How much does a gallon of tea weigh?

In this brief guide, we will be answering ‘how much does a gallon of tea weigh?’ We will also look into a brief account of tea,  the right way to brew tea, recommended time to brew and some health benefits.  

How much does a gallon of tea weigh?

To determine the weight of a gallon of tea, first, we need to look at the specific gravity of tea. Specific gravity is the ratio between the density of a substance to the density of reference material (mostly water) at specified temperatures.

The density of water at room temperature is around 1. Since tea is mostly water with soluble fragrant compounds, the density of tea is also 1.

Multiply the specific gravity (1) by 8.34 to find the weight of tea per gallon. So, the tea will be;

1 x 8.34 = 8.34

So the weight of tea per gallon will be 8.34 pounds or 3.78 kilograms. But if you add milk to the tea, the weight of the gallon will be different.

Also, keep in mind that the gallons are measured by volume and not weight.

What is tea?

Tea is a fragrant beverage that is produced by steeping freshly boiled water with the young leaves and leaf buds of the tea plant, Camellia sinensis.

Two principal varieties are used, the small-leaved China plant (C. sinensis variety sinensis) and the large-leaved Assam plant (C. sinensis variety assamica). Hybrids of these two varieties are also grown. The leaves may be fermented or left unfermented. The flavor of tea varies by where the tea leaves are harvested and how they are grown and processed. Black tea is the most popular worldwide, followed by green, oolong, and white tea. Herbal teas are not made from the Camellia plant but from dried herbs, spices, flowers, fruit, seeds, roots, or leaves of other plants (1).

How to brew the perfect cup of tea?

Whether you prefer your tea bagged or loose, always start with freshly drawn cold water. If using a teapot, warm the inside first with hot water, then pour it out. And, of course, make sure your mugs, teapot and kettle are clean before using.

With tea bags

Bring water to a boil*, and pour over the tea as soon as it reaches boiling. Over-boiling will cause oxygen to be reduced, making the tea taste ‘flat’. Use 1 teabag per cup and steep the tea for the required time.

With loose tea

Prepare loose tea by placing 1-2 teaspoons of loose tea into a tea strainer, put the strainer into your cup, then pour properly heated water directly over the leaves. If using a teapot, measure 1-2 teaspoons per 8oz of water.

What is the recommended brewing time for tea?

The following chart displays the recommended brew time for different types of tea.

Tea typeBrew time
Black 4 minutes
Chai 5 minutes
Green 2 minutes
Herbal 4 minutes
Red 4 minutes
Oolong 3 minutes
White 1 minute
Cold-brewed iced tea5 minutes

What are the nutritional facts of tea?  

Tea provides the following nutrition, note that the chart is based on 100 grams of tea steeped in water.

100 grams of tea
Calories1 kcal
Total carbohydrates0.3 grams
Total fat0 grams
Total proteins0 grams
Sodium2 milligrams
Potassium37 milligrams
Caffeine20 milligrams

 

Tea is also source of (1): 

  • Caffeine (traditional teas, not herbal)
  • Polyphenols
    • Flavonols – myricetin, quercetin, kaempferol
    • Theaflavins – formed when black tea leaves are oxidized
    • Catechins – found in green tea

What are the health benefits of drinking tea?

Polyphenols or flavonoids are the key components that make tea a healthful drink. These chemical compounds act as antioxidants, which controls the damaging effects of free radicals in the body. Free radicals can alter DNA by stealing its electrons and this mutated DNA can increase LDL cholesterol or alter cell membrane traffic—both harmful to our health. Tea possesses significant antioxidative, anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, anticarcinogenic, antihypertensive, neuroprotective, cholesterol-lowering, and thermogenic properties. Several research investigations, epidemiological studies, and meta-analyses suggest that tea and its bioactive polyphenolic constituents have numerous beneficial effects on health, including the prevention of many diseases, such as cancer, diabetes, arthritis, cardiovascular disease (CVD), stroke, genital warts, and obesity (2).

Observational research has found that tea consumption of 2-3 cups daily is associated with a reduced risk of premature death, heart disease, strokes and type 2 diabetes. 

There may be an increased risk of esophageal and stomach cancers from drinking tea that is too hot (130-140° F). So it is advised to let your tea cool down first and then enjoy it. However, a study showed that drinking 3 – 5 cups of tea per day could even decrease pharyngeal cancer risks, if compared to drinking 2 or less cups (2).. Some research suggests that the protein and possibly the fat in milk may reduce the antioxidant capacity of tea. Flavonoids are known to “deactivate” when binding to proteins so this theory makes scientific sense.

One study analyzed the effects of adding skimmed, semi-skimmed, and whole milk to tea concluded that skimmed milk significantly reduced the antioxidant capacity of tea. Higher-fat milk also reduced the antioxidant capacity of tea, but to a lesser degree. The reduction of the antioxidant capacity is related to the fat content of the milk (3).

Milk or no milk, tea is still a healthy drink to include in your diet. Just make sure you are not adding too much sugar to your drink and enjoying it when it is too hot.

The Benefit of drinking tea is not a consensus. While tea is a low-calorie beverage (if drunk without cream and sugar), there is no definitive evidence that it has greater health benefits, according to Howard Sesso, associate professor in the Department of Epidemiology at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health (1).

What types of tea should be avoided?

While a majority of teas are beneficial for your health, you may want to steer clear of these varieties (4):

  • Detox teas are made for diets that suggest you will quickly lose weight. These teas often come laced with laxatives that can be harmful to your health.
  • Fancy tea lattes and drinks from your favourite chain store. While some of these drinks, such as a green tea latte may appear healthy, they are loaded with sugar.
  • Trendy bubble teas are also loaded with sugar, calories and carbs, and have little to no nutritional value.
  • Herbal teas may potentially trigger allergies. Many herbal teas contain different types of fruits, herbs, spices and flowers that some people are allergic to. If you have allergies, always read the ingredients on the package before you consume a new herbal tea.

Storage

There are five elements to avoid to keep tea as fresh as possible: light, heat, moisture, odor, and air. Tea bags should be stored in their original container or placed in a sealed plastic bin. Loose-leaf teas should be stored in an airtight container. Place all teas in a dark cupboard at a consistent room temperature. Tea tends to absorb odors from food and even other strongly scented teas, so keep them separate. Freezing and refrigerating is not recommended as the moisture introduced can degrade the tea (1).

Conclusion

In this brief guide, we answered ‘how much does a gallon of tea weigh?’ We have also looked into a brief account of tea, the right way to brew tea, recommended time to brew and some health benefits.

Hopefully, you found this guide helpful and informative. If you have any other queries or comments please do let us know.

Citations

  1. Tea. The Nutrition Source. School of Public Health. University of Harvard. 2022.
  2. Hayat, Khizar, et al. Tea and its consumption: benefits and risks. Crit rev food sci nutr, 2015, 55, 939-954.
  3. Ryan, Lisa, and Sébastien Petit. Addition of whole, semiskimmed, and skimmed bovine milk reduces the total antioxidant capacity of black tea. Nutr Res, 2010, 30, 14-20.
  4. The Hidden Health Benefits of Tea. 2022. Penn Medicine.