Chinese Diet Tea: Does It Exist? The Good, The Bad And The Ugly

Chinese diet tea or green tea fat burners have become the latest trends in diet land, invented to lose weight fast and easy.

If you’ve also become interested in dieting with the help of tea, you first need to know there are two types of diet tea:

  • One made from the tea plant Camellia sinensis (The Good!) (green tea, oolong or black tea).
  • One made from various (laxative) herbs (The Bad..).


Chinese diet tea: the good…

The first type of so-called Chinese diet tea (made from the tea plant Camellia sinensis) speeds up your metabolism through thermogenesis. This is the process where calories are converted into heat energy which in turn helps your body to burn fat and ultimately to lose weight (even when at rest). Polyphenols (or antioxidants) stimulate thermogenesis by interacting with each other…

…and since green tea and oolong tea contain the highest levels of polyphenols (including EGCG) when compared to other types of tea…

the effects of GREEN TEA and OOLONG TEA consumption on BODY WEIGHT is highest!

What’s more, the antioxidants also help to regulate your digestive system; making you feel full faster (a so-called natural appetite suppressant) and they help digesting your food better.

IT WORKS BOTH WAYS: Not only will you eat less, the stuff you DO eat, will be digested better.

Other advantages of drinking tea in relation to dieting are that  tea only carries 4 calories per serving and the caffeine in green tea helps to burn even more calories. Two studies examined the effects of tea consumption, as a beverage, on body weight or EE (energy expenditure or thermogenesis).

Study 1

Rumpler and friends tested whether full-strength oolong tea increased EE or changed the oxidation rates more than did three control beverages1.

They found the following:

  • Full-strength oolong tea stimulates EEby an extra 2.9% (burning off an extra 67 kcal) compared to water. Caffeinated water, however, rose by 3.4% (79 kcal) compared to water.
  • Fat oxidation increased by 12%for full-strength oolong tea versus an 8% increase for caffeinated water.


In their view, you can only achieve weight balance if

  • You drink enough full-strength (oolong) tea to influence EE and fat oxidation, and
  • You follow the proper diet, one that is not offsetting the slight energy imbalance.


Study 2

Komatsu and his friends examined the effects of oolong tea and green tea consumption on fasting EE 2. After a 2-hour measuring period, they found resting EE was similar in the two groups before consumption of the different beverages and remained low after water (+3 kcal) and green tea (+12 kcal) consumption but increased significantly after oolong tea consumption (+27 kcal).

Because oolong tea had less caffeine and EGCG than did green tea, the rise in EE must be due to the presence in oolong tea of more polymerized polyphenols than are found in green tea. However, since measuring only took place during two hours, we cannot say this finding is always valid.

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