When you drink milk tea every day, this is what happens to your body

Drinking milk tea is an international custom that has quickly become a popular way to make tea time trendy in the United States. Of course, when you hear the word "tea" your brain probably conjures up images of that quintessential tea cup, a tea kettle on the stove, and maybe a classic novel. Milk tea is a bit different, though. There are endless ways to make the exact mixture of your dreams — from choosing the type of tea to mix with the milk to adding in various sugars, sweet syrups, sliced up fruits, boba or tapioca pearls. The sky's the limit.

While this yummy treat holds many benefits that will have your tastebuds craving more each day, there are also some disadvantages to enjoying this hot or cold creative concoction on a regular basis. Read on to find out what happens to your body when you drink milk tea every day. Pinkies up!

Drinking milk tea instead of regular tea every day can prevent teeth stains

Regularly enjoying a cup of tea can have more of an impact on your pearly whites than just bringing a smile to your face. "Tea causes teeth to stain much worse than coffee," New York University dentistry professor Mark S. Wolff, told WebMD. Unfortunately, because your tooth enamel changes over time, staining will only get worse if you enjoy tea every day, And the darker your tea, the darker your teeth stains will be, according to City Dentists. Because of this, it seems like the best solution should just be to abstain to avoid the stain.

However, a 2014 study published in the International Journal of Dental Hygiene found that adding milk to tea can help maintain a whiter smile. When combined, casein (a chemical found in milk) chemically binds to the stain-causing chemicals in tea and puts a stop to staining, City Dentists explained. In fact, milk tea has a "similar order of magnitude that can be obtained by vital bleaching treatments" the study concluded. So if you're looking for an affordable way to keep tea stains at bay, try adding a splash of milk each day.

Drinking milk tea too close to bedtime every day can keep you up at night

While many of us turn to tea to every day to keep from succumbing to the dreaded mid-day slump, there's a reason we shouldn't be enjoying this beverage close to bedtime. Since milk tea is often made with black tea, which contains about 47 milligrams of caffeine, you may have some trouble falling asleep.

Within 15 minutes of drinking milk tea, its caffeine has already entered your bloodstream and has taken effect on elevating your energy levels. If enjoyed right before bed, don't expect to get any sleep right away. From there, it takes roughly six hours for just half of the caffeine consumed to exit your system, the National Sleep Foundation explained. For many of us, that's a large chunk of our necessary nighttime snooze. So while a warm cup of milk tea may seem relaxing each evening, it can actually make you quite restless.

Drinking milk tea every day won't affect your stomach in the same way as regular tea

Drinking too much tea every day isn't such a good idea for some people. That's because tea contains tannins, a compound found in tea leaves that is extremely acidic. When consumed on an empty stomach or in excess, tannin can screw up your stomach tissue and can leave your belly in pain. According to Healthline, this can also come with some unsettling nausea that can ruin just about anybody's day.  

Unfortunately, there's not a specific amount of tea to avoid drinking each day in order to stop you from feeling awful. Everyone's stomachs are sensitive to and set off by different things, but there is one commonality that can cure a serious stomach ache: milk. When drinking it with your tea, the tannins found in the tea chemically combines with compounds found in milk, which keeps it from combining with your stomach lining, Healthline revealed. If you love tea but can't stomach the belly ache, drinking milk tea is the way to go.

Drinking milk tea every day could hurt your weight loss goals

Not only does tea have very few calories, it also contains chemicals that are known for increasing the amount of energy you use. It seems like it would be a refreshing way to lose some extra weight, right? One cup of black tea, for example, contains about two calories and if shedding pounds is as simple as simply enjoying tea time, then why not? While this low-calorie beverage can indeed help you burn calories, adding milk to it can potentially put a barreling halt to this benefit, according to WebMD.  

According to studies done by the Tea Research Association in India, when milk is combined with tea, proteins in the milk bond together with the compounds in tea that are responsible for weight loss. When this happens, the effects on your metabolism are neutralized and, therefore, provide no added benefit to your weight loss goals, explained The Sydney Morning Herald. Because of this, "it is always advised to take tea without milk," researcher Dr. Devajit Borthakur told The Telegraph. If cutting calories is on your mind, it's best to give up drinking milk tea every day.

