Earl Grey Benefits + Side Effects

By Adriane Marie •  Updated: 07/03/22 •  11 min read
earl grey benefits and side effects

What are Earl Grey tea benefits and side effects every ethical consumer must know? Here are Earl Grey tea pros and cons and how buying it will impact your health, the environment, animals and laborers. 

Food is something we consume every day and if you’re like me, you do all the research you can to make sure you don’t hurt yourself, the planet, animals or others when shopping. As an ethical consumer myself, I am giving you all the info I’ve found on Earl Grey tea benefits and side effects.

You are going to learn all about Earl Grey tea benefits and side effects. This will include Earl Grey tea benefits for your health and potential risks, Earl Grey tea water footprint and Earl Grey tea carbon footprint, Earl Grey tea sustainability, if Earl Grey tea is vegan or impacts animals in other ways, and much more. 

After learning if Earl Grey tea is good or bad for you, the environment, animals and human rights, you will be prepared to make the best choices you can the next time you buy food.

This post is all about Earl Grey tea benefits and side effects that every ethical consumer should know.

Must-Know Earl Grey Tea Benefits And Side Effects

Health

Earl grey health benefits may include:

Earl grey side effects may include:

Additionally, Earl grey is…

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Environment

Water footprint: high, it takes 8,856 liters of water to produce 1 kilogram of black tea / 1,061 gallons of water to produce 1 pound of black tea

Carbon footprint: low, 1.9 kg CO2e to produce 1 kilogram or 2.2 pounds of tea, a car driving equivalent of 4.5 miles or 7.25 kilometers

Destruction: low, black tea production is relatively sustainable, there is no known significant damage to air, water, land, soil, forests, etc. as long as pesticides have not been used, be sure to buy Non-GMO/organic, as toxic, chemical pesticides contaminate air, water, soil, etc., tea plantations have long been considered environmentally friendly, some tea varieties yield suitable leaves for 30 to 100 years, which reduces the need for replanting and any emissions associated with crop planting, most high-quality teas are hand-plucked opposed to machine usage

Earl grey is…

Animals

Kills: none, earl grey production does not require any animals to be killed

Harms: none, earl grey production does not require any animals to be used

Indirectly kills or harms: none, no animals are indirectly killed or harmed from earl grey production as long as toxic chemicals have not been used, be sure to buy Non-GMO/organic, as pesticides harm and kill wildlife and ecosystems by contaminating soil, water, air and plants that animals eat

Earl grey is…

Laborers

Health and safety: hazardous, limited access to clean water, lack of sanitation, which create health risks, may lead to disease, many workers and their children are malnourished, low immunity to diseases, dangerous exposure to pesticides leads to loss of appetite, numbness in hands, breathing difficulties, reports of starvation deaths

Living conditions: poor, in India, Kenya, Rwanda, Bangladesh, most workers live on tea plantations in decrepit homes, no working toilets, minimal electricity, child trafficking occurs as a result of low wages, children then become slaves, child labor to help meet worker quotas, oppressive conditions intensified by caste system

Wages: low, men work non-leaf-plucking tasks and earn a nearly double hourly wage compared to women, tea pluckers must look for additional work elsewhere to supplement their incomes

Earl grey has…

Where does most earl grey come from?

Kenya is the world’s leading black tea exporter.

China is the world’s leading black tea producer followed by India, Kenya and Sri Lanka. Bergamot is widely cultivated in Southern Italy today.

Is earl grey nutritious?

Earl grey contains antioxidants and caffeine.

Other names for earl grey include bergamot tea, black tea and bergamot orange extract.

earl grey is acidic.

acidic foods and alkaline diet to improve ph levels

Is earl grey tea alkaline or acidic?

Earl grey tea is acidic.

What is the pH level of earl grey tea?

Earl grey tea, and all black tea, has a 4.5 pH level once digested.

When you eat food, it breaks down to an ash residue that can be neutral, acidic or alkaline. Minerals such as potassium, calcium, magnesium, sodium, zinc, silver, copper and iron produce an alkaline ash; whereas sulfur, phosphorus, chlorine and iodine, which are in meat, coffee, dairy and alcohol, leave an acid ash.

Going alkaline easier than ever with this: Acidic and Alkaline Foods List

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earl grey is gluten free.

earl grey benefits include being gluten free

Is earl grey gluten free?

Yes, earl grey is gluten free. Earl grey does not contain gluten. Earl grey is a type of tea, therefore making it a naturally gluten free food. 

While celiac disease may not be as rampant as many marketing trends lead us to believe, you may have a gluten sensitivity…

Celiac and gluten sensitivity symptoms are similar and may include:

There are hundreds of potential symptoms, many of which are also symptoms of other conditions.

Going gluten-free easier than ever with this: Gluten and Gluten Free Foods List

earl grey is not a common food allergen.

earl grey benefits include being safe for most

Is earl grey a common food allergen?

No, earl grey is not a common food allergen. Some people may experience allergic reactions to earl grey but it is relatively rare by comparison.

A group of the eight major allergenic foods, AKA the Big-8, include:

Severe food allergies can be life threatening. Following ingestion of a food allergen, a person with food allergies can experience a severe, life-threatening allergic reaction called anaphylaxis. 

Persons may still be allergic to and have serious reactions to foods other than the eight foods identified by the law.

