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Drink Up!

Five Cups of Green Tea (or More!) Billed as Best Defense from Cancer, Says Japanese Research

As many as five cups of green tea or more per day is believed to be the best defense from cancer.

As many as five cups of green tea or more per day is believed to be the best defense from cancer.

If you’re looking to cut back on your five cups of coffee a day but are at a loss for what to replace your coffee-fill with, green tea is the perfect substitution solution.

Moderation in all things may typically be the best route to all-around health, but when it comes to green tea consumption, moderation does not equal disease prevention.  In fact, as many as five cups of green tea or more – clearly not a moderate amount – is believed to be the best defense from cancer.

The latest study to tout the benefits of green tea hails from the Tohoku School of Medicine based in Japan, a country whose population is awash in green tea consumption (the most commonly consumed beverage in a country of 127 million).

Charting how green tea affected cancer diagnoses of the nearly 42,000 men and women involved required a food frequency questionnaire, which was administered to the participants at the start of the nine-year study.  The study’s researchers followed up with the participants throughout, charting both their health and their diets to see if what, if anything, changed.

In that nine-year period, things did change for about 320 of the participants.  One hundred and ninety three of the men and women involved were stricken with blood cancer, and another 119 were stricken with a cancer of the lymph nodes.

When researchers looked at what the participants ate and drank over the near decade-long study, they found some commonalities in the drinking decisions of cancer-stricken participants and those unaffected.

Not so much what they drank, though, but rather how much.

Virtually all of the participants drank at least one cup of green tea per day, but the people who drank five cups or more were 40 percent less likely to be diagnosed with blood cancer and about 50 percent less likely to be diagnosed with cancer of the lymph nodes.

The Japanese study – published in the American Journal of Epidemiology – does not go so far as to say there’s a causal relationship between green tea consumption and cancer diagnosis (i.e. that drinking more directly impacts the risk of being diagnosed with cancer), but it might as well have, for this study is the latest one to be added to the scores of studies gone by that link cancer prevention with green tea consumption.  Past studies have linked green tea consumption to ovarian cancer prevention, prostate cancer prevention, bladder cancer prevention, breast cancer prevention, even lung cancer prevention (the deadliest form of cancer).

The study did not make any conclusions as to what component of green tea has anti-cancer properties, but past studies indicate its likely green tea’s high polyphenol content.  Besides green tea leaves, polyphenols are found in the skins of various fruits and vegetables and are extolled for their disease-fighting prowess, Alzheimer’s and heart disease among them.

There are many green teas from which to choose, some every bit as good as others.  Always opt for organically brewed tea, paying special attention to its “Sell By” date.  For the sake of taste – not to mention nutrition – you don’t want anything that’s been sitting on the shelf unopened for more than six months.  The further the “Sell By” date is from the date in which you’re purchasing, the better.  Once opened, the shelf-life reduces even further.

Sources:
whfoods.com
cia.gov
o-cha.com
nutraingredients.com

Related Posts

  1. Green Tea Associated with Lower Prostate Cancer Risk
  2. Attention Coffee Drinkers
  3. Study: Breast Cancer Risk Increases with Each Drink among Women
  4. Green Tea: Great for Prostate
  5. Chinese Medicine to Prevent Sarcoma
  


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