Last update Feb. 2, 2022

White Tea

Likely Compatibility

Fairly safe. Mild or unlikely adverse effects. Compatible under certain circumstances. Follow-up recommended. Read Commentary.

Leaves are used. Components are xanthines like caffeine (50 a 80 mg per cup of black tea, half this amount for green tea and less for white tea), theophylline, theobromine; tannins, catechins (Arts 2000), flavonoids (quercetin) Attributed properties: Psycho-stimulant, vasoconstrictor, diuretic, bronchodilator, antioxidant. (, Lopez 2012, Serafini 1996)

At latest update, relevant published data on excretion into breast milk were not found.

Data on excretion in the milk is available since caffeine, quercetin and epicatechin were measured into the breast milk after consumption of plant-based foods. (Lu 2021, Nalewajko 2020, Calvaresi 2016)

In some cultures it is used as a galactogogue (Ali 2020). There is not scientific proof on its effectiveness as a galactagogue (increment of milk production) nor any anti-oxidant property was found in the milk. (Kayiran 2013)

The use of tea bags was not found to be more effective for nipple pain relief than other products for local use as watwe hot compresses, breast milk, lanolin, etc. (Morland 2005, Lavergne 1997, Buchko 1994, Schrob 1992, Gans 1958) 

Because a high caffeine consumption as that of 4 to 5 cups of tea a day (> 300 mg of caffeine) may induce nervousness and irritability in the infant.

It is recommended a minimal consumption of tea during pregnancy and breastfeeding as well as avoid certain traditional metallic teapots, since contamination with lead has frequently been found, as well as other toxins like cadmium, aluminum, magnesium and polibromodifenil éteres (PBDE), along with liver failure after consumption of green tea with slimming purposes. (Schwalfenberg 2013, Patel 2013, Bolle 2011, Kim 2011, Kirchgatterer 2005, Jin 2005, Starska 1993) 

Precautions when taking plant preparations (Anderson 2017, Powers 2015, Posadzki 2013, Efferth 2011, Kopec 1999, Hsu 1995):

  • Make sure they are from a reliable source: poisonings have occurred due to confusion of one plant with another with toxic properties (Hsu 1995), poisonings due to containing heavy metals extracted from the soil, and food poisoning due to contamination with bacteria or fungi. (Anderson 2017)
  • Do not take in excess; follow the recommendations of expert phytotherapy professionals. “Natural” products are not good in any quantity: plants contain active substances from which much of our traditional pharmacopoeia has been obtained and can cause poisoning or act as endocrine disruptors if consumed in quantity or for an exaggerated time because they contain phytoestrogens. (Powers 2015, Zava 1998)


See below the information of this related product:

  • Caffeine (Fairly safe. Mild or unlikely adverse effects. Compatible under certain circumstances. Follow-up recommended. Read Commentary.)

Suggestions made at e-lactancia are done by APILAM team of health professionals, and are based on updated scientific publications. It is not intended to replace the relationship you have with your doctor but to compound it. The pharmaceutical industry contraindicates breastfeeding, mistakenly and without scientific reasons, in most of the drug data sheets.

Jose Maria Paricio, Founder & President of APILAM/e-Lactancia

Your contribution is essential for this service to continue to exist. We need the generosity of people like you who believe in the benefits of breastfeeding.

Thank you for helping to protect and promote breastfeeding.

José María Paricio, founder of e-lactancia.

Other names

White Tea is also known as Tea. Here it is a list of alternative known names::

White Tea in other languages or writings:


Main tradenames from several countries containing White Tea in its composition:


