Tea vs coffee: Which is better for boosting energy?

tea and coffee on a table

The war between tea and coffee lovers has continued for decades, and continues to this day!

Some drinks are better for boosting energy than others, with some even being better than energy drinks.

Caffeine, a compound found in tea and coffee, is a stimulant that reduces fatigue and increases alertness [1] [2]. Due to some variables, caffeine from coffee has a different effect on the body than caffeine from tea.

The purpose of this post is to conclude which drink is better for boosting energy: tea or coffee.

Firstly, let’s go over what happens to your body when you drink tea or coffee.

What does tea and coffee do to your body?

Both drinks contain an amount of caffeine. Caffeine blocks adenosine – a chemical found in our brain that lets us know when our body is tired and needing a rest.  

When adenosine gets blocked, our body enters into the ‘fight or flight’ mode by releasing adrenaline. Adrenaline will then make your heart beat faster and your eyes to dilate. It will also cause your liver to release extra sugar into the blood stream to support the energy required to deal with the ‘emergency’. All of those changes caused by blocked adenosine make you feel like you have more energy.  

Tea vs coffee: Caffeine content

An average cup (239ml) of coffee contains 94.8mg of caffeine compared to a cup of tea with only 26.2mg of caffeine.

It’s important to note that this is based on average cup of coffee, and may differ based on how strong the person likes their coffee and how much milk they add.

In addition, there are different types of coffee that may contain different contents of caffeine. For instance, the mushroom coffee. On the other hand, there are also different tea alternatives that may contain other natural compounds that may boost energy.

However, based on an average cup – coffee contains more caffeine than tea.

Tea or coffee: which is better for energy?

Despite coffee having more caffeine than tea, there are other factors that suggest tea being better for boosting energy. Below is a list of 3 reasons why.

1. Slow release of caffeine

When you drink coffee, you may feel a quick boost to your energy levels. Depending on how strong you like your coffee, you may feel a bit jittery, uncomfortable and anxious. This is because the caffeine found in coffee is quickly absorbed by the body. However, after a few hours, you are likely to experience a dive in your energy and feeling more tired than before. Learn more about coffee and why does it make you sleepy here.

The caffeine from tea releases energy over a longer period of time which provides sustainable energy levels. Caffeine in tea is more unique because it attaches itself to catechins (antioxidants) making it a bigger compound. As a result, it takes between 4-6 hours for caffeine to be digested.

In addition, because tea releases caffeine gradually, it minimises the impact of when it leaves our body. So, you won’t feel such a sudden loss of energy like you would with coffee.

2. Mellow effect on the body

Earlier, we covered what tea and coffee do to our body right? Well, as the body enters into the ‘fight or flight’ mode, it also releases stress hormones. These hormones include, cortisol, epinephrine, and norepinephrine.

As a result of these hormonal changes, a person can experience jitters and faster heart rate.

On the other hand, tea has a much better effect on the body because tea leaves contain an amino acid called l-theanine. This ingredient actually calms the nervous system and reduces blood pressure, heart rate, blood pressure and stress levels.

By combining caffeine and l-theanine, you are getting the best of both worlds – a sustainable boost to your energy levels and a soothing feeling.

3. Are tea and coffee dehydrating?

Both tea and coffee are diuretics which means they increase water loss from the body.

This does not mean that you will lose more water from the body than what the cup of tea or coffee holds.

A survey on caffeine found that coffee drinkers lose approximately 146ml after drinking 200ml cup of coffee. This means that the cup of coffee only provides 54ml of fluid for the body.

The diuretic effect is caused by caffeine, which means that tea won’t have such a dramatic water loss effect since it contains less caffeine.

4 teas for boosting energy levels (aside from black tea)

Matcha tea and black tea certainly take the spotlight in boosting energy levels. Pique tea recently released a great selection of teas that are perfect for boosting energy. You can use code ‘NUTRITION2CHANGE’ to get a discount.

White tea

White tea provides a mellow boost to the energy levels which makes it a perfect alternative if you struggle to handle caffeine at high doses. White tea is perfect for alternating between high doses of caffeine too. This will help you obtain steady energy throughout the day.

Matcha Green Tea

Matcha tea is one of our favourite energy boosting teas! It contains approximately 75mg of caffeine per cup and it’s made from green tea leaves.

Matcha green tea isn’t just perfect for boosting energy but it is also strong in antioxidants making it great for cardiovascular health, immune system and stress levels.

Pique Tea offers one of the purest matcha teas out there that is not only organic but it has also been tested for toxins. Check it out here.

Twining’s Superblends Vitality

This 5-star tea contains pear, apples, mint and nettle, and it’s also enriched with vitamin C. This makes it a perfect blend for reducing tiredness and fatigue.

Vitamin C plays a huge role in releasing energy from the food you consume making it a great ingredient for providing high quality energy.

The Twining’s Superblend Boost tea

This tea is incredible for boosting energy and gives you the morning pick-up you need!

Its zingy flavour containing mandarin, apple, green tea and guarana naturally wake up your senses.

This tea is also enriched with vitamin B6 which also helps to release energy from food providing high quality energy over a longer period of time.


In this post, we covered variety of reasons why tea is much better than coffee for boosting energy.

It isn’t just about obtaining energy for 30 mins but more about boosting your energy levels for the whole day. As a result, tea certainly takes the spotlight.

If you’ve enjoyed todays post then make sure to subscribe to our newsletter below. Subscribe today to download 6 FREE fat loss recipe and 20 nutrition and exercise tips.


* indicates required
No payment method connected. Contact seller.

Related posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.