We drink more beverages than anyone I know of. Each part of my daily routine has a beverage choice associated with it. Whether it be water, smoothie, coffee, espresso, tea (a daily weight loss tea!), red wine or vitamin C mix there isn’t a time of day I am not carrying a cup. My daily weight loss tea guide outlines the basics of choosing the right beverage at the right time.
Each option in my day is supportive of a different mood or atmosphere. It brings me joy and I find it cozy and satisfying.
If you are an all-day beverage consumer like myself and also on a weight loss journey this can play to your advantage.
I’m not talking about getting high on espresso (although it does get me to a workout quicker) or calming down using red wine (although some research shows the antioxidants are helpful in weight loss).
I’m talking about herbal tea.
Many different herbs and spices have qualities that have been shown they can aide a weight loss journey. This post outlines a simple approach to using these herbs and spices.
According to most studies linked in this article these ingredients will not cause weight loss on their own. They need to be used in conjunction with an appropriate weight loss nutrition and exercise program. Of course, I would recommend a more holistic approach even still.
Buying so-called “daily weight loss tea kits” that include different blends of the following herbs is not recommended as they usually contain fillers and herbs with little documented action. I am much more prone to recommend just making simple combinations and prompting patients to flavor their teas using other herbs or natural sweeteners like stevia, maple syrup or honey.
Daily Weight Loss Tea Ingredients
Weight loss & Energy – Green Tea
Green tea has been used in weight loss for many years and there has been debate about its effectiveness.
The most recent trials show high dose capsules of green tea’s active ingredient EGCG (Epigallocatechin gallate) can increase adiponectin levels (a protein associated with reduced body fat), increase insulin sensitivity and reduce total cholesterol levels.
The dosage required to achieve this effect is more than what can be obtained through tea and after consulting with your healthcare provider you might determine the capsules are for you (be weary though – they can be hard on the kidneys and you need to stay supported with an antioxidant protocol and track kidney function if you are at risk).
Green tea is much more mild but still beneficial. Drinking green tea not only gives you a low dose of the beneficial EGCG extract but you also get the rest of the herb’s antioxidant potential and a mild caffeine boost.
All of this combined seems to equal a mild metabolism enhancement – combine that with a healthy lifestyle and we are getting somewhere.
I am currently drinking green tea in the mid afternoons.
Weight Loss – The Ginsengs
The two ginsengs commonly used in weight loss are Panax and Siberian. The difference between the two is as follows:
- Panax – A more stimulating herb that significantly increases energy (sometimes too much – like in Amy’s case). Some human research shows possible blood sugar control benefits and other animal research shows it helps to speed weight loss.
- Consider using it if you need a boost of energy before a workout or if you experience lows in the mid-afternoon.
- Siberian (Eleuthro) – Known as an adaptogen siberian ginseng is used to improve stamina and raise energy levels in those with sluggish adrenal output.
- In other words, if you wake tired, take hours to get going, have a high stress lifestyle, have a low morning cortisol output, etc – this herb is for you.
I like using ginsengs as a caffeine free boost that shouldn’t hard on the adrenals. Consider using them if your body has gone into storage mode because of high stress, if you can’t find the energy to workout or if a simple cardio workout wipes you out for days.
Inflammation management – Boswellia and Curcumin
As weight gain occurs the levels of the hormone leptin also rise. This hormone is supposed to tell our brain that we are full – we don’t need more food – stop eating!
For some strange reason as the levels rise the function of the hormone is reduced. We stop catching the signal.
An interesting note about leptin is that it is pro-inflammatory. It causes inflammation. Some believe that it is this inflammation caused by the leptin that is blocking the brain’s response. Therefore, we fall into the cycle – our brains think we are still hungry, we eat more and make more fat, secrete more leptin, make more inflammation and it continues…
How can we stop the cycle and use a daily weight loss tea to mitigate some of the effects of leptin?
While on a healthy lifestyle journey let’s reduce the inflammation so that we can naturally recognize appetite signals the way they were meant to be interpreted.
Two herbs that are often used in teas that can reduce inflammation are boswellia and tumeric, or it’s active ingredient curcumin.
I am currently drinking a caffeine-free tumeric tea in the evenings. It can be flavored in many different ways.
Boosting memory – Peppermint tea
If you have listened to Healthy Rebel Radio you know that I talk about working memory a lot. I define it as the ability to make judgements that are supportive of our highest good in any situation – on the spot.
- Deciding to eat a healthy meal vs the alternative.
- Drinking water instead of soda.
- Working out instead of sitting on the couch.
These are in-the-moment decisions. Working memory facilitates the proper choice. Fatigue is the main culprit in the failure of working memory.
Peppermint tea has been shown to significantly increase subjective alertness and long term memory (hint – learning from your past). It can be just the right caffeine-free mental boost in weight loss.
I use it to flavor my green tea in the afternoons.
Calming down – Chamomile tea, Passionflower
Racing mind, uncontrolled cravings and binge eating are main causes of weight gain due to anxiety.
Chamomile tea is excellent at reducing these nighttime energy, wired anxiety-type symptoms. Chamomile can be helpful for sleep but be careful not to drink it too early – it can reduce working memory (only used pre-sleep).
Passionflower is another option in this category. I recommend it for people with high anxiety and we see benefits.
Blood sugar regulation – Cinnamon
Finally, blood sugar control is very important in weight loss. Managing insulin sensitivity and pancreatic release by eating a high fiber, moderate protein and fat, low sugar diet is very important.
For those of us who need additional help there are many effective herbs and spices in this category. The most common is cinnamon.
Cinnamon has been shown to be effective in the reduction of cholesterol, fasting blood sugar and improving insulin sensitivity. Doses to achieve these benefits may be higher than we would normally consume in a tea but its addition can still be useful to your mid day blend.
Daily Weight Loss Tea Ingredients (Not Included)
Many other choices could have been included in this post such as yerba mate, pu-erh, cayenne, gymnemma, etc. Either their research wasn’t up to par or popularity hasn’t caught up to the previous choices at this time. If you have questions about a herb you heard useful please leave them in the comments below.
In this next category we have put together a few blend options that you may find helpful during your weight loss journey. Flavor them how you would like using other herbs, spices and natural sweeteners.
AM Tea Choice
- Panax or Siberian Ginseng
- Green Tea
- Pepperment Tea
MID-DAY Tea Choice
- Green Tea
- Boswellia or Tumeric
PM Tea Choice
- Chamomile Tea
Daily beverages – What to avoid
On a final note I would like to mention that if you are an all day beverage consumer like myself it is extremely important to stay away from added sugars, artificial sweeteners or types of empty calorie beverages like soda or sugar-added sweet teas.
I believe everything we put into our body should have a function that contributes to our higher good. High fructose corn syrup, aspartame, Ace-K, grams and grams of added sugars provide no benefit.
Is tea consumption a part of your weight loss journey? Do you have a daily weight loss tea to share? How has it helped? Let us know in the comments below.