Unsweetened tea is a fantastic healthy drink and weight loss tool in general, though some varieties may be better than others. There have been quite a few studies done demonstrating that tea has the potential to help you lose fat, though the less popular kinds are not as well studied.
There are a few reasons why tea can help you lose weight that apply to virtually all unsweetened tea types. Drinking tea before a meal often helps you eat fewer calories during the meal because it acts as an appetite suppressant. If you usually drink soda or some other high calorie drink, then substituting tea for it saves you even more calories.
Tea is also a diuretic, so it helps reduce bloating and water weight. Across the board, tea can help strengthen your immune system, improve your cardiovascular health, regulate your blood sugar, suppress your appetite, and much more.
Here are 4 natural teas you should try –
Green tea is widely available and has a mild, pleasant taste. It has dozens of health benefits because it is full of antioxidants, so it is a very popular drink overall. It is also commonly used as a weight loss tool.
If you walk down the tea aisle at your local grocery store, you’ll probably see at least a dozen different varieties of green tea alone. It comes in quite a few flavors, some of the most popular being jasmine, orange, and passion fruit.
A study published in the Journal Of Physiology And Behavior found that green tea helped subjects lose weight because it increased their metabolism and fat oxidation, meaning that their bodies burned more calories and more fat at the same time.
A molecule called EGCG is the most likely reason for this metabolic change. How much green tea do you need to drink in order to reap the fat loss benefits?
Most experts claim that you need at least 5-6 cups per day, but if you can’t drink that much, just do what you can; green tea has many other health benefits, so any amount will make you healthier.
Green tea usually contains a small amount of caffeine, but it does come in decaf varieties. Some studies have found that green tea extract may be effective for weight loss, too, as long as it contains the molecule EGCG.
Rooibos tea, also known as red tea, originates from a South African plant, and it has gained popularity in other areas due to its health benefits. While rooibos is technically an herbal drink and does not actually come from the tea plant, it is usually called tea. Rooibos tea is somewhat sweet, yet it has almost no calories.
Like most teas, it is full of antioxidants. It’s good for your heart, your skin, your liver, your stomach, and your brain. Rooibos tea contains a molecule called aspalathin, which is thought to lower the levels of hunger-triggering hormones in your body, and it may also make it harder for new fat to form.
It is naturally caffeine-free. A study published in the PLOS One Journal found that rooibos significantly lowers oxidative damage and inflammation in the body, which helps you avoid diseases and maintain a healthy metabolism.
Oolong tea is a very popular drink for weight loss as well. It also increases both metabolic rate and fat oxidation rate within the body. Its polyphenol content is part of why it increases your metabolism and limits the absorption of fat.
Many experts think that oolong tea is even more effective than green tea at helping you lose weight, and so you should be able to get away with drinking 2-3 cups per day rather than 5-6.
A study published in the Journal Of Nutrition demonstrated that, compared to water, oolong tea significantly increases both calories burned and fat oxidized. Oolong tea has a small amount of caffeine in it.
Rose tea is a type of black tea made with rose petals. It has a moderately sweet taste and may help satisfy sugar cravings, even though it has no actual sugar in it. Rose tea is often used to prevent constipation, so it may help regulate digestion.
A study published in the European Journal Of Nutrition found that the flavonoid content in certain teas like this could help normalize blood sugar levels. This may lead to fewer sugar cravings and even a more efficient sugar metabolism.
It is very high in antioxidants like most other tea types, and so it has many health benefits.Of course, simply drinking rose tea can help reduce your appetite and thus lower your daily calorie consumption. Rose tea contains small amounts of caffeine.
How To Choose The Best Tea
Certain brands may be better than others. Sometimes, this is due to the quality of the tea leaves, and sometimes this is due to additives in the tea bags.
Smell and taste are the best indicators of tea quality. The smell of good tea should always be refreshing. All teas should have a lasting and memorable unique aroma.
Each different type of tea has its own unique taste. For example, green tea should be fresh and pure. Rooibos teas, oolongs and black teas should taste strong with a delicate individual flavour.
Added Ingredients to Avoid
When purchasing tea, it’s important that you pay attention to the ingredients label and to the tea brand. Quite a few pre-packaged bagged teas contain added ingredients, and some of these are actually bad for you.
When looking specifically for weight loss teas, be wary of those containing senna.
Senna can be dangerous, causing low potassium, stomach cramps, and muscle weakness, among other things.
Obviously, avoid sweetened tea, whether it contains actual sugar or sugar substitutes. Excess sugar intake is a major cause of weight gain, and sugar substitutes are really bad for us altogether.
If you need to add something sweet to your tea in order to drink it, try honey.
When To Drink Various Tea Types
You can drink tea throughout the day, but certain types of tea may be better suited for the morning or night. The main reason for this is caffeine content. Most people cannot drink caffeine in the evening without experiencing sleep problems.
In general, black tea contains the most caffeine, followed by oolong tea, green tea, and white tea, in that order. Certain types of tea are used to help you get to sleep, and therefore should probably not be consumed in the morning.
These include chamomile tea, valerian tea, peppermint tea, and lavender tea. Tea tends to act as a diuretic, so drinking a lot of tea right before bed might cause you to wake up in the middle of the night for a bathroom break.
How To Properly Brew It
Most people recommend brewing tea in a specific way, though it really depends on the specific type of tea you’re making. Start to bring a pot of water to a boil, then take it off of the stove before it starts to fully boil and add the tea bags.
You can make it with boiling water, too, but it seems that the tea tastes better if you use just-below-boiling water during the steeping process. Let it sit for 2-4 minutes before removing the tea bags for optimal tea strength. If you like strong tea or plan to pour it over ice, let it steep for 1-2 minutes longer.
For rooibos tea, it’s best to let it steep for at least 5-6 minutes. Many people who make their own rooibos tea let it steep for hours at a time, resulting in a strong but not bitter drink.
With oolong tea, be careful not to let it steep for more than 2 minutes or it may become bitter. Many people believe that loose-leaf tea is far superior then tea bags when it comes to oolong tea. When brewing loose-leaf tea, bring water to just under a boil, add the tea leaves, then strain it once it’s done steeping.
Overall, drinking tea can be a great way to help you lose fat. Pretty much any genuine tea that doesn’t contain added sugar will provide health benefits, so don’t hesitate to explore different teas and find your favorite. Tea is also a very inexpensive drink when bought in bulk, and it makes a great substitute for soda and other high-calorie, high-sugar beverages.
Tea is great hot or cold, by itself or with a meal, plain or sweetened with a little honey, and in large quantities or small. Obviously, drinking tea alone cannot cause significant weight loss. In order to lose weight, you have to consume fewer calories than you burn and ideally limit your sugar intake.
Tea can help you eat less and avoid sugary drinks, and it can even speed up your metabolism and help your body burn off fat more quickly. Combined with a healthier diet and a bit of exercise, tea can definitely help you achieve your fat loss goals more efficiently.
About the Author:
Emma Deangela is the best selling author of The Alkaline Diet Program and 80/20 Fat Loss. She has helped over tens of thousands of men and women to lose weight and transform their health with sound nutrition advice.
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