Looking to shed a few pounds? Get ready to drink plenty of tea. Humans have been drinking tea since the days of emperor Shen Nung in China around 2737 B.C. In the recent book For All the Tea in China, author Sarah Rose recounts the daring and dramatic story about how England actually stole the world’s favorite drink by deploying Robert Fortune to steal China’s tea secrets in 1848 — an act that would change history. Nowadays, there are so many varieties available, it might be hard to know which ones will help you pare down a paunch. So we gathered ten teas to consider when it’s time to trim:
Fennel, an aromatic flowering plant species in the carrot family, is native to the Mediterranean. Rich in fiber, potassium, folate, vitamin C, and vitamin B-6, it’s bursting with nutrients and healthy properties. Drinking fennel can help reduce water retention, combats cellulite, boosts the metabolism and helps you to burn fat with ease.
Ginger originated in Southeast Asia; the medicinal root has long been used to aid in digestion, but some use it specifically to target belly fat and reduce cholesterol. It also raises your body temperature and increases metabolism to burn more fat. Additionally, ginger can help you to feel full, so eating ginger or drinking ginger tea can help to keep your appetite in check.
Goji berries, a superfood with high fiber and diuretic properties can boost the immune system, detoxify the liver and stabilize blood sugar. Making goji tea is as simple as dropping a few goji berries into boiling water (be sure to eat the berries afterwards for the full effect). Bottoms up!
Chock full of antioxidants and delivering a hefty dose of caffeine, Green Tea stimulates the metabolism, increases the release of hormones that burn fat, reduces the appetite and provides you with just the right amount of energy to head into work or a workout. Green tea is made from camellia sinensis leaves that have not gone through the oxidation process used to make black or oolong teas.
Known for their big colorful flowers, hibiscus plants are so much more than decor. Rich in vitamin C, minerals and antioxidants, hibiscus tea can help lower blood pressure and cholesterol, protect the liver and help with digestion. Hibiscus can also help to lower the absorption of starch and glucose, thus further aiding in weight loss. Making hibiscus tea is as easy as mixing about two teaspoons of dried hibiscus flowers in a pot of water and leaving the tea to steep for about five minutes. Remove the flowers and serve. (It also just might just be the prettiest tea on our entire list!)
Possibly originating in China or Taiwan, Oolong tea can not only be used to lower cholesterol, but also increases metabolism and helps the body digest food. Like green tea, Oolong tea comes from the camellia sinensis plant, but is fermented and partially oxidized. Drinking a cup will activate enzymes that start the fat burning engines in your body and keep them roaring for hours after your last sip.
With origins dating back to China’s Tang Dynasty, matcha is a ground green tea powder made from the tencha leaf. Rich in vitamins A, C, E, K and B-complex it also contains chromium, magnesium, selenium and zinc. Because you consume the actual leaves when drinking matcha, it’s full of extra fiber and increased levels of amino acids. Drinking matcha helps boost metabolism and burn calories as well as helping the body to eliminate stored fat and suppress appetite.
Peppermint tea is simply an herbal tea that is made by infusing peppermint leaves in hot water. The powerful aroma of peppermint is said to reduce or suppress one’s appetite. Drinking a cup can aid in calming the stomach and aid in digestion. Its subtle amounts of caffeine, phenol and antioxidants activate metabolism and assist with overall digestion. Dating back to Ancient Egypt (where the plant was used for indigestion), peppermint grows primarily in Europe and North America.
Rooibos, or “red bush” tea is a member of the Fabaceae plant family growing in South Africa. Unlike black or green tea, Rooibos doesn’t contain caffeine but is rich with Vitamin C and Aspalathin which can inhibit fat storage. Naturally sweet tasting, Rooibos doesn’t need sugar or milk to leave you smacking your lips.
Harvested from the young leaves of a Camellia sinensis plant, white tea is made from these tiny buds plucked before they have opened and seen the sun. Much like black and Oolong, the tea is known to speed up metabolism and torch calories and fat cells.