British Journal of Nutrition

Research Article

Effects of green tea on weight maintenance after body-weight loss

Eva M. R. Kovacsa1, Manuela P. G. M. Lejeunea1, Ilse Nijsa1 and Margriet S. Westerterp-Plantengaa1 c1

a1 Department of Human Biology, Maastricht University, Maastricht, The Netherlands


The present study was conducted to investigate whether green tea may improve weight maintenance by preventing or limiting weight regain after weight loss of 5 to 10% in overweight and moderately obese subjects. The study had a randomised, parallel, placebo-controlled design. A total of 104 overweight and moderately obese male and female subjects (age 18–60 years; BMI 25–35kg/m2) participated. The study consisted of a very-low-energy diet intervention (VLED; 2·1MJ/d) of 4 weeks followed by a weight-maintenance period of 13 weeks in which the subjects received green tea or placebo. The green tea contained caffeine (104mg/d) and catechins (573mg/d, of which 323mg was epigallocatechin gallate). Subjects lost 6·4 (sd 1·9) kg or 7·5 (sd 2·2) % of their original body weight during the VLED (P<0·001). Body-weight regain was not significantly different between the green tea and the placebo group (30·5 (sd 61·8) % and 19·7 (sd 56·9)%, respectively). In the green tea treatment, habitual high caffeine consumption was associated with a higher weight regain compared with habitual low caffeine consumption (39 (sd 17) and 16 (sd 11)%, respectively; P<0·05). We conclude that weight maintenance after 7·5% body-weight loss was not affected by green tea treatment and that habitual caffeine consumption affected weight maintenance in the green tea treatment.

(Received February 14 2003)

(Revised September 22 2003)

(Accepted November 07 2003)


c1 *Corresponding author: Dr M. S. Westerterp-Plantenga, fax +31 43 3670976, email M.Westerterp@HB.UNIMAAS.NL