You might experience anxiety-like symptoms if you drink milk tea every day

Curling up with a cup of milk tea every day may seem like a relaxing way to end each day, but it turns out that this delicious drink can actually trigger symptoms of anxiety when enjoyed in excess. According to Harvard Medical School, consuming caffeine like that contained in tea can make you jittery and cause your body to react in much the same way it would if you were dealing with anxiety. You might experience an increased heart rate, suddenly become nervous, or feel restless, according to Healthline.

Since caffeine is also a stimulant, it triggers the body's fight or flight response — a biological reaction to a perceived harmful situation — which many people who experience anxiety tend to encounter quite often. However, that's not all.

"High levels of caffeine can not only increase anxiety and nervousness, but can also decrease the production of the feel-good chemical serotonin in the body, causing a depressed mood," Erin Palinski-Wade, a registered dietitian, explained to Healthline. While milk tea may make your taste buds happy, it won't put you in such a happy mood.

Drinking milk tea every day can help you strengthen your bones

While it's well known that drinking milk every day can help strengthen your bones, milk tea is actually no different. According to a study published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition in 2000, older women who regularly drank tea had higher bone mineral density than those who didn't drink any tea at all.

Researchers believe that flavonoids found in tea helped contribute to the higher density of their bones. They concluded that regularly drinking tea could possibly help to protect older women from developing fragile bones and, more importantly, osteoporosis.

What's even better is that their research found that adding a splash of milk to your tea increased the bone-strengthening benefit, especially when it came to helping out your hips. It sounds like, if you're trying to build on your salsa dancing — or just want to build up or maintain your healthy bones — drinking milk tea each day can help.

Drinking milk tea every day could lead to type 2 diabetes

If you're enjoying milk tea every day, it's wise to worry about how much sugar you're adding to your diet. Depending on which concoction you choose, it may be a lot. "You don't want that much sugar in your body every single day," Scott Chan, program manager at the Asian and Pacific Islander Obesity Prevention Alliance (APIOPA), told KABC. "It has a lot of different impacts on your health." Consuming too much sugar can cause a spike in your blood sugar, potentially leading to type 2 diabetes.

Boba tea — a very popular milk tea with added sweetener — contains 90 grams of sugar in one 12-ounce cup, KABC reported. The Health Promotion Board (via Shape) recommends that people consume no more than 40 to 55 grams of sugar each day — so even six ounces of milk could put you over your daily limit.

Luckily, there are many kinds of non-dairy milk teas, so avoiding this issue can be as easy as cutting back on the ingredients you're adding to your cup. If you're worried about your sugar intake, 86 those sweeteners, tapioca pearls, syrups, or other flavorings.

Cavities can crop up if you drink milk tea every day

Because of all the sugar that can be added to some kinds of milk teas, it would only make sense that it could cause cavities. However, it's not just this sugary sweet goodness alone that will have the dentist reaching for his drill. Turns out, it's not the amount of milk tea you drink each day that will stir up trouble for your teeth. Instead, it matters how long you spend drinking it.

If you find yourself leisurely enjoying this delicious drink while running errands over the course of an afternoon, that could cause a problem for cavities. When you drink milk tea over a longer period of time, your teeth are taking a constant hit of sugar that will encompass your enamel and slowly dissolve your teeth. It's recommended, instead, to drink your milk tea with a meal. If you opt to enjoy this sweet treat as dessert, that's fine too, as long as it's consumed within 30 minutes of mealtime, Keith Leong, a United Dental Surgery dentist, advised when speaking to Business Insider.

Drinking milk tea every day may not be great for your heart

If your heart yearns for tea every day, here's some good news: It turns out that tea is indeed good for the health of that very vital organ. Black tea has been shown to significantly boost your arteries' ability to pump blood throughout your body, keeping your cardiovascular system — and, therefore, your heart — in tip top shape. However, if you're looking to gain this benefit from drinking milk tea, you'd better try another beverage.

