Green Tea

Camellia sinensis, the plant used to derive black tea is also used for green tea. The difference is that green tea is not fermented. Many scientists believe that green tea contains substances called polyphenols which give it its anti-cancer properties.

Green Tea and Cancer

  • Of all the polyphenols, catechin epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG) has been found to interfere with several cell-replication processes and even induce tumor cell death or apoptosis. 
  • Some studies have also shown that EGCG can also slow down the formation of blood vessels around the tumors.
  • Another polyphenol, Epigallocatechin (ECG), has been found to stop leukemic cells from multiplying in lab studies. It also has antioxidant properties.
  • EGCG present in Green tea can prevent or inhibit cancer in humans.
  • EGCG also enhances the effectiveness of treatments like radiation therapy, some chemotherapy drugs, and other cancer treatments.

Before you start self-medicating yourself with Green Tea, it is important to note the following:

  • The polyphenols in Green Tea can inhibit the effects of certain chemotherapy drugs like bortezomib (Velcade®) which is mainly used in multiple myeloma.
  • Usually, 3-9 cups a day is considered as a safe range of green tea consumption.
  • Some substance in green tea might interfere with the absorption of iron.

References & More Information:

  1. Credit: Beyond Conventional Care Therapies
  2. Integrative Oncology Cancer Care
  3. Green Tea (Camellia Sinensis). Complementary and Alternative Medicine for Cancer (Cam-Cancer).
  4. Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center’s About Herbs: Green Tea. August 16, 2017. Viewed September 20, 2018.
  5. Fujiki H, Sueoka E, Rawangkan A, Suganuma M. Human cancer stem cells are a target for cancer prevention using (-)-epigallocatechin gallate. Journal of Cancer Research and Clinical Oncology. 2017 Sep 23
  6. Chu C, Deng J, Man Y, Qu Y. Green tea extracts epigallocatechin-3-gallate for different treatments. Biomedical Research International. 2017;2017:5615647
  7. Budisan L1 Gulei D et al. Dietary intervention by phytochemicals and their role in modulating coding and non-coding genes in cancer. International Journal of Molecular Sciences. 2017 Jun 1;18(6). pii: E1178.
  8. Le CT, Leenders WPJ, Molenaar RJ, van Noorden CJF. Effects of the green tea polyphenol epigallocatechin-3-gallate on glioma: a critical evaluation of the literature. Nutrition and Cancer. 2018 Apr;70(3):317-333.
  9. Encouse B. Golden, Philip Y. Lam, Adel Kardosh, Kevin J. Gaffney, Enrique Cadenas, Stan G. Louie, Nicos A. Petasis, Thomas C. Chen and Axel H. Schönthal. Green tea polyphenols block the anticancer effects of bortezomib and other boronic acid–based proteasome inhibitors. Blood 2009 113:5927-5937; doi:

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