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Poppy Seed Tea

2 Easy Ways to Make Poppy Seed Tea and a Peek at its Side Effects

Why do people drink poppy seed tea? What are its effects and side effects on the body? How can it be made and consumed? Find all this information, here.
Puja Lalwani
Last Updated: Mar 22, 2018
Since ancient times, people have used poppy seeds for its highly sedative and relaxing effect, along with its ability to function as a pain-killer. It is for this effect that it is also consumed as poppy seed tea. It is also believed to have anti-diarrheal properties. The psychoactive effects of this tea, though temporarily relaxing, can lead to an addiction which can turn lethal over time. Poppy seeds are the only legally available drug in the United States. All other parts of this plant are strictly banned. Sometimes, you may consume poppy seed tea as a sedative, and if you suffer from the restless leg syndrome. However, do so in extremely limited amounts, as the effects of an overdose are highly dangerous. Also, the source you purchase poppy seeds from should be highly reliable, as some varieties may have a high potency of opiates and may be harmful particularly for novices.
How to Make Poppy Seed Tea

The tea can be made in two ways: with hot water, and cold water. An ideal dosage of poppy seed tea for a novice is 200 grams. This dosage also depends on your tolerance. It is best to begin with a very small amount in order to prevent any side effects. Once your tolerance develops, you may gradually increase the dosage. Maintain it at a maximum of 700 grams. An overdose or a dosage of 1300 grams is considered lethal! Another thing to keep in mind is that the strength of the poppy seeds differs, depending on the variety you are using. The strength of poppy seeds can be determined by the color and bitterness (poppy seed tea is highly bitter) of the tea. If the tea is very dark, you can be sure that the strength of the tea is also high. Experts suggest washing poppy seeds thoroughly before use to reduce their strength and overall sedative effect.
Hot Water Extraction Cold Water Extraction
  1. Take a cup of plain water, and boil it.
  2. Take the water off the heat, and add a few drops of lemon juice to acidify the water.
  3. Add in the recommended amount of poppy seeds into it.
  4. Allow the seeds to remain in the water for about 20 minutes.
  5. Strain the seeds from the water.
  6. Allow the water to cool further.
  7. It is now ready to be consumed.
  1. Take a cup of cold water, and add a few drops of lemon juice to acidify the water.
  2. Add in the recommended amount of poppy seeds into it.
  3. Allow the seeds to remain in the water for a few hours.
  4. Keep shaking the liquid occasionally.
  5. Strain the seeds from the water.
  6. The tea is now ready to be consumed.

Poppy seed tea begins to affect the mind and body within a span of 30 minutes, and its effect can last for almost 8 hours. It has a severely bitter taste, which is why people are known to add other flavoring agents to the tea. To keep the effect of the tea mild, reduce the amount of time the seeds are soaked in the water.
Side Effects

The different side effects of poppy seed tea depend on the ability of a person to tolerate the opiate levels in poppy seeds.
  • As is the case with the consumption of an opiate, the consumption of tea made from poppy seeds also leads to a sense of euphoria, well-being, relaxation, and sedation.
  • It may cause a sense of itching all over the body, as the alkaloids in poppy seeds metabolize in the liver.
  • Depending on the dosage, one may also experience a stomach ache, nausea and drowsiness.
  • Regular consumption of poppy seed tea can also cause constipation, as is the case with other drugs.
  • Poppy seeds are drugs, and it is likely that you get addicted by its consumption. It contains two alkaloids called morphine and codeine, which if consumed in large amounts, can be fatal.
  • The withdrawal symptoms of any drug, including this tea are extremely painful and in some cases unbearable, which may become a cause for addiction to it, simply to eliminate the withdrawal symptoms.
  • The withdrawal symptoms that result when the effects of poppy seed tea wear off included stomach cramps, insomnia, anxiety, headache, and diarrhea. These may wear off within about ten days, but the psychological dependence on the drug and its euphoric effects may lead to an addiction.
  • Pregnant women should completely avoid the consumption of poppy seed tea and any other forms of this plant.
  • The dangers of an overdose of this tea include a respiratory arrest leading to death.
  • Several cases of death due to the consumption of poppy seed tea and related drug abuse have been documented over time.
The above-mentioned instructions have been given only for its purpose as a mild relaxant and sedative. All the side effects of the consumption and overdose of this tea have been mentioned here. If you wish to consume it, do so under the guidance of someone who is aware of the right amount to be consumed and all its effects. Do not consume it on a regular basis, as you are most likely to get addicted to it. To gain the right experience upon the consumption this tea, have it once in a while, in very small amounts.
Disclaimer: This HolisticZine article is for informative purposes only and does not, in any way, intend to replace the advice of an expert on the subject.
Poppy Seeds Isolated