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Green tea

Green tea intake may reduce the risk of gynecologic cancers

Tuesday, May 08, 2012 by: Jonathan Benson, staff writer
Tags: green tea, cancer, molecular nutrition

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(NaturalNews) Before undergoing a fermentation process that turns it into the black tea widely enjoyed by millions of Americans today, green tea, also known as Camellia sinensis, naturally contains a variety of antiviral and anti-cancer compounds with many proven health benefits. And a recent review published in the journal Molecular Nutrition & Food Research explains that consuming green tea can specifically help prevent against ovarian, endometrial, cervical, and various other forms of gynecologic cancer.

Green tea is gaining worldwide attention for its myriad of catechins, flavonoids, polyphenols, and other nutritive compounds that each possess their own unique healing capabilities. Green tea polyphenols, for instance, have proven chemo-protective properties, while green tea catechins have proven antiviral and immuno-modulating properties. Together, these compounds synergistically fortify the body and protect it against the development and spread of malignant cancer cells.

After combing the PubMed database for all English-language studies pertaining to green tea intake and the development of gynecologic cancers published between 1962 and 2010, a research team from the Colorado State University (CSU) Department of Environmental and Radiological Health Sciences discovered a definitive relationship between the two. Four case-control studies in particular demonstrated that green tea intake is inversely related to ovarian cancer risk.

"During the past three decades, at least 17 epidemiologic studies have evaluated tea and ovarian cancer risk; however, only four case-control studies (one in Australia, two in the United States, and one in China) have published results specifically for green tea intake and ovarian cancer risk," says the study. "The combined odds ratios (ORs) from those four studies show a significant inverse association between green tea intake and risk for ovarian cancer."

Besides protecting against ovarian cancer, green tea may also prevent against the human papillomavirus (HPV), which some say is linked to the development of cervical and other invasive genital cancers. Though evidence from published studies is not conclusive, it appears as though green tea catechin ointment may provide positive benefits in treating premalignant cervical lesions and external genital warts (EWGs) as well.

Green tea protects against other forms of cancer, too

Gynecologic cancers are not the only types of cancer that respond to green tea, however. Generally, green tea compounds inhibit the formation of all cancer-causing compounds, and also help expel them from the body. Even the American Cancer Society (ACS) now admits, albeit in a round-about way, that green tea helps protect against cancer by blocking new cancer-feeding blood vessels from forming in the body (http://www.cancer.org).

"The forms of cancer that appear to be best prevented by green tea are cancers of the gastrointestinal tract, including cancers of the stomach, small intestine, pancreas, and colon; lung cancer, estrogen-related cancers, including most breast cancers; and prostate cancer," writes Michael Murray, N.D., and Joseph Pizzorno, N.D., in their book The Encyclopedia of Healing Foods.

When consuming green tea products, be sure to consume only the organic varieties, as conventional varieties can contain high levels of pesticide residues, as well as fluoride content. All tea leaves, in fact, tend to uptake fluoride compounds from the soil, which is why it is important to seek out varieties that are grown in low- or no-fluoride areas.

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