6 Teas That Burn Belly Fat
Losing weight is already hard enough, but specifically losing fat around your stomach can be an extra challenge. That's because most belly fat is different than the fat around the rest of your body. The majority of your belly fat is called visceral fat, which is located deeper than other body fat and sits around your abdominal organs. This makes it more dangerous than other body fat, and carrying too much of it can lead to an increased risk of things like heart disease or diabetes. Thankfully, there are things you can do to manage this type of fat, and there are even teas linked to burning belly fat.
No type of food or drink exists that can beat belly fat on its own, but some items contain certain compounds, vitamins, and nutrients that research has shown can aid in losing abdominal fat as part of a balanced diet. For example, you can eat foods higher in fiber, as this is a nutrient that has been linked to the reduction of abdominal fat, but doing this on its own will most likely not give you the results you're looking for.
The same can be said for drinking tea for belly fat. Teas naturally contain many different antioxidants and plant compounds that have been linked to a variety of health benefits, some of which have specifically been found to help in losing fat around your stomach.
Read on to learn about some of the specific types of tea that research shows can help you lose belly fat, and for more, check out the 20 Best Detox Waters.
Green tea may be one of the most notable teas for burning belly fat. According to a recent 2022 study published in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, participants who consumed large amounts of green tea—we are talking four or more cups a day—had a 44% lower risk of developing abdominal obesity than participants who didn't drink any green tea.
An older 2008 study published in Physiology & Behavior found that obese participants who regularly drank green tea lost more overall body weight than participants who didn't drink any, and a 2009 study published in The Journal of Nutrition found that consuming green tea catechins—an antioxidant found in green tea leaves—can help reduce abdominal fat when paired with exercise.
But what gives green tea these belly fat-burning qualities? Research shows that most of its weight loss properties are due to its rich polyphenols, and a subgroup of these polyphenols known as catechins. The most abundant catechin found in green tea is ECGC, which has been linked to speeding up metabolism.
You can find EGCG in other types of tea, but green tea by far has the highest concentration of these metabolism-boosting plant compounds.
Another tea that has been proven to help with abdominal fat is oolong tea.
Oolong tea comes from the same leaves where you'd find green and black tea, but it's partially oxidized, whereas green tea is unoxidized, and black tea goes through full oxidation. Oolong is made by drying the leaves under the sun until they're wilted and curled up.
Research shows that oolong tea also contains polyphenols linked to faster metabolism and reduced abdominal fat. One animal study published in The Journal of Nutrition showed that the polyphenols in green, black, and oolong teas all had the ability to help lower visceral fat tissue.
One 2020 study from the University of Tsukuba even found that oolong tea increased the breakdown of fat by around 20%, and continued to do so while participants slept.
Fans of chai, English breakfast tea, and Earl Grey (all types of black tea) will be pleased to know that research has linked black tea to weight loss and reduced visceral fat.
A 2016 report published in the journal Molecules says that the polyphenols found in black tea have anti-obesity properties and can help with the reduction of body weight and visceral fat, while the animal study mentioned earlier from The Journal of Nutrition includes black tea alongside oolong and green for its effect on abdominal fat.
Participants from a 2014 study published in Food & Function who drank three cups of black tea every day for three months saw more weight loss and reduction in their waist circumference (AKA their belly fat) than those who didn't drink the tea.
We've already mentioned three of the four major types of tea groups: green, oolong, and black. The fourth group of tea is white tea, which is known as the most delicate and least processed type of tea.
White tea—along with green and oolong—has been found to speed up metabolism and increase fat oxidation, which may help with overall weight loss or management.
A recent 2023 report published in Food Safety & Health also concluded that white tea had a beneficial impact on weight loss as well as visceral fat in particular.
Now that we've gone over the belly fat-melting benefits of green, oolong, black, and white tea, let's look at a specific type within these categories.
One kind of fermented Chinese black tea known as pu-erh tea has been linked to weight loss or fat reduction in several studies.
A 2014 study published in Phytotherapy Research found that male participants with metabolic syndrome who drank pu-erh tea saw a slight decrease in body fat and BMI.
Another study from Nutrition Research discovered that extract from pu-erh tea helped lower body weight, BMI, and visceral fat in Japanese adults.
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