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Is Nestea Bad For You?



Short answer

Nestea is a commonly consumed commercially made ice tea that is owned by Coca-Cola. While tea can be very beneficial to your overall health, Nestea is loaded with sugar, and should not be consumed regularly.



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Long answer

Iced tea and other bottled beverages are among some of the most popular drinks seen in the United States today. These drinks are readily available and unfortunately introduced to very young children which increase their risk of becoming addicted to sugary beverages long-term. Nestea is a popular drink that many may believe to be a healthier option than choosing a bottle of soda.

Although you may be thinking you are just grabbing a bottle of tea, you will be amazed to know that Nestea barely contains any tea at all. While the ingredients seen in the lemon and peach variations of Nestea are not incredibly harmful to the body, it is the sugar content you will want to watch out for. It is also difficult to determine what exactly is in a bottle of Nestea since some of the ingredients are listed as “natural flavorings”.

While there are other beverages on the market that are more damaging to the body than Nestea, such as beverages that contain things like high fructose corn syrup and carcinogenic compounds, Nestea still ranks on the side of unhealthy due to the sugar content. If you are consuming Nestea you may be thinking that this is just a beverage infused with tea. The truth is, Nestea only contains 0.1% black tea in each bottle, in the form of black tea extract! (1) Not only is it difficult to consider Nestea a tea beverage at all, Nestea ice tea as a whole is not good for your overall health. The benefits that come from tea come from the tea leaves themselves, unprocessed in their natural state. Manufactured iced tea such as Nestea contains a minimal amount of tea that has been processed leading to a lack of true health benefits you would typically obtain from a cup of black, or green tea.

Nestea contains many other ingredients other than tea including sugar as the second ingredient, at 12 grams of sugar per serving! Many of the Nestea bottles contain more than one serving, so in just one bottle you may be taking in over 20 something grams of sugar. Sugar is incredibly toxic to the body, and can cause sugar dependence, digestive distress, an increased risk of developing diabetes, and even cancer.

Nestea also contains “natural flavorings” which is a very broad description of numerous ingredients that could be placed under this label. When you hear the word natural ingredients, or natural flavor you may think that this is a better option than consuming a beverage with artificial ingredients. The scary thing about natural flavoring is that although it is considered natural, natural flavors, just like artificial flavors are made by “flavorists” in a lab by using natural chemicals. (1) There are far too many gray areas when it comes to the term natural, that natural flavoring may not be so natural after all. If you are looking to enjoy a nice cup of tea, your best bet is to make your own tea and control how much sugar goes in it.

Possible short-term side effects

  • digestive upset
  • blood sugar spikes

Possible long-term side effects

  • dental decay
  • sugar dependency
  • caffeine addiction
  • weight gain
  • diabetes
  • heart disease
  • cancer

Ingredients to be aware of

  • sugar
  • "natural flavorings"

Healthier alternatives

  • organic green tea with a squeeze of lemon

Our Wellness Pick (what is this?)

Pure Leaf Iced Tea

  • Unsweetened real tea
  • No added sugar
  • Natural refreshment
  • Convenient pack of 12
Learn More!

Thank you for your feedback!

Written by Desmond Richard
Published on: 06-30-2016
Last updated: 12-15-2023

Thank you for your feedback!

Written by Desmond Richard
Published on: 06-30-2016
Last updated: 12-15-2023

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