You may thank the many different spices flavouring chai lattes for their deliciousness. You may require convincing of its usefulness.
There is no shortage of black tea, cinnamon, ginger, cloves, or cardamom, just a few nutritious ingredients. These benefits are typical with chai, even if the special spices vary depending on the blend.
This guide will answer all your Chai Latter-related queries, so let’s get started without further ado!
What is Chai Latte?
A latte is a beverage often associated with the coffee industry, yet it has nothing to do with coffee. Instead, it’s a term for a coffee drink in which espresso is combined with hot milk and topped with foam. On the other hand, a chai latte is made with black tea and a spice mixture instead of espresso, and it’s topped off with steamed milk and foam.
There is no set formula for what goes into a chai latte, although the spices often include ginger, cardamom, cloves, cinnamon, and black pepper.
Although this drink may be a healthy option, many coffee shops use premade chai latte powders that include a variety of spices, powdered milk, tea, and often extra sugar or sweeteners. To save time, this is a common practice.
Are Chai Tea and Chai Latte the Same Thing?
While the components of a chai latte and traditional masala chai are similar, the preparation process differs significantly. Authentic masala chai is made by combining a blend of fresh spices pounded into a powder with milk, a small amount of sugar, and a pinch of salt.
Once the mix is ready, black tea and water are added before serving.
The origins of masala chai can be traced back to India, a popular beverage known for its unique blend of spices. “masala” refers to the spice mixture used in the tea, while “chai” means tea. Unlike the prepackaged powders in some coffee shops, masala chai is made using fresh ingredients and a traditional cooking process used for generations.
Chai tea is available in two forms: loose leaves or tea bags. Both states have a spiced tea flavour you can enjoy with or without milk after steeping in hot water, similar to regular black tea.
Now, let’s discuss the health aspects of the Chai Latte.
Is Chai Latte Healthy?
When examining the healthfulness of chai lattes, there are many things to consider, so let’s get started.
What Is the Calorie Content of a Chai Latte?
It will vary based on where the chai latte is manufactured, the size of the portion, and most crucially, how much sugar is in the beverage, but to provide you with guidance from some of the significant chains.
Starbucks – UK
With skim milk, a short Classic Chai Tea Latte has 103 calories; this number rises to 131 with whole milk.
A Venti size increase will add 271 calories for the version with skim milk and 355 calories for the performance with whole milk.
Starbucks – US
A short Chai Latte has 120 calories, roughly speaking, according to Starbucks US’s nutrition guide, which only modifies the calories per drink size, not the type of milk.
If you choose a Venti, the calories increase to 310.
Costa Coffee – UK
The “drink in” size of a small Chai Latte has 113 calories when made with skim milk; this number rises to 190 when made with whole milk.
This rises to 211 for the version with skim milk and 364 for the version with whole milk if you upgrade to big (both Drink in)
Cafe Nero – UK
Only one size is available, with 232 calories in semi-skimmed milk and 295 in skimmed milk.
Gloria Jeans – Australia
There are 210 calories in a small Chai Tea Latte and 389 in a large.
The handmade chai latte in this recipe contains about 100 calories.
What Percentage of Sugar Is in a Chai Latte?
In reality, the UK organisation Action on Sugar examined the sugar content of a few chai latte drinks from popular chains in 2019 and discovered that the worst offender contained 54.5g of sugar or roughly 14 teaspoons.
The good news is that some UK corporations have reduced their sugar level since then, so today, you’re looking at more of the following…
Starbucks UK: In Starbucks UK, a small chai latte contains 21g of sugar (the amount changes slightly depending on the type of milk, but not significantly; if you select oat milk, it is 27g).
On the other hand, a Venti includes 55g of sugar (except for oat milk, where the amount jumps to an astounding 72g!)
The alternative from Cafe Nero, which is made with semi-skimmed milk, contains 25.5g of sugar.
In Australia, a small Gloria Jeans chai latte has 7.2g of sugar, while a large one has 8.2g.
In short, there are 53 grams of sugar from Starbucks US and a large.
Individual cafes will undoubtedly have varying amounts of sugar based on how they prepare their drinks.
The NHS recommends consuming at most 30g of free sugars (the NHS’s term for added sugars) per day to give you an idea of what all that entails. Nonetheless, some sugar in the beverages will come from the milk.
Is there caffeine in the chai latte?
Black tea contains about 50 mg of caffeine per cup, whereas chai and chai lattes use a generally stronger tea.
Generally, the amount of caffeine in your cup will depend on how strong the tea is (various leaves contain varied amounts) and how long you brew it.
