With increasing popularity in the U.S., Ballerina tea can be purchased both online and in select stores. Commonly referred to as 3 Ballerina Tea, after a well-known brand, the herbal properties are unique.
Unlike traditional tea which is made with tea leaves, this beverage is made with an herb called senna. Known for its laxative-like properties, senna can be used to help with stomach upset or difficulties using the bathroom. On the packaging, it is labeled as a dietary supplement.
Where It Was Created
Ballerina tea’s roots can be dated back to the 9th century. Used as part of medical practices by Arabs, it was relied upon to help soothe upset stomachs and cleanse the digestive tract. Interestingly, the reasons people drink it today are closely related to why it was used long ago.
How It’s Made
Making a cup of Ballerina tea is easy and the directions can often be found on the box. To start, place one tea bag in a mug and fill the mug with ten ounces of boiling water. Let the tea bag steep for five minutes. If desired, honey or other additives can be used. While this tea is made and generally enjoyed hot, it can also be cooled and sipped on with ice cubes as a refreshing thirst-quencher. Despite how you choose to drink this beverage, the tea bags themselves should be kept at room temperature.
Variations & Flavors
While a package of Ballerina tea often lists senna as the only ingredient, this type of tea can also contain an herb called Chinese mallow. Unlike senna, the properties of Chinese mallow or its benefits have not been studied here in the U.S.
The most commonly used and known brand of this type of tea is 3 Ballerina Tea. Established in 2010 by Truong Giang Corp, 3 Ballerina Tea can be enjoyed in a few different ways. These options include:
- Cinnamon flavored
- Orange flavored
- Lemon flavored
- Ginseng flavored
- Regular Strength
- Extra Strength
The dried herbs used to make this tea, whether it is just senna or a combination of senna and Chinese mallow, can be bitter. To cut this strong taste and make it more appealing, honey, cinnamon, or even lemon can be added to the drink. The flavored teas, on the other hand, are said to have a smoother and less bitter taste and do not require any additives or sweeteners.
After a serving of this tea has been made, the liquid in the cup will appear dark brown. The tea bag has a greenish tint to it, due to its herbs. If sweeteners are added to the cup, that may change the tea’s appearance and taste.
Diving Inside the Cup
Each cup of Ballerina tea can be broken down and discussed with respect to nutritional values, many of which can be found on the packaging. These include information about caffeine content and calories per serving.
Excitable for many, the herbs used to make this tea are naturally caffeine-free. This makes this cup of tea an ideal choice for someone who doesn’t like caffeine and/or can’t have caffeinated beverages.
Calories, Carbs, Fats, & Proteins
One serving, which is equal to one tea bag, contains approximately three calories. Of that, there are zero grams of carbs, fats, or proteins. There are also zero grams of sodium and only one gram of fiber per serving of Ballerina tea.
The senna herb is native to India and China. It comes from a shrub also known as the Cassia angustifolia plant that produces beautiful yellow flowers and fruit. Aside from these two countries, parts of California have a climate that is adequate for growing select varieties of senna.
Chinese mallow, also known as the Malva verticillata plant, is grown in Africa, China, Europe, and North America. Although studies have not been done to prove or promote this herb’s effectiveness, it is still regarded as beneficial by some.
Controversial Name & Rumors
This tea has developed a reputation in the diet culture as somewhat of a wonder drink. Many people are under the assumption that since this tea has laxative-like properties, it helps with weight loss. After all, that is how it got its name.
The name “Ballerina tea” creates the illusion that people who drink it will be blessed with a small and energetic body like that of a dancer. On one brand, the package even has a picture of a ballet dancer on it.
This controversial option is just that. An opinion. The reality is that there is no scientific basis that Ballerina tea will cause fat to melt off your body. The weight being “lost” is from excessive bathroom usage. In fact, there have been reports made regarding negative side effects from drinking excessive amounts of tea that contains senna.
For some people, senna can cause some uncomfortable side effects. Since this herb is found in Ballerina tea, the following symptoms could result when drinking this beverage:
- Upset Stomach
In a Nutshell
The origins of Ballerina tea can be traced back to the 9th century. This caffeine-free beverage has become popular despite its bitter taste. There are several options and flavors to choose from, on top of adding honey and other sweeteners to make the tea more enjoyable.
Commonly drank for its ability to help sooth an upset stomach and regulate bathroom habits, it has gained an inaccurate reputation surrounding weight loss. Made with boiling water and two different herbs, senna and Chinese mallow, this tea is marketed and sold as an herbal supplement. I would recommend discussing this with someone in the medical field if you are interested in this tea. There is a lot of speculation surrounding positive health benefits as well as negative impacts that long-term ingestion can cause. When in doubt (or curious), talk to an expert.