  1. Lu Z, Chan YT, Lo KK, Wong VW, Ng YF, Li SY, Ho WW, Wong MS, Zhao D. Levels of polyphenols and phenolic metabolites in breast milk and their association with plant-based food intake in Hong Kong lactating women. Food Funct. 2021 Dec 13;12(24):12683-12695. Abstract
  2. Nalewajko-Sieliwoniuk E, Hryniewicka M, Jankowska D, Kojło A, Kamianowska M, Szczepański M. Dispersive liquid-liquid microextraction coupled to liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry for the determination of phenolic compounds in human milk. Food Chem. 2020 Oct 15;327:126996. Abstract
  3. Ali Z, Bukari M, Mwinisonaam A, Abdul-Rahaman AL, Abizari AR. Special foods and local herbs used to enhance breastmilk production in Ghana: rate of use and beliefs of efficacy. Int Breastfeed J. 2020 Nov 16;15(1):96. Abstract Full text (link to original source)
  4. Anderson PO. Herbal Use During Breastfeeding. Breastfeed Med. 2017 Abstract
  5. Calvaresi V, Escuder D, Minutillo A, Bastons-Compta A, García-Algar O, Pallás Alonso CR, Pacifici R, Pichini S. Transfer of Nicotine, Cotinine and Caffeine Into Breast Milk in a Smoker Mother Consuming Caffeinated Drinks. J Anal Toxicol. 2016 Jul;40(6):473-7. Abstract
  6. Powers CN, Setzer WN. A molecular docking study of phytochemical estrogen mimics from dietary herbal supplements. In Silico Pharmacol. 2015 Mar 22;3:4. Abstract Full text (link to original source) Full text (in our servers)
  7. Schwalfenberg G, Genuis SJ, Rodushkin I. The benefits and risks of consuming brewed tea: beware of toxic element contamination. J Toxicol. 2013 Abstract Full text (link to original source) Full text (in our servers)
  8. Kayiran SM, Ince DA, Aldemir D, Gurakan B. Investigating the effect of black tea consumption during pregnancy on the oxidant/antioxidant status of breastmilk. Breastfeed Med. 2013 Abstract
  9. Posadzki P, Watson L, Ernst E. Contamination and adulteration of herbal medicinal products (HMPs): an overview of systematic reviews. Eur J Clin Pharmacol. 2013 Abstract
  10. Posadzki P, Watson LK, Ernst E. Adverse effects of herbal medicines: an overview of systematic reviews. Clin Med (Lond). 2013 Abstract Full text (link to original source)
  11. Patel SS, Beer S, Kearney DL, Phillips G, Carter BA. Green tea extract: a potential cause of acute liver failure. World J Gastroenterol. 2013 Abstract Full text (link to original source) Full text (in our servers)
  12. López-Regueiro S, Ramos Sáiz EM, López-Picado A, Burgos-Alonso N, Arana-Salaberría, A. Fitoterapia como coadyuvante en el tratamiento de la obesidad. Farmacéuticos Comunitarios 2012; 4(4): 166-174 2012 Full text (link to original source) Full text (in our servers)
  13. Kim UJ, Lee IS, Kim HS, Oh JE. Monitoring of PBDEs concentration in umbilical cord blood and breast milk from Korean population and estimating the effects of various parameters on accumulation in humans. Chemosphere. 2011 Abstract
  14. Efferth T, Kaina B. Toxicities by herbal medicines with emphasis to traditional Chinese medicine. Curr Drug Metab. 2011 Abstract
  15. Bolle F, Brian W, Petit D, Boutakhrit K, Feraille G, Van Loco J. Tea brewed in traditional metallic teapots as a significant source of lead, nickel and other chemical elements. Food Addit Contam Part A Chem Anal Control Expo Risk Assess. 2011 Abstract
  16. Jin CW, He YF, Zhang K, Zhou GD, Shi JL, Zheng SJ. Lead contamination in tea leaves and non-edaphic factors affecting it. Chemosphere. 2005 Abstract
  17. Kirchgatterer A, Rammer M, Knoflach P. [Weight loss, abdominal pain and anemia after a holiday abroad--case report of lead poisoning]. Dtsch Med Wochenschr. 2005 Abstract
  18. Morland-Schultz K, Hill PD. Prevention of and therapies for nipple pain: a systematic review. J Obstet Gynecol Neonatal Nurs. 2005 Jul-Aug;34(4):428-37. Review. Abstract
  19. Arts IC, van De Putte B, Hollman PC. Catechin contents of foods commonly consumed in The Netherlands. 2. Tea, wine, fruit juices, and chocolate milk. J Agric Food Chem. 2000 Abstract
  20. Kopec K. Herbal medications and breastfeeding. J Hum Lact. 1999 Jun;15(2):157-61. Review. No abstract available. Abstract
  21. Zava DT, Dollbaum CM, Blen M. Estrogen and progestin bioactivity of foods, herbs, and spices. Proc Soc Exp Biol Med. 1998 Abstract
  22. Lavergne NA. Does application of tea bags to sore nipples while breastfeeding provide effective relief? J Obstet Gynecol Neonatal Nurs. 1997 Abstract
  23. Serafini M, Ghiselli A, Ferro-Luzzi A. In vivo antioxidant effect of green and black tea in man. Eur J Clin Nutr. 1996 Abstract
  24. Hsu CK, Leo P, Shastry D, Meggs W, Weisman R, Hoffman RS. Anticholinergic poisoning associated with herbal tea. Arch Intern Med. 1995 Abstract
  25. Buchko BL, Pugh LC, Bishop BA, Cochran JF, Smith LR, Lerew DJ. Comfort measures in breastfeeding, primiparous women. J Obstet Gynecol Neonatal Nurs. 1994 Abstract
  26. Starska K. [Aluminum in food]. Rocz Panstw Zakl Hig. 1993 Abstract
  27. Schrob M. Tea bags and sore nipples. J Hum Lact. 1992 Abstract
  28. Opinya GN, Bwibo N, Valderhaug J, Birkeland JM, Lökken P. Intake of fluoride and excretion in mothers' milk in a high fluoride (9 ppm) area in Kenya. Eur J Clin Nutr. 1991 Abstract
  29. GANS B. Breast and nipple pain in early stages of lactation. Br Med J. 1958 Oct 4;2(5100):830-2. No abstract available. Abstract Full text (link to original source) Full text (in our servers)

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