Starbucks’ Short Classic Chai Tea Latte has 46mg of caffeine. The Classic Chai Latte in Venti form has 115mg. The rest of the sizes are all in between!
Most other businesses estimate that each eight fl oz cup of their chai lattes contains between 40 and 50 milligrams of caffeine.
Do The Spices In Chai Latte Have Any Health Benefits?
Most spices contain antioxidants, which aid in the body’s ability to combat harmful substances known as free radicals. Yet some of the highest levels are found in cloves used to make chai lattes.
In addition, ginger is an anti-inflammatory, and black pepper helps digestion. Only 1g of cinnamon has been shown to help lower blood sugar levels and may benefit heart health and brain function.
Chai tea may have some health benefits due to its herbs, but it is not a medicine since you only drink a minimal amount in a chai latte.
Read the list below to learn more about the advantages of using Chai tea lattes in your daily routine:
1. It Keeps You Feeling Energized.
Drinking a Chai tea latte is the best way to start the day. You may stay active and stimulated by drinking this tea because it contains caffeine and black tea leaves, which are bodily stimulants.
The type and quantity of black teas used determine the caffeine content of your beverage.
2. It Facilitates Better Digestion.
Chai tea latte is an excellent beverage for maintaining a healthy stomach since it includes spices and herbs that aid the digestive system.
Ginger is one of the spices in chai tea lattes, and it helps with normal digestion by promoting blood circulation and supplying oxygen to your organs. Black pepper, cinnamon and cardamom are other spices that guard against conditions including iron shortage, liver illness, and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). Black tea leaves also aid in boosting metabolism and reducing bloating.
3. It Eases Nauseousness
Ginger is an ingredient in chai tea lattes that helps with nausea and other common nausea-related conditions. In addition, you may treat stomach discomfort brought on by sickness, and an upset stomach can be soothed using the biological constituents of ginger known as gingerol and shogaol.
4. It Might Aid in Lowering Blood Sugar Levels.
The cinnamon and ginger reduce your insulin resistance in Chai tea lattes, which helps to enhance and regulate your blood sugar levels.
5. It Relieves Aches and Pains.
Chai tea lattes are good in reducing typical aches and pains due to their components’ anti-inflammatory qualities.
Ginger lowers inflammation, cures migraines and headaches, and enhances blood flow. As toothaches are being treated, the cloves in Chai tea lattes aid.
6. It Could Maintain Heart Health.
Black tea and cinnamon in chai tea lattes may help to decrease blood pressure and cholesterol.
Cinnamon includes substances that lower blood sugar, treat diabetes, and save the heart from illness.
7. It Facilitates Weight Loss.
Milk, an excellent protein source, is a chai tea lattes component. By consuming this latte, you may control your appetite and avoid overeating later in the day.
Black teas, meanwhile, encourage the breakdown of fat and limit the absorption of calories. Moreover, the black pepper in chai tea lattes prevents the buildup of body fat.
8. It Reduces Your Chance of Developing Cancer.
Cardamom, cinnamon, and ginger are some spices used in Chai tea lattes, including antioxidants and phytochemicals. They have a reputation for preventing cancer.
9. It Boosts Your Metabolism and Prevents Cold
The natural spices in Chai tea lattes activate digestive and pancreatic enzymes, which help break down fat and absorb oxygen. Ginger is another ingredient in chai tea, which increases metabolism and strengthens the immune system.
10. It Prevents Tumor Growth
Cloves are the critical components of Chai tea lattes with the most significant antioxidant content. They aid in reducing tumour growth because of their antiviral, antibacterial, and anti-cancer characteristics.
11. It Has Less Caffeine
Chai tea is a healthier substitute for coffee since it has less caffeine. The nice thing about this beverage is that you may benefit from its good health while still enjoying its delicious flavour.
Final Verdict: Is Chai Latte Good for You?
Let’s begin with the advantages.
The major components in chai lattes all have positive health effects.
In addition to the health advantages of tea, milk provides minerals like calcium, and the spices in chai lattes, have all been scientifically established to have health benefits.
The chai lattes from huge chain coffee shops, especially the larger quantities, include too much glucose to be considered wholly healthy.
NB: If you’re looking for Starbucks options with fewer calories, check out our guide to all the most unique opportunities in Starbucks in the US here. If you live in the UK, you can discover your guide to Starbucks calories here.
How to Choose a Healthier Chai Latte?
If you can reduce the sugar you use or switch to a healthier sweetener like stevia, homemade chai lattes may be healthful.
