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This "Secret" Tea Improves Weight Loss Results, Says Science

Here's why this purported weight loss tea actually got our attention.

All-natural drinks for weight loss are a hot topic, from the coffee with lemon juice rumor to the chia-seed-in-water trend that nutrition pros actually got behind this week. But, with all these experimental diet drinks suddenly catching buzz thanks to TikTok, there's a unique tea that one source suggests has been a "best kept secret for weight loss" for ages.

Keep reading to learn about the Chinese tea that science has actually shown might boost weight loss efforts. Also, read up on what two dietitians are saying is the #1 best yogurt for your gut health.

Puerh Tea

Pu erh tea

For sure, you can't believe every weight loss tip you read. So, when we saw that an Indian news source was suggesting puerh tea has some power to support weight loss, we dug a little deeper to find out if this was the real deal.

Turns out, it seems like this puerh tea (also referred to as "pu-erh" or "pu erh" tea, and pronounced "pooh-air") could show some effect if you're trying to lose weight.

The Science of Puerh Tea

Shutterstock said puerh tea comes from the Yunnan district of China and is cultivated from the Camellia sinensis—the same plant as green tea, black tea, and oolong tea.

The source also notes that similar to oolong tea, puerh tea is fermented. However, puehr tea goes through an additional process after fermentation, wherein its leaves are sun-dried in a humid environment.

As for its role in helping you lose weight? Keep reading.

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It's Actually Been Shown to Work

Shutterstock calls puerh tea "China's best kept secret for weight loss," and that may not be a gimmick. The source explains that puerh tea "is said to block your body from producing more fat" and is regarded for its roles in digestion and cleansing the blood of toxins and blood fat (better known in the U.S. as cholesterol).

But does this hold up? According to Healthline, it really might. The outlet cites one 2011 Japanese study with 36 participants that found when it was administered over 12 weeks, puerh tea "exhibited significant effects in reducing the mean waist circumference, BMI, and visceral fat values and might be useful for weight control and prevention of obesity development (or metabolic syndrome) in humans," as the study's team of cardiovascular researchers concluded.

This could be due to the tea's fermentation process and those effects on the gut microbiome—you can read more about that in One Major Effect Pickle Juice Has on Your Gut, Says Science.

Drinking Puerh Tea to Lose Weight


Looking to see if this could work for you? Sources note that puerh tea is often sold in this "cake" form. One place to look for it could be an Asian grocery store, or you may find puerh tea online.

In the study we cited, participants drank tea made with 333 milligrams (or 0.01 ounces) of puerh tea leaves three times a day—all before they ate a meal.

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Krissy Gasbarre
Krissy is a senior news editor at Eat This, Not That!, managing morning and weekend news related to nutrition, wellness, restaurants and groceries (with a focus on beverages), and more. Read more about Krissy
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