’s best for: those looking to sharpen their memory
Rosemary is a popular herb for cooking and fragrances. One of its less common uses is as an herbal tea. Still, some
The research shows that the compounds in rosemary can help reduce inflammation, prevent ulcers, and improve overall brain health.
Although encouraging, the research on rosemary tea itself is still insufficient and it’s difficult to know its long-term effects.
Rosemary tea pros
- regular consumption may help with brain health
- may help reduce inflammation
- smells good
Rosemary tea cons
- limited or lacking research exists
- tough to know long-term effects with certainty
Best tea for improving mood
- Price: $$
- Who it’s best for: those looking to reduce feelings of depression and boost their mood
Lavender tea may benefit your digestive and mental health. Lavender extract has long been used in aromatherapy to promote relaxation, and research suggests that there may be mental health benefits from drinking it, too.
Lavender itself may also help promote relaxation and sleep and
Lavender tea pros
- great for improved mental health and relaxation
Lavender tea cons
- found to possibly produce side effects like diarrhea, headache, and constipation
- tea taste and smell can vary widely across brands or types
Best tea for a caffeine-free boost
- Price: $$
- Who it’s best for: those looking for a yummy, caffeine-free beverage
Rose tea is a naturally caffeine-free drink. It can serve as a great morning or afternoon boost.
While caffeine does have some positive benefits, it
Over the years, people have added rose petals to cakes, jams, and hot teas for flavoring. Rose petals are also a good source of antioxidants like vitamins C, A, and E.
There have been some side effects found, especially in those who have asthma, allergies, or take certain medications. You should talk with your doctor prior to introducing the tea to your diet.
Rose tea pros
- naturally caffeine-free
- offers antioxidants like vitamins A, C, and E
Rose tea cons
- may adversely affect those with asthma or allergies
- can react with some medications like antidepressants
Best tea for deep sleep
- Price: $
- Who it’s best for: those who want a good night’s sleep
The deep stages of sleep are believed to be the most restorative and essential to feeling well-rested in the morning. Valerian root is widely used to help improve sleep quality and quantity, especially for deep sleep.
Studies suggest that the herb valerian works by blocking an enzyme that interferes with gamma-aminobutyric acid’s (GABA) function. GABA is a neurotransmitter that blocks impulses between nerve cells in the brain, leading to increased feelings of calm.
In addition, there’s research to support valerian root tea as a sleep aid.
Valerian root tea pros
- can improve deep sleep quality and length
- can trigger feelings of calmness
Valerian root tea cons
- effectiveness is mixed and mostly anecdotal
- side effects vary and can include heart palpitations and vivid dreams
Best tea for IBS
- Price: $
- Who it’s best for: those needing to treat indigestion
Peppermint is an herb commonly used to relieve digestive issues. A
Additional research suggests that even the smell of peppermint may help reduce anxiety and stress: A
Peppermint tea pros
- may help with constipation and stomach pain
- a caffeine-free way to possibly feel refreshed and alert
Peppermint tea cons
- may exacerbate acid reflux
- can interact with certain medications and health conditions (consult with a healthcare professional)
Best tea for inflammation
- Price: $$
- Who it’s best for: those who are in the market for a natural way to possibly reduce inflammation
Oat straw tea is made from the stems, seeds, and flowers of the oat plant. Oat tea extract has been used for centuries in traditional medicine to help relax, increase mood, and
There’s minimal research on how oat straw affects health when consumed as a tea, even though it has been long used for traditional medicine. However, oat straw extract is rich in antioxidants, including avenanthramides, which
Oat straw tea pros
- may help with reducing feelings of tiredness or fatigue
- can boost your mood and promote relaxation
- may reduce inflammation
Oat straw tea cons
- limited research on benefits but has been used in traditional medicine for many years
|Tea type||Pricing||What it’s best for||Customer rating (out of 5)||Who should try it|
|Lemon balm||$$||overall wellness||4.7||those looking for better overall balance, calm, and positivity in their lives|
|Green||$||antioxidants||4.7||those looking for high health benefits|
|Ginger||$$||cramps||4.7||those who have stomach or abdominal cramps|
|Senna||$||digestion||4.5||those looking to improve digestion and avoid indigestion|
|Honey lavender||$$||stress relief||4.8||those looking to destress at the end of the day|
|Herbal blend||$||anxiety||4.6||those looking to relieve feelings of anxiety|
|Chamomile||$$||stomach health||4.6||those who have stomach or intestinal issues|
|Rosemary||$$$||brain health||4.6||those looking to sharpen their memory|
|Lavender||$$$||mood boosting||4.5||those looking to reduce feelings of depression and boost their mood|
|Rose||$$$||caffeine-free boost||4.7||those who want to reduce their consumption of caffeine|
|Valerian root||$$||deep sleep||4.5||those needing a good night’s sleep|
|Peppermint||$||IBS||4.6||those who want to treat indigestion|
|Oat straw||$$$||inflammation||4.3||those who want a natural way to possibly reduce inflammation|
When picking out an herbal tea, you should first research how well it can reduce stress or deliver the outcome you’re looking for. It’s also important to abide by expiration dates to get the maximum benefits.
Additionally, you should consider if you have allergies, health conditions, or any other reasons to believe you could react to specific ingredients. If so, consult a healthcare professional or investigate potential drug interactions and effects on certain health conditions.
Finally, check out reviews and how the teas are brewed for the best results before choosing your tea.
It’s important to treat your stress or anxiety so your symptoms don’t linger or get worse. Additionally, while certain teas can help with some health benefits, they can’t serve as an alternative for receiving help from a professional.
You should consider seeing a doctor if you:
- find that your anxiety, worry, or fear is too stressful and tough to control
- feel that you’re worrying to the point that it’s interfering with daily life (this can include things like personal hygiene, social interactions, school, or work)
- feel your anxiety is due to an underlying mental health issue
- feel depressed, are using drugs or alcohol to deal, or have other, larger mental health concerns
How many cups of tea is an okay amount to drink daily?
Daily tea consumption can depend on whether or not the blend is caffeinated. Generally, you shouldn’t have more than 3 cups of caffeinated tea a day. You may be able to drink more cups of non-caffeinated tea each day, however, you should be wary of any potential side effects specific to the brew.
Pay attention to any effects and adjust if this is too much for you.
You should talk with your doctor about any questions you have.
Does green tea relieve stress?
Can drinking iced tea relieve stress?
Though some people find hot tea more comforting than iced tea, most teas should have the same properties and stress-relieving benefits whether they’re iced or hot.
Herbal teas are an excellent addition to any self-care routine, or are perfect for a bit of stress relief. Enjoy both the taste and scents of these teas to gain their full benefits.
Many of the herbs mentioned here are also available in blended tea varieties, so you can reap the benefits of multiple herbs for stress management. If you’re considering adding new herbal teas or supplements to your daily routine, talk with your doctor first, as some may interact with certain medications and health conditions.
Ashley Braun, MPH, RD, is a health and wellness writer based in Michigan. Her work helps people understand what affects their health, so they can make informed choices to take back the control in their health and wellness journey.