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If you’re looking to boost your weight loss efforts, you may want to consider adding hibiscus tea to your diet. Hibiscus sabdariffa has been shown to promote weight loss by helping to regulate the genes involved in fat digestion, which can boost fat loss. It does not curb appetite like fenugreek, but it can aid in your weight loss journey.
In this article we will look at everything you need to know to decide if adding hibiscus tea to your diet could be right for you, and an easy recipe to make it at home.
What is Hibiscus Tea? Is it natural?
Hibiscus tea is an herbal tea made from the flower of the Hibiscus sabdariffa plant, a flower native to Africa and other tropical areas of the world. It has a fruity flavor that many like, and I find that it is really delicious with just a hint of natural sweetener such as monk fruit.
If made at home with just dried flowers or a fresh hibiscus flower, hibiscus tea is completely natural – it’s just dried flowers steeped in water. There are no chemicals or artificial ingredients in homemade hibiscus tea.
Does Hibiscus Tea Make You Lose Weight?
There is some evidence to suggest that hibiscus tea can help with weight loss. Hibiscus sabdariffa has been shown to promote weight loss by helping to regulate the genes involved in fat digestion, which can boost fat loss. It does not curb appetite, though, so if you are interested in something to curb appetite hibiscus tea will not help you with that.
Taking hibiscus extract in capsules seems to be most effective, but drinking 2-3 cups of hibiscus tea can also aid weight loss.
Can Hibiscus Tea Reduce Belly Fat?
There is no evidence that hibiscus tea specifically can help to reduce belly fat. However, the general weight loss benefits of hibiscus tea may help you to lose weight overall, which could lead to a reduction in belly fat.
Other Benefits of Hibiscus Tea
This tea does more than just promote weight loss, which is another reason many people drink it. It has many antioxidants and is a good source of Vitamin C.
According to Healthline, here are some other benefits of drinking hibiscus tea or taking capsules.
Lower Blood Pressure
Studies have shown hibiscus flower tea to be more effective than placebo for helping to reduce blood pressure, so if you have high blood pressure this is something you can discuss with your doctor.
There are only a few studies on this health aspect, but a study has shown hibiscus tea to help raise good cholesterol and lower bad cholesterol, so this is an area scientists are still looking into.
Improved Liver Health
Studies are promising that hibiscus tea can help decrease markers of liver damage and reduce the risk of liver failure.
Hibiscus tea is high in antioxidants like polyphenols, which have been shown to reduce the risk of cancer.
How Much Hibiscus Tea Should You Drink in a Day?
If you are drinking hibiscus tea for weight loss, you should drink 2-3 cups per day. If you are drinking it for general health benefits, 1-2 cups per day is a good amount. It is important not to overdo it, though – no more than 6 cups of hibiscus tea per day, as too much could lead to unwanted side effects.
What is the Best Time to Drink Hibiscus Tea?
The best time to drink hibiscus tea for weight loss is 20-30 minutes before a meal. I like to start my day with a cup of the tea, have one 30 minutes before lunch and again before dinner. If I’m out with my family and can’t get in that cup before dinner, then I’ll try to have a cup before bed.
Hibiscus tea does not contain caffeine so it will not keep you up at night.
I also like to add chia seeds to my hibiscus tea when I’m having it 30 minutes before a meal, as the chia seeds can help you feel full. See our guide to drinking chia seeds for weight loss here.
What are the Negative Effects of Hibiscus Tea?
Hibiscus tea is generally considered safe to drink, but there are a few potential side effects to be aware of, according to WebMD.
Here are the potential side effects of hibiscus tea:
- It can cause blood pressure to drop.
- Ringing in the ear
- May interfere with some drugs for diabetes and blood pressure
How to Make Hibiscus Tea
Now that you know all about the benefits of hibiscus tea and how much to drink, let’s get to the recipe!
You can use dried hibiscus flower petals or a hibiscus tea bag with dried hibiscus petals for this recipe. You can also find recipes for using fresh flowers.
Hibiscus Tea Recipe for Weight Loss
- tea kettle
- tea cup
- 1 cup water
- 1 Tbsp dried hibiscus flowers (or one tea bag)
- chia seeds (optional)
- natural sweetener (optional)
- Bring the water to a boil and remove from heat.
- Add the hibiscus flowers or tea bag and steep for 10 minutes.
- Add chia seeds and sweetener if desired, letting the chia seeds sit for 10-15 minutes while the tea cools down and enjoy!
Is Hibiscus Tea Right for You?
There are a few times when you should not drink hibiscus tea.
Here are some of the reasons you should not drink this tea:
- Your blood pressure is already low. Drinking hibiscus tea could make it drop too low.
- You are on blood pressure medication. The combination of the two could make your blood pressure drop dangerously low, see a doctor if you want to try this.
- You are pregnant or breastfeeding. Hibiscus tea has been shown to induce menstruation, so if you are pregnant do not drink this tea. (Read more about hibiscus and women’s health here)
- You are on medication. Check with your doctor before beginning any type of diet or exercise change.
Final Thoughts on How to Make Hibiscus Tea for Weight Loss
Now that you know the benefits and risks of hibiscus tea, you can decide for yourself if it’s something you might want to try for its weight loss benefits. It’s a delicious drink that you’ll enjoy and you can drink it as hot tea or iced tea.