A study published in the European Heart Journal in 2007 discovered that adding milk to tea completely blocks this effect. Researchers found that the chemicals in tea responsible for helping out your heart actually decreased when they were combined with the proteins in milk. "While the addition of milk may improve its taste, it may also lower its health-protective properties," molecular biologist and researcher Mario Lorenz concluded. The next time you're craving some tea to soothe the soul, it'd be best to leave out the milk.

Drinking milk tea first thing every day isn't great for your metabolism

When waking up each morning, it's probably not the best idea to reach for a cup of milk tea. "Don't start your day with something acidic like tea or coffee with sugar and milk," fitness expert Mini Shastri told The Times of India. According to the expert, starting your day with tea can wreak havoc on your metabolism.

The caffeine in milk tea stimulates stomach acids for digestion that can screw up your system for mealtimes throughout the day. Instead, each morning you should "pick up that glass of fresh juice or even better a bowl of fruits or simply sip some warm water to kick-start your system," celebrity nutritionist Pooja Makhija recommended to NDTV Food. This gets your stomach settled and ready to go for delicious food ahead. Then you can enjoy your daily cup of milk tea, should you so desire.

You may experience bloating if you drink milk tea every day

Unbearable bloating is something you'll undoubtedly want to avoid. Due to the dairy found in milk tea, though, bloating may be an inevitable side effect as it can inflame some people's digestive tracts. "Dairy is delicious," Kelly Schmidt, registered dietitian, told Women's Health. "But many people are intolerant to [its] whey, lactose, and casein." Surprisingly, 75 percent of people across the world are unable to properly break down lactose when consuming milk or any other type of dairy product, according to Healthline.

If you have a sensitive stomach, drinking milk tea every day may just not be the whey for you. Luckily, there are many kinds of milk available to hide the bitter taste of black tea. If you find that bloating is brought on by your daily habit of drinking milk tea, try adding soy, almond, or coconut milk instead for a delicious new take on the classic drink.

Drinking milk tea every day might improve your memory

You may never forget to drink milk tea ever again. That's because it's been proven that drinking tea, with or without milk, actually improves your memory. A study published in Phytotherapy Research in 2004 discovered that enzymes found in both black and green teas are slowed down after people enjoy this delicious drink. These enzymes are responsible for breaking down a neurotransmitter in the brain that makes people forgetful and, interestingly, is also seen in excess in Alzheimer's patients.

"Although there is no cure for Alzheimer's, tea could potentially be another weapon in the armoury which is used to treat this disease and slow down its development," the study's lead researcher, Dr. Ed Okello, noted. What's even more interesting is that drinking green tea was found to have this effect for an entire week, while black tea's effects last all day long. The next time you're making some milk tea, you'll remember this!

You may experience more breakouts if you drink milk tea every day

Acne is probably not something you'd want to show off to the world so if you're looking for a way to rid your skin of it, you could take a closer look at your diet. If drinking milk tea is a part of your daily routine, you may want to start there. That's because milk has been found to cause acne.

Multiple studies have shown that the more dairy you include in your daily diet, the more prone you are to clogged pores. However, the type of milk you choose to use in your tea can have different effects on your skin. A 2005 study published in the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology and another from 2016 found that drinking skim milk, in particular, will make your skin more at risk for acne. So while you're trying to decide on the type of tea to add to your milk tea, you may just want to think twice about the kind of milk you enjoy with it too.

You could become addicted to drinking milk tea every day

There may be a very good reason that you're craving milk tea every day — aside from the fact that it's so good. Because of the caffeine that is contained in each cup, forming an unhealthy dependence on milk tea could become a very real thing very quickly. According to the Addiction Center, consuming caffeine on a daily basis can create a dependence. When going without it for a day, you may experience symptoms of withdrawal, such as tiredness, headaches, and muscle pain, the National Sleep Foundation revealed.

Whenever you drink a caffeinated beverage, the caffeine is absorbed through the intestines and enters your bloodstream and, because of its chemical makeup, can make its way directly to the brain. By drinking caffeine on a regular basis, the chemistry and even the "physical characteristics" of your brain can be altered, according to the Addiction Center.

With 80 percent of Americans consuming enough caffeine on a daily basis to induce a substantial change on their brain structure, researchers have deemed it "the most widely used psychoactive substance in the world." It's something to think about before picking up a daily milk tea drinking habit, for sure.