Menu
Menu
Find a Doctor
What are Diet Teas and How Do They Work?

What are Diet Teas and How Do They Work?

updated

If you've been trying to lose weight, you might have seen the ads for diet teas that promote weight loss. Many dieters swear by these products. Is it really possible to sip your way to a slimmer you, or are these teas just another gimmick for quick weight loss promises?

What Are Diet Teas?

Diet teas are herbal beverages that promise to help you lose weight by suppressing your appetite, increasing your metabolism, or flushing excess water from your system. They come in a variety of flavors and strengths. Some of these teas are marketed as "colon cleansers," and most come with instructions for incorporating your tea drinking into a larger routine of healthy diet and exercise.

How Diet Teas Work

There are two basic types of diet tea: the stimulant tea and the laxative tea. Stimulant teas contain herbs such as ma huang, ephedra, or guarana. These herbs increase the tea drinker's heart rate and blood pressure. They are also said to speed up the drinker's metabolism while simultaneously reducing their appetite. This results in fewer calories taken in, as well as faster burning of the calories that are consumed.

Laxative diet teas contain herbs that stimulate the bowels. Some common colon-cleansing ingredients are senna, aloe, and buckthorn. Laxative teas increase the frequency of bowel movements. They also act as diuretics. The quick weight loss associated with these teas is mostly due to dehydration. It's important to remember that laxatives may help you shed a few pounds, but any loss of water weight will quickly be regained when you start eating and drinking normally.

Using Diet Teas Safely

Some consumers are concerned about the possible side effects of diet teas. While it's true that overuse can be harmful, the safe and conscientious use of diet teas can lead to weight loss. If you're drinking a stimulant tea, monitor your blood pressure and heart rate; strenuous exercise might raise them to dangerous levels. To avoid becoming dependant on the stimulant or laxative contents of diet tea, take a break from your consumption every few days. And if you ever experience pain or nausea, stop drinking the tea. Herbal blends are not regulated by the FDA, so you should carefully experiment to find the strength and frequency that's right for you, within the manufacturer's guidelines.

There is no instant fix for excess pounds, but diet teas can give you a weight loss advantage when used as part of a healthy diet and exercise regimen.

Want More Information?

Contact a Doctor Near You.