The miracle tea that keeps you trim
Friday 19 December 2008
In these cold winter months, there’s nothing better than settling down to a nice warming cup of tea is there?
Well, actually there is ... how about settling down to a nice cup of tea that not only warms you up but also helps you lose weight at the same time? And while you’re at it, a tea that combats heart disease, is anti-aging and helps you sleep better at night.
What are these miracle brews? I hear you ask. Come with me to the kitchen to find out more..
Ok, so the kettle’s on but what teas are on the menu? Well you’ve probably heard of green tea as a slimming aid - Sophie Dahl recently said she slimmed from a size 16 to a 12 by sipping cups of it – other teas famous for their slimming and other health benefits are Pu-erh, and Rooibos. I had a tasting session to see what I thought.
First up was green tea. This is a bit of a celebrity favourite - J-Lo and Gwyneth Paltrow have also added it to their tea caddies - but what did I make of it?
Well it smells ok: It’s quite light, a bit grassy and a little bit earthy. Taste wise I found that the stronger it got, the less I liked it, but if I kept it nice and weak I could drink it all day!
And wise would I be if I did: green tea as a host of health benefits. It aids slimming by speeding up the metabolism and reducing blood sugar levels. Aim for 4-5 cups a day for maximum benefit, but be sure not combine it with eating burgers, as that won’t work at all!
Other health benefits are that it helps prevent heart disease, is full of anti-oxidants, lowers cholesterol, decreases stress and aids digestion. Well that’ll do me nicely, thank you.
Next up was Rooibos. Like green tea, this South African red bush tea has zero calories so if you substitute it in for your normal drinks you’ll immediately be saving on kilojoules.
Otherwise Rooibos is great for keeping you calm: it eases irritability, headaches and nervous tension and can help you sleep.
It also lowers cholesterol and helps you maintain healthy skin, teeth and bones.
If you put it directly on the skin it can help slow the aging process, so put your used Rooibos tea bags in the fridge or freezer and then use them to soothe tired eyes at the end of a hard day’s work (or an even harder night out)!
What did I think? Don’t be put off by the rather punchy woody smell - the taste is surprisingly subtle and everso drinkable. I really liked it and gave it 8/10.
Lastly it was Pu-erh’s turn. Now I’d never heard of this, but apparently it is well known for its slimming properties. It contains caffeine, flavanol, polyphenols, vitamins and other properties that promote fat oxidation, so if you drink 2 to 3 cups a day you can reduce body fat.
Studies also show that it lowers blood lipids that help prevent cardiovascular disease, high blood pressure and lower cholesterol levels.
My first impressions? Well it doesn’t smell that great, that’s for sure. It’s very earthy, to the point of reminding me of pets corner at the zoo. But is its bark worse than it’s bite? Well no, not really, but I’d still not be chuffed if I found it in my Christmas stocking this year. My score 5/10.
And the winner is..?
I’ll be adding Rooibos and Green tea to my Christmas (tea caddy) list this year. Unless I get really overweight, I think I’ll leave Pu-erh to the goats.