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February 17, 2013

Surprising effects of green tea on cancer

You might want to consider switching your black tea to green based on two recent human clinical studies into the anti-cancer effects of catechins, antioxidants found in green tea leaves.
Prostate cancer results
A study published in the journal Cancer Research showed that men who supplemented with 600 mg a day of green tea catechins exhibited a preventive effect in the transition from pre-malignant prostate lesions to full blown prostate cancer. Only 3% developed prostate cancer, compared to 30% in the group not taking catechins. The catechins group also had consistently lower PSA levels.

Breast cancer study
In a study reported by the American Association for Cancer Research, a group of women diagnosed with hormone-receptor negative breast cancer were given various doses of green tea catechins (400, 600 or 800 mg, twice daily) or a placebo for a period of six months. The green tea catechins encouraged cancer cell suicide (a good thing!) and inhibited signaling pathways within cancer cells linked to the spread of tumours.

How much?
Although animal studies have shown that high doses of catechins may damage the liver, humans have not shown liver damage at dosages used in the studies above.

Hepatologists suggest not supplementing with more than 10 mg of catechins per kilogram of body weight, daily. For green tea drinkers, 10 cups per day is the recommended limit.
Supplement containing 600 mg of green tea extract could be a typical dose. It also contains chromium and hydroxycitric acid. The synergistic effect of these three ingredients has been shown to help keep blood sugar and triglycerides in the ideal range, burn excess body fat and enhance lean mass when combined with exercise and adequate protein intake
Which type?
  •  White tea is very unprocessed, and likewise there's more beneficial chemicals or compounds associated with it.
  • Green tea is a little bit more processed, it's been steamed a little bit more; oxidation of the chemicals occur.
  • Black tea is the most processed of the tea leaves. The chemicals become more oxidized and there's fewer reported benefits from black tea than green or white tea.

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