Be aware of common dietary restrictions and food allergens with this: The Big 8 Most Common Food Allergens List

earl grey has a high water footprint.

water footprints of food and products

Does earl grey have a high or low water footprint?

Earl grey has a relatively high water footprint compared to other foods and beverages.

What is the water footprint of earl grey?

It takes 8,856 liters of water to produce 1 kilogram of black tea / 1,061 gallons of water to produce 1 pound of black tea.

Did you know that water is a finite, non-renewable resource?

How much water does it take to produce an apple? A serving of rice? A steak dinner?

We need to be aware of “water footprints”. That is, the amount of fresh water utilized in the production or supply of goods we consume. As it turns out it takes significantly more water to yield foods that come from animals than foods that come from plants. Imagine how much water a cow needs to consume to generate a piece of beef. Not only how much water a single cow drinks, rather all the water that went into producing the crops that the cow ate.

Find out how much water your food consumes with this: Water Footprints of Foods and Ingredients List

earl grey has a low carbon footprint.

carbon footprints of food and food emissions

Does earl grey have a high or low carbon footprint?

Earl grey has a relatively low carbon footprint compared to other foods and beverages.

What is the carbon footprint of earl grey?

It takes around 1.9 kg CO2e to produce 1 kilogram or 2.2 pounds of tea, a car driving equivalent of 4.5 miles or 7.25 kilometers.

Food not only has a water footprint but also a carbon footprint, known as CO2e, which stands for carbon dioxide equivalent. Since carbon measurements are a bit more difficult to comprehend, it is common to equate CO2e to the distance which a car drives in miles or kilometers.

When calculating carbon emissions, some factors may include…

But that’s not all!

It’s best to keep the following in mind when grocery shopping:

Find out how much carbon your food emits with this: Carbon Footprints of Foods and Ingredients List

earl grey is moderately sustainable.

sustainable shopping, for eco friendly brands and products good for the environment

Overall, is earl grey eco friendly? Is earl grey sustainable?

Earl grey production is moderately sustainable due to its high water footprint. Tea plantations have long been considered environmentally friendly. Some tea varieties yield suitable leaves for 30 to 100 years, which reduces the need for replanting and any emissions associated with crop planting. Most high-quality teas are hand-plucked opposed to machine usage. Be sure to buy non GMO/organic, as toxic, chemical pesticides contaminate air, water, soil, etc. when using regenerative practices.

A 2018 Oxford University study – which is the most comprehensive analysis to date of the damage farming does to the planet – found that ‘avoiding meat and dairy is the single biggest way to reduce your impact on Earth’ as animal farming provides just 18% of calories but takes up 83% of our farmland.

Consuming animal products and byproducts is not environmentally friendly and is one of the worst things for the Earth. Not only is meat production wasteful, it causes enormous amounts of pollution. The industry is one of the biggest causes of climate change.

earl grey is vegan.

earl grey benefits include being vegan

Is earl grey vegan?

Yes, earl grey is vegan. earl grey is a tea made from tea leaves and not an animal product or byproduct, therefore making it a vegan food. 

Animals of factory farms and the livestock industry are suffering. They live in horrific conditions that often include confinement, physical abuse and unnatural environments…so much so that they need to receive antibiotics to keep from getting ill or spreading disease. They’re also injected with growth hormones to become fatter faster and live short lives, being slaughtered as soon as they finish growing and are killed prematurely, well before their natural lifespan.

Because we cannot see for ourselves how these animals live and what they endure does not mean it isn’t happening. The meat, poultry and dairy industries do everything they can to distance us from knowing how our food comes to be in order to keep us in the dark about what we support each time we buy animal derived products and byproducts.

Go vegan for animals!

It’s the best way to help animals and it’s not as difficult as you may think. Speak for animals with your actions, for they cannot speak at all.

Going vegan is easier than ever, at a glance with this: Vegan and Non-Vegan Foods List

earl grey is a product that has labor issues.

labor rights, human rights and workers rights issues

Is earl grey a product with labor concerns?

Yes. At this time there are concerns with tea production. It’s important to stay aware of human rights concerns and worker exploitation that may come with specific brands.

Did you know the single largest employer in the world is agriculture? The labor involved behind each and every product cannot go unrecognized. 

Some known problems include workplace health and safety, child labor, gender inequality, inadequate pay, wage theft and exploitation. Workers can even experience harassment, humiliation and violence and unfair employers often fail to provide laborers with access to shade, drinking water, restrooms and breaks. Consequently, laborers can face nausea, dizziness, heat exhaustion, dehydration and heat stroke -the leading cause of farmworker death! 

Such mistreatment is like modern day slavery. Workers are often afraid to report issues because they fear it will result in losing their jobs or deportation. 

Fair trade organizations fight to ensure better social, environmental and economic standards. 

We can improve people’s lives with foods we eat every day simply by buying products that are certified fair trade. 

This post was all about Earl Grey tea benefits and side effects.

Sources:

World Tea News, A Brief History of Earl Grey

Healthline nutrition: earl grey

Adriane Marie

Grocery Guru, Material Maven, Conscious Consumer Connoisseur. I organize ethical info for us to comprehensively see how purchases impact people, animals and the planet. I hope you find HEALabel helpful! Use it for personal and global improvement and empowerment.

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