Teas aren’t just soothing and warm beverages. They are powerful and active botanicals that can be extremely effective at taming tummy troubles. It’s easy to find relief can be found in a warm mug of tea for nausea, gas, constipation, and other symptoms.
Large meals with rich, carbohydrate-heavy foods and a few too many glasses of holiday cheer can lead to digestive discomfort: enter nausea, bloating, and indigestion!
Or perhaps despite your best efforts at staying on your food plan, you accidentally ate something with problematic ingredients. You can sip on tea to help prevent digestive issues and to get quick relief.
These teas are my go-to remedies for gas, bloating, nausea, acid reflux, and Laryngopharyngeal Reflux (LPR). They are always in my pantry and easy to carry with me on the go. Just add hot water.
In this post, you’ll learn about a few different kinds of herbal teas that you might consider to treat and prevent digestive issues. Put on the hot water kettle and let’s dive in! The first tea that we’ll talk about is one you’re probably familiar with: chamomile.
Chamomile Tea for Acid Reflux
Chamomile, a flower, is one of the oldest known medicinal herbs. While you might be quick to link chamomile to sleep – and you’re right – chamomile tea offers more benefits than a good night’s rest. Chamomile tea can also promote digestive health.
Chamomile tea can be used for (1):
- Acid reflux
- LPR (silent reflux)
- Abdominal cramps
How it works:
Chamomile is anti-inflammatory, relaxes the muscles of the digestive tract, and has mild sedative effects (2). That is a bundle of benefits packed into one mug of tea!
Do not drink chamomile tea or take chamomile supplements if you have a ragweed allergy or if you are pregnant. Chamomile is high in FODMAPs so if you are on a low-FODMAP diet it may aggravate your symptoms. Read more about other contraindications.
Ginger Tea for Nausea
Ginger is a rhizome, a specialized sort of root that has many medicinal properties, not to mention a delicious taste. You can find fresh ginger in your produce section of the grocery store; it looks a bit like a hand with papery skin on it and many branched “roots”. You can also find ginger as a dried powder in the spice aisle, pureed and packaged in a jar, pickled, or as a tea.
Ginger can be taken at a higher dose as a supplement; the ginger is powdered in a capsule.
Ginger can be used for a number of different conditions, including (3):
- Appetite stimulant
- Abdominal cramping
Ginger tea for nausea is well-known, but it also has many other benefits. It’s anti-inflammatory, anti-microbial, anti-fungal, and antioxidant properties. Ginger can increase gut motility, which can help with indigestion and constipation.
How it works:
Ginger promotes saliva production to help digest carbohydrates. It also stimulates digestive juices, bile production and has antiemetic action (fights nausea). We often recommend having ginger tea before or after a meal to help your body better digest your food.
Ginger is generally safe as a tea and as a spice. High doses (6 grams or more) can irritate the stomach lining. Because of its spicy, warming taste, it may aggravate acid reflux. Ginger supplements have contraindications with health conditions and medications, including blood thinners. Always speak with your prescribing healthcare practitioner before starting new supplements.
Peppermint Tea for Bloating
Peppermint is a vibrant green herb that is easy to grow. You can brew this tea with fresh or dried leaves and easy to find either option in your grocery store. Peppermint can also be taken as an encapsulated essential oil, which is how some of the studies choose to investigate the potential medical properties of peppermint.
- Appetite stimulation
- Mild abdominal cramping and stomach upset
How it works:
Peppermint is a carminative herb, i.e., it helps to relieve gas. Carminative herbs such as peppermint relax the intestinal muscles of the digestive tract to release gas and increase stomach acid & bile production. The menthol and flavonoids promote saliva production and have antimicrobial action.
And fun fact: peppermint has one of the largest concentrations of polyphenols of any plant food. Polyphenols serve as prebiotics for our good gut bacteria. They also can be antioxidants and are anti-inflammatory. Perhaps this is why it’s such a powerful gut-healing herb (6).
Since it could relax the esophageal sphincters too much and increase stomach acid, those with acid reflux and/or hiatal hernias should not ingest mint products including candy, gum, breath mints, and peppermint tea. Peppermint essential oil supplements may have side effects.
Turmeric Tea for Improved Digestion
Similar to ginger, turmeric is a rhizome root that can be purchased fresh, dried, and powdered, as a tea, as well as in the supplement aisle as a capsule. Turmeric is very bright yellow in color and is the star of curry mixtures. It has an earthy, peppery flavor.
Turmeric uses include (7):
- Appetite stimulant and general digestive health
- Antioxidant and detoxifying properties
- Pain relief
How it works:
Stimulates digestive juices and bile flow. It also promotes detoxifying enzymes in the liver.
