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Is Black Tea Good for Weight Loss? You Could Be Missing a Trick
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Is Black Tea Good for Weight Loss? You Could Be Missing a Trick

Written by Edibel Quintero, RD | Medically reviewed by Medically reviewed by Rosmy Barrios, MD
Published on 2022 July 26
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5 min

Black tea is a popular caffeinated beverage rich in antioxidants that may bring benefits to overall health. Is weight loss one of them? Keep reading to find out the weight loss potential of tea, black tea, its benefits, and side effects.

is black tea good for weight loss

Extreme diets, over-exercising, and severe food restrictions are popular weight-loss strategies that people revert to time and time again. These methods are harmful, unsustainable, and exhausting.

If you’re tired of chasing fitness tips and unrealistic goals, you’re probably looking for an alternative strategy. Perhaps the secret to weight loss success lies in your daily beverage.

We all know how important it is to stay hydrated and drink plenty of water and other unsweetened fluids, such as tea.

Although it’s the second most-consumed drink in the world, you might be surprised to learn that your usual cups of black tea may promote weight loss.

This article covers how black tea may help you lose weight.

Does Tea Make You Lose Weight? Answer Explained

Although tea alone is not enough to produce a significant weight reduction, it does have properties that may help you lose weight. Tea contains plant compounds called catechins. Catechins have been shown to reduce body weight, body mass index (BMI), waist circumference, and body fat.

Tea also contains caffeine which may promote weight loss by increasing fat burning. As a stimulant, caffeine boosts energy levels which may help you keep active and burn more calories.

Most of the research into catechins and weight loss surrounds green tea, as green tea has the highest levels of catechins. However, the combination of catechins and caffeine in both green and black tea has the same beneficial effects.

Is Black Tea Good for Weight Loss?

Black tea is an excellent drink when on a diet. This drink is a great option when trying to slim down as it promotes metabolism and has a diuretic effect. It is recommended to drink three to five cups of black tea to reap the benefits.

Black tea consumption may boost weight loss results for several reasons. It typically has a higher caffeine content which increases energy levels, helping you burn more calories. Black tea contains polyphenols, which have anti-obesity effects by reducing calorie intake, promoting lipid metabolism, preventing new fat cells, and reducing oxidative stress.

Consuming black tea also has links to reduced waist circumference and improved body fat distribution.

Benefits of Black Tea for Weight Loss

It’s good news for black tea lovers. Your favorite drink has benefits that help you reach your weight loss goals and support good health.

If you don’t already drink tea, here are 5 reasons to add a few cups to your diet.

#1 Low-calorie drink

Black tea is very low in calories, with only 2.4 calories per cup. So, whether you enjoy two or three cups per day, you’re not going to consume a lot of calories. It is fat-free, making it the perfect beverage for a low-fat diet.

Remember that adding ingredients to your black tea, such as milk, cream, and sugar, will quickly rack up the calorie count. Black tea consumed plain is the best approach.

Cutting out high-calorie drinks is a great place to start if you want to promote fat loss, especially those that fuel a high-sugar diet.

#2 Boosts metabolism

The caffeine in teas, including black tea, white tea, and oolong tea, may support weight loss by boosting the resting metabolic rate. Additionally, black tea polyphenols enhance lipolysis, the metabolic process that breaks down stored fat.

#3 Prebiotic effect

Research shows that some teas have prebiotic effects. Both black tea extract and green tea extract can help regulate the gut microbiome by increasing the growth of good gut bacteria. Therefore, tea drinking may play an important role in supporting gut health.

#4 Heart-healthy

Black tea contains flavonoids that have antioxidant, anti-cancer, anti-inflammatory, and antiviral properties that support heart health. Due to these properties, flavanoids are associated with many health benefits for the human body, including a reduced risk of cardiovascular disease.

Regular consumption may reduce several risk factors for developing heart disease, including high blood pressure, high cholesterol levels, and obesity.

#5 Keeps digestive tract healthy

As black tea contains antioxidants with anti-inflammatory effects, drinking it may support a healthy digestive system. The positive effects of black tea on the gut microbiome help keep your gut healthy, while the healing properties may protect against stomach ulceration.

Black tea consumption is also used as a traditional medicine to treat diarrhea.

How to Make Black Tea for Weight Loss

It’s easy to make black tea. You can either use tea bags, tea leaves, or powdered black tea, depending on your personal preference.

If using tea bags, add a tea bag to your cup or teapot and add boiling water. Brew the tea by leaving the bag to infuse before removing it using a teaspoon.

For loose leaf tea, add the tea leaves to your tea infuser and place the infuser inside a cup or teapot. Pour over boiling water and allow it to steep for around five minutes or longer if you prefer strong tea. Once satisfied, you can strain the tea to remove the leaves.

If you prefer a cold drink, iced tea provides the same benefits as hot black tea.

Side Effects of Black Tea

Due to the high caffeine content, black tea may cause adverse side effects if you consume too much. The effects can range from mild to severe and include:

  • Restlessness and feeling shaky
  • Headaches
  • Dizziness
  • Insomnia and sleep disturbance
  • Fast heart rate and heart palpitations
  • Anxiety
  • Dehydration

FAQs

Does tea make you fat?

As tea is a low-calorie beverage, drinking it will not make you fat. If you experience weight gain from tea drinking, the tea itself is not the culprit. Adding other ingredients to treat the taste buds, such as milk, cream, and sugar, can quickly increase your daily calorie consumption.

Will I lose weight if I drink black tea every day?

Drinking black tea daily can contribute to your weight loss efforts. However, you should not rely on tea alone to reach your desired weight. Instead, it’s best to drink black tea as part of a healthy lifestyle to reap the potential weight loss benefits.

What is the best time to drink black tea?

Although you can enjoy black tea at any time of the day, many people prefer a cup in the morning to start the day. Black tea contains caffeine which helps wake you up and make you more alert. As caffeinated drinks affect sleep quality, you should avoid drinking black tea at night.

A Word From Our Nutritionist

Black tea is made from the leaves of the Camellia Sinensis plant. The leaves are fully oxidized to produce black tea, creating a highly-caffeinated, dark cup of tea. During the oxidation process, the catechins produce flavonoids that may help with weight loss.

Additionally, drinking black tea can reduce calorie consumption, boost metabolism, support the digestive system, and reduce risk factors for cardiovascular disorders. All of these factors are promising for weight loss and weight maintenance.

Most healthy adults can tolerate up to 400 milligrams of caffeine per day. Keep this in mind when going for your next cup. You should speak to your doctor before adding black tea to your diet, especially if you have high blood pressure or irregular heart rhythm.

Conclusion

Black tea appears to have several properties that may help you lose weight. In particular, the oxidizing process to produce black tea increases the fat-burning effects. 

As it’s low in calories and doesn’t contain fat, you can drink plenty of plain black tea without worrying about weight gain. But remember to watch your caffeine intake to avoid nasty side effects.Combine your tea drinking with a nutritious diet and regular exercise to reduce overall fat and promote lean body mass. Cut out your milky coffees and sugary energy drinks for black tea and enjoy the natural, weight-loss-friendly boost.

Written by
Edibel Quintero is a medical doctor who graduated in 2013 from the University of Zulia and has been working in her profession since then. She specializes in obesity and nutrition, physical rehabilitation, sports massage and post-operative rehabilitation. Edibel’s goal is to help people live healthier lives by educating them about food, exercise, mental wellness and other lifestyle choices that can improve their quality of life.
Medically reviewed byRosmy Barrios, MD
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