What is tummy tea? A doctor explains why you should skip the weight loss trend

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On In The Know’s Wellness Lab, we bust common health myths and learn about the best products for keeping your health in tip top shape with our host, Dr. Alok Patel.

Scrolling through social media, you may see sponsored posts for something called “tummy tea” that’s said to make you thinner, often by reducing bloating.

Well, if you’re trying to lose weight, the truth is that simply drinking tea is not going to work on its own, nor is it the healthiest option. According to Dr. Alok in this episode of The Wellness Lab, tummy tea “can reduce bloating because it can have a laxative effect,” making you use the bathroom more frequently.

Instead, if you want to reduce bloating or help your immune system, Dr. Alok suggests eating more fiber. While the average American eats only 15 grams of fiber per day, the recommended dosage is actually 25–30 grams per day. The best way to consume more fiber is to eat foods like fruits, vegetables, beans and whole grains.

However, if you feel like you need some help getting more fiber, you can talk to your doctor about trying a fiber supplement. One product Dr. Alok recommends is Anthony’s Organic Psyllium Husk Powder. To use, mix one to two teaspoons of the psyllium husk powder in a glass of water or a smoothie and you’ll get 3–6 grams of fiber to help you go to the bathroom more regularly.

Shop: Anthony’s Organic Psyllium Husk Powder, $14.98

Credit: Amazon

Nonetheless, there’s nothing wrong with drinking tea — green tea, earl gray or lapsang. It’s tummy tea that poses more of the problem. But if it’s caffeine you’re looking for, Dr. Alok also says drinking coffee in moderation is totally OK. Just make sure it’s black coffee and not one pumped with a huge amount of sugar every single morning. (His personal favorite is Seattle’s Best Coffee.)

Shop: Seattle’s Best Coffee Fair Trade Organic Dark Roast (12-Ounce Bag), $4.48

Credit: Amazon

You can watch this episode of “The Wellness Lab” above and learn more about fiber and caffeine, and the dark side of tummy teas.

If you enjoyed this article, you may also want to read about these amazing turmeric latte powders that improve digestion and your skin.

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