The so-called “teatox” trend has come under fire by many nutritionists, and even some celebrities. Jameela Jamil, for example, called out Khloe Kardashian this spring for promoting detox teas she believed were peddling potentially dangerous products, Teen Vogue reported. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration doesn’t regulate these teas, or dietary supplements like them.
For the record, my interest was piqued by Fit Tea a few years ago, so I tried their 14-day cleanse. Although some people say it makes your more, er, regular, I personally felt no effects. I gave Fit Tea my hard-earned cash to guzzle down a drink that tastes like moss, morning and night.
However, Happy Tea, is different than its sibling Fit Tea for a few reasons. First off, it contains CBD, or cannabidiol, which won’t get you high and is a non-psychoactive ingredient in both hemp and marijuana. The company says the dissolvable drinks contain 10mg of hemp extract, and may "help alleviate stress, decrease anxiety, and minimize inflammation." However, without official oversight of dietary supplements, including this tea, it’s hard to know how well it works. Or if it works at all.
Happy Tea’s founder, Michael Gonzalez, created a free e-book about the tea and his journey to become someone selling it to us. He says that he has suffered from anxiety and severe panic attacks, but getting in his CBD via the tea helped him cope with these issues and improve his mood. He also exercises and eats a healthy diet to help him with his anxiety.
"In the past, I struggled with sticking to a specific plan to combat my anxiety disorder. Many of the blogs and lists I read wanted you to see therapists, chant mantras, and do guided meditations to help you stop stressing, ease your mind, and calm your anxiety," Gonzalez writes in his e-book. "That wasn't going to work for me. It's not my personality to try something and HOPE that it would help. I needed something REAL."
But the definition of “real” is relative. An unsettling video on the Happy Tea website (that personally gives me spooky Babadook book illustration vibes) explains that CBD can help relax you, get rid of pain, and ease stress. However, The Cannabis Herald points out that there isn’t enough clinical research to support the many claims out there about CBD. Although research has shown it can help people deal with problems like opioid addiction, the scientific community isn’t sure about the rest of it. And without federal regulations handed down by the FDA, people creating teas like these can claim almost anything about their products. The FDA has even had to issue warnings to companies who made unsubstantiated claims about CBD helping with conditions such as cancer and Alzheimer’s disease. (Happy Tea hasn't made those kinds of claims.)
Does this mean Happy Tea doesn’t work at all? No, not necessarily, but you should be careful. Many people think we’re onto something with CBD and some report feeling calmed by it — we just need more research. Until then, you can buy Happy Tea if you’d jump off a bridge just because Jenner does, but we don’t know enough about what it can and can’t do for us.