If you’ve been wondering what Sarah Palin — the former Alaska governor who burst onto the political stage in 2008 — has been up to, wonder no longer. She has been selling tea.
Not tea as in gossip, or tea as in the Tea Party — both of which are believable side hustles for the 54-year-old mom of five — but an actual aromatic liquid, this one designed to shed pounds. Palin’s foray into tea-selling came through an Instagram post on Thursday in which the onetime vice presidential hopeful gave a solid endorsement of a “skinny tea” she has been drinking, inspired by her oldest daughter, Bristol.
The post immediately garnered mixed reactions from across the internet, where people expressed either anger or delight over the fact that a woman who once governed the state of Alaska is now suddenly hawking … tea. A piece on Jezebel lambasted the Instagram promotion and the product itself in a piece titled “Sarah Palin Finds New and Perfect Calling Shilling for S*** Tea on Instagram.”
But others, such as Cosmopolitan‘s Alex Rees found the news — albeit strange — invigorating.
— alex rees (@maybealexislost) April 19, 2018
Unusual career path aside, what exactly is this tea Palin’s selling — and should people be buying it?
The tea pictured is made by a company called Teami, a Florida-based wellness brand that runs with the motto “It’s Not Just Tea, It’s a Lifestyle!” The teas, made with “different types of herbs,” are designated for specific things, all of them focused on eliminating waste from the body. There’s a tea for relaxing, a tea for focus, a tea for energy, and a tea for weight loss.
It’s this final one, “skinny tea,” that Palin was promoting on her Instagram, a package filled with 2.3-ounce packs of tea leaves that sells for $29.99 (or less with her discount!). The tea is supposed to be taken each morning in place of coffee and works, according to the site’s section on weight loss, by cleaning out the digestive system. “As the colon is cleansed, it pushes waste out of your system, clearing the way for good nutrient absorption,” it reads. “A clean colon from a detox tea allows waste to pass easily.”
Reviews of the tea echo Palin’s glowing assessment, calling it “amazing” in her photo caption. A mom named Reenie agrees: “This product is amazing! It helps me feel full all day long; I do not have the cravings that I used to have to graze. Skinny Tea has changed my life. I’ve lost 16 pounds in three weeks. I can’t wait to add colon tea.” But the reviewers — and Palin — are far from the only ones who swear by the product. Teami, specifically skinny tea, has another hawker on the internet — one who is admittedly a departure from Palin: Blac Chyna.
In a Feb. 22 Instagram post, the former stripper (who shares a child with Robert Kardashian) posted about her own love of the product.
Health experts, it’s important to note, do not endorse the teas — or agree that they aid weight loss. “In general, it is usually a quick fix, and they are not FDA regulated,” registered dietitian Annie Courto told Philly.com. And, according to the Food and Drug Administration’s website, she’s right, considering the organization specifically calls out detox teas and warns about their potential risk.
Furthermore, Teen Vogue explored in depth with a clinical nutritionist in California named Stella Metsovas. “The golden rule of creating a healthy digestive tract is to never rely on a product for the relief of ailments like constipation, or that believing a supplement is going to detox your gut from harmful bacteria,” Metsovas told Teen Vogue in 2016. “Nothing will magically detox your digestive tract — which includes your colon — unless your diet has a large percentage of plant-based fibers.”
While Teami may not be a magic elixir, it’s certainly keeping influencers busy. So next time devotees go to purchase their fix, they’ve got an interesting choice for the discount code: Palin or Chyna?
Read more from Yahoo Lifestyle:
- The movie that inspired one man to lose 158 pounds — and how he lost the weight
- How one woman battled depression and an eating disorder to lose 160 pounds the healthy way
- The diet that helped one woman lose 100 pounds without exercise