If you wish to use a pre-made powder, try to choose a sugar-free kind (some suggestions are below).
Use the smallest serving size available if you’re sipping your chai latte away from home to reduce calories and sugar rapidly.
You might also use skimmed or semi-skimmed milk to minimise calories and fat. Although skimmed milk produces more foam than total fat, the latte will taste less creamy and more watery if you use it.
If you prefer an alternative to milk, oat milk has the most sugar and almond milk the least.
Where to Buy Healthier Chai Latte Powder
Although wide varieties include sugar, sugar-free chai latte powders are readily available. It might be challenging to track down sugar-free latte powder in the UK. Drink Me no longer offers one such product.
Compared to the 9.7g of sugar in their standard spiced latte powder, the 9.1g in their vegan version is a modest improvement. The unsweetened masala chai powder from Royal Chai is an option for individuals watching their sugar intake.
Oregon Chai, an American company, sells a sugar-free chai tea latte concentrate sweetened with Splenda. The product is available for purchase and home delivery at Walmart and Kroger. However, a low-sugar chai tea option is available from Arkadia in Australia, which can be purchased from Woolworths and enjoyed as either chai tea or chai latte.
Now that we can stop arguing over whether or not chai lattes are healthy, we can focus on the possible health advantages of chai tea.
Is Chai Tea Healthy?
It has been mentioned earlier that there are some differences between chai tea and chai latte, with chai tea generally considered a healthier option than a chai latte. Here are some key points to keep in mind:
Calories in Chai Tea
A freshly brewed chai tea mix produced only with water and no sugar has 0 calories.
As a result, any calories will come from the milk; a serving size of 250 ml prepared with skim milk would have roughly 100 calories. With whole milk, the same serving size would have about 150 calories.
Notice that the recipe below only recommends using whole milk because it enhances the flavour of the spices.
How Much Sugar is in Chai Tea?
Most fresh chai teas won’t have much sugar; this family’s masala chai recipe contains 1-2 teaspoons per cup or 16–32 calories.
But, since different cafés may utilise other ingredients, you can discover that some use more sugar, honey, or maple syrup to sweeten their food.
If you’re trying to limit your sugar intake, ask whether you may serve the sweetener separately.
Does Chai Tea Contain Caffeine?
Traditional morning beverages that can help you wake up include tea and coffee. Nonetheless, even a strong chai tea beverage has less caffeine than coffee. Eight ounces of coffee contain 120 milligrams of caffeine, compared to 60 mg in a standard cup of black chai tea.
Moreover, tea provides a more sustained energy boost than coffee, which starts stronger but climbs and declines more quickly. When the caffeine wears off from this spike, it results in unpleasant side effects, including jitters and crashes.
Since chai tea contains less caffeine and is absorbed by our systems more slowly, adverse effects of that nature will be less noticeable if you drink it.
Is Chai Tea Good for Weight Loss?
There is some evidence that regular black tea consumption may impact weight. Doing so changes the composition of the bacteria in your stomach, which might affect how you process calories.
Also, it has been demonstrated that those who include dairy in their calorie-restricted diets lose more weight than those who do not.
Moreover, cinnamon decreases blood sugar levels, which may aid with weight management.
But, this does not imply drinking chai tea will help you lose weight, especially if you add sugar. The calories in chai tea will close any calorie shortfall you may establish via exercise or other calorie-cutting measures.
In the black tea trial, participants drank three cups daily, with no calories if no milk was added and roughly 50 calories if only a splash of milk was added. Even with a more favourable gut bacterial mix, three cups of traditionally prepared chai tea will have 300–450 calories, which is a lot of calories to burn.
Likewise, the dairy trial had calorie-restricted individuals.
In other words, adding chai coffee to your diet won’t make you lose weight (and drinking enormous, sugary green tea lattes won’t make you lose weight, either!).
Is Vanilla Chai Tea Healthy?
Although a few other ingredients are available for chai tea and chai tea lattes, vanilla is the most popular.
Vanilla syrup is typically used to make vanilla chai lattes, enhancing the beverage’s sugar and calorie content.
If you enjoy the flavour combination, get a freshly brewed Chai Tea with vanilla.
There is a Chai Tea with French Vanilla from Twinings that will work.
The information presented has covered the health benefits of chai tea in detail. For those who rarely visit cafes, continuing to enjoy chai tea latte as is might be acceptable. However, regular chai tea lattes consumers may consider the recommendations to reduce their intake of sugar and calories for a healthier option.