Using turmeric as a tea or spice is generally safe but those with gallbladder issues should avoid turmeric. If you are interested in taking turmeric or curcumin supplements, you should be familiar with contraindications for a wide range of health conditions.
Now that we have gotten to know some of the main options to prevent digestive complaints to begin with, or tools to help calm symptoms, let’s answer a few of the main questions we get about tea in our practice.
Is peppermint tea ok for acid reflux?
We don’t recommend peppermint tea for acid reflux; because of its ability to further relax the esophageal sphincter (that muscle that is supposed to keep stomach acid in your stomach), peppermint tea might actually make your acid reflux worse.
Chamomile tea is a better herbal tea choice when you’re experiencing acid reflux. Another good option for acid reflux, GERD and LPR is one called Throat Coat by the Natural Medicinals brand. This tea includes licorice root, slippery elm and marshmallow. This trio of herbs are demulcent herbs that can help promote the healing of the throat and the lining of the esophagus (8).
Demulcent herbs are rich in polysaccharides, a type of carbohydrate that can form a slimy, gummy film. While this may sound gross, think of this film as a liquid bandage that can help protect the lining of your throat and esophagus from acid exposure while you heal.
When I had GERD and LPR, Throat Coat tea was my go to remedy. It was so soothing and instrumental at healing the delicate throat tissue.
FYI – Licorice root is not safe to take during pregnancy or if you have high blood pressure.
With acid reflux, we hope that you find relief as quickly as possible. Teas are a helpful tool in your medicinal toolbox, but they are not going to necessarily address root causes, i.e., what is causing your acid reflux to begin with?
We recommend looking at this blog post as you begin to explore possible causes (and long-term treatment options) for acid reflux, LPR, and GERD: Conquering The Root Cause of Acid Reflux.
Best tea for nausea?
The best teas for nausea include (9):
- Ginger tea
- Chamomile tea
- Peppermint tea
You may also find that warm water with lemon and honey in it is soothing when you’re feeling nauseated (10).
What teas are good for indigestion?
Indigestion can mean different symptoms for different people, so the best tea for indigestion depends on what is bothering you right now. We hope that you feel relief soon.
Chamomile and ginger teas are two good options for when you’re feeling indigestion. If acid reflux or GERD are not your current symptoms, peppermint is also a kind of tea that you can try for indigestion.
Does peppermint tea for constipation work?
Yes – peppermint tea can help improve constipation. Not only does it help with overall hydration levels (dehydration can cause constipation), the active component of the peppermint can ease constipation by stimulating the muscle movements of the digestive system and help with elimination.
Another option for constipation is ginger tea! Ginger tea can relieve constipation because it can stimulate the muscles of the digestive tract (11).
As with any recurring digestive symptom, it is important not only to seek relief from the current flare but to also investigate why the symptoms are happening to begin with. For many of our clients, perimenopause is a factor for their continued constipation: What Really Causes Perimenopause Constipation?
What is the best tea for bloating and gas?
Any of the teas that we discussed today may offer relief if you’re experiencing bloating and gas:
- Ginger tea
- Peppermint tea
- Turmeric tea
- Chamomile tea
Treating symptoms vs. the root cause
We love that that these herbal teas are cheap, simple and offer quick relief for digestive symptoms. Dealing with bloating, constipation, nausea, gas and other indigestion is no fun at all.
We also encourage you to seek help with investigating the root cause of your recurring symptoms so that you can experience long-term relief. You deserve to feel good!
And remember, it’s not just food that could be causing digestive woes. Often poor sleep and stress, which often go hand-in-hand, can contribute to recurring symptoms.
Check out these blog posts for more information:
It is also important to think about what foods and drinks that you can add to your diet, when often with digestive problems we are focusing on what things you should avoid for a bit to calm the flare. For example, in addition to adding therapeutic teas, you can add Fresh Herbs for Enhanced Digestion.
Key takeaways: Best tea for nausea, constipation, gas, and bloating
Adding a warm cup of tea may offer you immediate relief: we hope that you feel better soon!
We also recommend continuing your hunt for long-term, lasting relief by addressing the root causes of why you’re experiencing these frustrating symptoms, to begin with.
If you’re ready for support and answers, schedule an appointment! We’d be glad to help you to identify your root causes of your nausea, gas, indigestion, bloating, and other digestive woes. Together, we’ll make a comprehensive plan for relief. What a relief!
This blog post was originally posted on November 17, 2018 and updated on December 26, 2021.