Hot or cold, it’s good for you! Excessively sweetened? Now that’s a different story!
In case you haven’t heard, Green Tea is on the American Institute for Cancer Research list of Foods that Fight Cancer.
What is Tea?
500 year old green tea fields, Boseong, Jeollanam-do, South Korea (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
With all the different types of tea products out there, it’s important to know what the definition of real tea is. True tea comes from the Camellia sinensis plant. These teas are classified as:
Other types of “tea” that you find in the grocery store are actually herbal infusions and do not include any tea leaves. These include:
- raspberry zinger
- lemon grass
- “herbal” tea
Then there are combinations which include some of the true tea leaf and some flower, herb or spice with it. These include:
- Chai Tea
- Jasmine Green Tea
- Earl Grey
Why is Tea Good for Cancer Prevention?
There are so many components of tea that are beneficial for health! Things that you will never find in a pill, that’s for sure! Two very potent antioxidants are found in tea, polyphenols and flavonoids.
According to the American Institute for Cancer Research, “one class of flavonoids called catechins has recently become the focus of widespread study for their anti-cancer potential. Tea is the best source of catechins in the human diet, and green tea contains about three times the quantity of catechins found in black tea”.
In addition, population level studies have shown regular usage of green tea with lower risk for bladder, colon, stomach, pancreatic and esophageal cancers. Although population studies do not show cause and effect, they can give us a picture of where to start when designing future studies.
The good news? There’s no risk to drinking tea! That is unless you add too much sugar to it!
Not enough evidence for you?
(Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Check out this list of research studies on Black and Green Tea: http://preventcancer.aicr.org/site/News2?keywords=tea&submit=Go&scope=this&news_iv_ctrl=1131&cmd=search&entry=true
What About Bottled Tea?
Are bottled tea drinks as beneficial as brewed at home tea bags? That is a great question. I am asked a lot and of course, I have an opinion.
It’s a topic for my next article, so stay tuned! In the mean time, share your favorite tea on our Facebook Page!