Is there anyone who deals with warfarine and drinks tea on a regular
basis ? I have been told by my family doctor to stay away from green tea. Whatever the reason, I guess it applies to oolong as well.
But, how about a black tea ? Should I expect my INR to be significantly
affected by a black tea ? My choice has always been oolong and black.
I have quit drinking all teas and herbal infusions since doctor's
warning, and don't know if it's safe to resume my oolong and black tea
habit. Please advise.
Disclaimer: I am not a doctor, a pharmacist, or a biochemist. I fix radios
for a living. I looked into this a bit when my father was on warfarin but
I am not qualified to give medical advice.
The thing about warfarin is that the difference between too much and too
little is very small. On top of this, warfarin does not spend a lot of
time in the body and cycles out fairly quickly, so the level variations
This being the case, medical technicians spend a -lot- of time fiddling
with warfarin doses. Any change in your activity will change the needed
Now, as far as tea goes, it comes down to:
Ann Pharmacother. 1999 Apr;33(4):426-8. Probable antagonism of warfarin by
green tea. Taylor JR(1), Wilt VM.
And if you look at that paper, it shows that something in green tea that
hasn't been identified may prevent the action of warfarin by some mechanism
that hasn't been identified.
Because none of this stuff has been identified even after 20 years,
doctors can't give any more detailed advice than "avoid green tea."
Maybe whatever it is exists in oolongs also, maybe it doesn't.
There are a bunch of papers indicating that Vitamin K is the compound
causing the problem, but there are also a bunch of people claiming that
it's something else. Tea leaves contain a lot of Vitamin K, and oxidation
processing reduces it, but since it's fat soluble you can't expect that
much extraction into a cup anyway.
So, it really comes down to "this happens and we don't really know why"
which makes it hard to generalize anything.
If it were me, I would drink a limited amount of tea daily, and I would
drink the exact same tea every day at the same time in the same amount
so that if there -is- an effect on the action of warfarin, it would be
a consistent action that could be compensated for by the constant level
adjustment being done by the technicians. But I would talk FIRST to
my doctor and say I was doing this and THEN to the pharmacist who is
doing the dosing and make sure it's okay with them.
And if it were me, I would pick darker teas just in case.
Thank you for response. For Christmas I received a gift, a small tin of black tea from Sikkim. The longer I think about it, the more I drool. I need more candies from my doctor, so I've set an appointment for next week and we'll talk about it.
Yesterday I received doctor's blessing for the black tea. Tried five cups already, and no matter what I do the brew is always astringent.
A suggestion on its packaging says 2.5 grams in 180 ml water, temperature 85-90 centigrades, four minutes. That's exactly what I did, twice, used a digital thermometer to read 88 degrees, and I am getting well astringent tea.
For my third cup temperature decreased to 82 centigrades, astringent again.
My fourth cup was three minutes and thirty seconds, 82 centigrades, the astringency noticeably down, but not much.
My last cup was 3 minutes steeping at 78 centigrades, 2.5 grams in 180ml water. This time the astringency was barely noticeable, just like the flavor and aroma: next to nothing.
I must admit, my experience with Sikkim is zero ! I used to brew Ceylon, dark oolongs, English and Irish Breakfast, Tea No1 and other common blends.
This is Temi Summer Muscatel Black, Sikkim tea. I suspect this is a faux Sikkim tea, or I am doing something terribly wrong and I don't know what is it.
Maybe it was a bad year, just like with wines; last year this wine was heavenly, but this year from the same vineyard it sucks big time. Does it happen with tea ?
Please, any suggestions ?
What happens if you make it like black tea.... just boiling water with a
comparatively short steep?
Sikkim is physically near Darjeeling and in fact most Sikkim teas are sold
as counterfeit Darjeelings, so I'd start by trying to make it like Darjeeling
tea. Although first flush Darjeelings are increasingly green, traditional
fully-withered ones are as black as an assam.
Also... this isn't ctc tea, right? Little balls, instead of visible fragments
of intact leaf?
That's likely very close to a second flush darjeeling.
Yes, but what mostly goes wrong with tea happens after it's been picked.
Poor processing and poor storage (and decade-old tea being sold as new)
are problems in places. Not so much in Sikkim where the enormous demand
for Darjeeling tea means little unsold stock, though.
Thank you for response and a suggestion on steeping it like darjeeling. It isn't ctc, it's almost intact leaf, but it differs from a true, traditional black tea. In this tea leaves are brown, not black, and there is quite a lot of yellow-greenish stuff in it.
I am giving up. By now I've spent almost half of the 100 grams package, tried steeping it in boiling and short of boiling water for 90 seconds at 200-205 F, (or +/- 95 C), 2.5 grams in 180 ml. Mild flavor, pronounced astringency. It also feels like a blend of green and black tea flavors.
I've tried steeping the same quantity of tea in the same amount of water for two, three and four minutes at 160 to 170 F (or 71-77 C). Longer steeping time results in more grassy flavor. Shorter steeping time results in a really weak flavor.
I've tried other combinations with different temperatures and steeping time. It's either well astringent or weak and very weak flavor.
Googling for this tea and darjeeling, in many web sites they are described as they are also known for a delicate astringency. I found nothing delicate in it, although I can tolerate astringency in teas if it's barely noticeable and overshadowed by a sufficiently strong and pleasant flavor. So, maybe it's just me; preferences are different. This tea certainly isn't my cup of tea.