The Interwebs can’t stop talking about weight-loss teas (cough, thanks, Kardashians), but most of it is just that: talk. For all the Instagram influencers hawking these miraculous “teatox” drinks, filled with unpronounceable mystery ingredients, there’s not a lot of science to back up their claims.
But, do you know what does have science behind it? That regular ol’ box of tea that you have sitting in your cupboard right now.
Case in point: A just-released animal study published in the European Journal of Nutrition found that, by lowering levels of obesity-promoting bacteria in the gut while also increasing the number of lean mass-supporting bacteria, black tea may promote healthy weight loss. “Some black tea components stay in the intestines and serve as fuel [or prebiotics] for ‘friendly’ bacteria in the gut,” explains Jennifer McDaniel, R.D.N, a spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics who was not involved in the study. “These changes in the gut bacteria positively influence energy metabolism and may be what is responsible for modest weight loss.”
And it’s not just black tea that has weight-loss benefits. “While no tea or herbal beverage will lead to significant weight loss, there may be ingredients in teas or herbal drinks that directly or indirectly support weight loss in addition to the right diet and exercise,” McDaniel says.
Here, seven common types of tea can also help you shed pounds—straight off the shelf, no celebrity endorsement necessary.