I'm not a fan of quirky weight loss and health food claims. It's seems like every week there's a new litany of superfoods promising to keep us forever young, slim and healthy only to be replaced by a different list the following week. I long ago stopped paying attention to most of them. So I was a little surprised when this tonic, which was originally called Tangerine Weight-Orade and is straight from weight-loss and health guru Dr. Oz, caught my eye. Perhaps because more than anything it sounded simple and delicious: green tea, fresh tangerine and mint. Yum!
According to Dr. Oz, the Tangerine Weight-Orade is brimming with metabolism-boosting properties. The green tea is reported to boost metabolism by 12% and the tangerine has a chemical composition that increases sensitivity to insulin and stimulates genes that burn fat. I have no idea if any of this in true and frankly, I don't care. I just would like something cool and refreshing to drink as the days warm up. Any heath or weight loss benefits are a bonus.
Dr Oz's recipe is simple. Brew 8 cups of green tea and mix with 1 sliced tangerine and a handful of mint leaves in a large pitcher. Leave overnight and drink one pitcher daily.
I'm a little sensitive to caffeine, so while green tea is relatively low in caffeine at about 24 to 40 milligrams per 8 oz cup, 8 cups of green tea in one day is a lot for me. So I brew up 4 to 6 cups of green tea and add water. This also serves to cool the liquid down some, so when I add the mint it doesn't automatically wilt. Although it doesn't say this in the original recipe, I then refrigerate it overnight.
I love this drink. It's cool and refreshing and while I don't have any authority to back this claim, it feels clean and healthy. The mint is there primarily for taste, so I suspect you could substitute something else if you don't care for it (thyme? basil?) I would add that I think it's important to use organic herbs and tangerines here, since you are steeping them overnight. Dr. Oz's website says that it's fine to use mandarins instead of tangerines and if you can't find either, use ripe oranges.
Get the Recipe: Dr. Oz's Tangerine Weight-Orade
Related: Iced Green Tea Elixir with Ginger and Lemon
(Image: Dana Velden)