With June just around the corner, people everywhere are doing what they can to be summer ready. Whether or not these efforts are healthy is debatable. With Instagram fitness gurus, Twitter hashtags like #motivationmonday, the introduction of waist-trainers, and the expansion of the fitness industry, it’s almost impossible to not get sucked into this generation’s recent fitness fads. Other “healthy” obsessions many are interested in include juicing, the “lemon cleanse,” and detoxing. One of the most famous forms of detoxing is teatoxing. Recently becoming popular among teens and young adults, teatoxing has surpassed all other options for a quick slim-down. Companies such as Skinny Bunny Tea, Bootea, and FitTea promise customers weight loss, increased energy, and a healthier you, fast and easy all by drinking their product. Is there any evidence that this actually works? And what are the true effects of these teatoxes?
Regular tea has been around for centuries, an extremely popular drink among people of all ages and and cultures. Tea is also known to have various health benefits. It can reduce the risk of some cancers such as ovarian, breast, prostate, or other endometrial cancers. Tea can also reduce blood sugar levels, lower cholesterol, and increase metabolism. Teatoxes promise similar effects, but focus on weight loss. They promise increased metabolism faster than regular teas can, and can allow for increased energy when working out. Some teatoxes, such as Bootea, can cost up to $58. What are you really paying for? Ingredients such as lemongrass, ginger, and dandelion all promise to help support healthy liver functioning, leading your body to detoxification. Senna leaves, another ingredient in almost all of the teas, is a laxative that aids in intestines cleansing. Too much however, can lead to nausea and other negative side effects. Drinking a teatox for say 14 days wouldn’t lead to any worrisome effects. Too much of it however, and your body can become reliant. These are all worse case scenarios, but these possibilities should be kept in mind before consuming teatoxes.
According to the National Institutes of Health, there is no clear evidence that senna promotes weight loss. It does produce a laxative effect, but not necessarily a positive one, leading to discomfort and cramps. Dr. Laura Lagona suggests drinking high quality teas instead, saying they support the body’s natural daily process of detoxification, instead of forcing the effects like teatoxes do. Natural green and black teas are also rich in antioxidants. These regular drinks, along with a healthier diet and exercise, are suggested by health experts as many advise straying away from the teatoxes. Although many want the quick results teatoxing promises, it may be wiser, and healthier, to stray away from these drinks.
I went on two teatoxes myself, testing to see if the results mirrored their promises. I also made sure my diet and exercise stayed the same. Bootea was the first teatox I went on, spending two weeks drinking the morning and night bag. The results were not what I expected, feeling no different except slightly more dehydrated and a lot more disappointed. Fit Tea, my second teatox, didn’t seem to “slim me down” the way the company exaggerates it, but I felt a slight boost in energy and metabolism. To me, neither were worth the money, and I traded the overrated teatoxes for my simple green tea back.