Botanical name: Camellia sinensis

Common name: Epigallocatechin Gallate (EGCG)

All teas (green, black, and oolong) are derived from the same plant, Camellia sinensis. The difference is in how
the plucked leaves are prepared.
Green tea, unlike black and oolong tea, is not fermented, so the active
constituents remain unaltered in the herb.
The leaves of the tea plant are used both as a social and a medicinal beverage.


The Japanese custom of drinking green tea came from China about 800 AD. The use of tea started when Buddhist monks, who had gone to China for study, returned to Japan bringing tea with them as a medicinal beverage. In the Kamakura era (1191-1333),the monk Eisai stressed the beneficial effects of tea in his book Maintaining Health by Drinking Tea (1211) : "Tea is a miraculous medicine for the maintenance of health. Tea has an extraordinary power to prolong life. Anywhere a person cultivates tea, long life will follow. In ancient and modern times, tea is the elixir that creates the mountain-dwelling immortal." From this passage we can see that green tea has from early times been highly valued as a powerful medication. But in recent years research into the effects of green tea has progressed so far it can now provide scientific confirmation for the legendary saying that "Tea is a miraculous medicine for the maintenance of health." It is becoming increasingly clear that green tea has a broad efficacy in preventing disease. The remainder of this brochure will introduce you to the main points of the research summarized in the "The Components and Healthy Effects of Green Tea.,(Table1)(#1)

(#1) I.Oguni and Y. Hara,"Green tea has many medicinal activities for preventing disease such as cancer, cardio-vascular diseases and diabetes". (published by The Chunichi-shinbun, Nagoya, Japan),PP.1-289 (1990).

Green tea acts as a function food

Discussions of food normally were focussed on its nutritional content and its flavor. Recently, however, more attention is being paid to the role of food in bio-regulating functions. Foods that possess this regulatory function are called "functional food." Dr. Inaba(#20) classifies food by function as shown in Table 9. If we classify green tea and green tea catechin according to this table, they possess the following functions : (1) bio-defensing function by preventing cancer through fortification of the immune system, (2) disease-preventing function by preventing high blood pressure or diabetes, (3) disease-recovery function by inhibiting the rise of cholesterol, (4) physical rhythm-controlling function by stimulating the central nervous system with caffeine and (5) aging-suppressing function by providing the body with antioxidants. Green tea is, therefore, rich in possibilities as a functional food and should prove a popular beverage among the new health conscious generation.

Green tea, with its sweet aroma and eternally fresh taste, has been loved and continuously drunk since its introduction to Japan centuries ago. But modern research has finally started to remove the veil concealing some of its true power as a functional food. Green tea is truly a "miraculous medicine with an extraordinary power to prolong life.

(#2O) H. Inaba.Food Chemicals. 4 (No. 11,) 32 (1988)

Green tea controls high blood pressure

Green tea controls high blood pressure. High blood pressure places a serious burden on the vascular system and contributes to atherosclerosis. Atherosclerosis will in turn precipitate heart disease, stroke and other cardiovascular diseases. The cause of high blood pressure is not yet fully understood, but it is clear that a chemical called angiotensin II plays a role in high blood pressure due to essential hypertension and to arterial stenosis of the kidneys. Blood contains the substance angiotensinogen which is transformed to angiotensin I under action of the enzyme renin in the kidneys. Another enzyme called th "Angiotensin Converting Enzymen (ACE) then changes angiotensin I t angiotensin II, which is an extremely strong vascular constrictor. It is the constriction of the blood vessels caused by this constrictor that leads to high blood pressure.

Dr. Hara(#9) has shown that green tea catechin impedes the action of ACE and suppresses production of angiotensin II. He has also demonstrated that administration of catechin to Spontaneously Hypertensive Rat (SHR) could limit increases in the rats' blood pressure. SHR are rats used as models for human high blood pressure experiments, and their blood pressure at the start of the experiment (when they were five weeks old) was 130 140mmHg. By the age of about 10 weeks, after a diet of normal feed, their blood pressure had risen to more than 200mmHg. But the blood pressure those rats raised with U.5Y5 catechin added to their teed remained belo of those rats raised with 0.5% catechin added to their feed remained below 2OOmmHg. Exchanging the feed of the two rat groups at 16 weeks of age led to a reversal in blood pressure between the two groups (Fig. 3).

These results indicate that green tea catechin has the ability to prevent a rise in blood pressure. If the amount of catechin used in this experiment is converted to the amount of green tea normally drunk by humans, it is equivalent to drinking about 10 moderately large cups of tea per day.
These are surely quite significant results in suggesting, as they do. that the daily consumption of green tea can prevent high blood pressure.

(#9) Y. Hara, T. Matsuzaki and T. Suzuki, Nippon Nogeikagaku Kaishi, 61,803(1987). 49~

Green tea deters food poisoning

Green tea deters food poisoning. It has long been known from experience that green tea has the ability to kill bacteria. Consumption of strong green tea, for example, is often recommended as a good treatment for diarrhea.
Dr. Hara(#13) has shown in his research that catechin is a powerful sterilizing agent for many types of bacteria that cause food poisoning (Table 5). He checked the Minimum Inhibitory Concentration (MIC, ppm) of green tea catechin necessary to stop the growth of various types of food poisoning bacteria and found that (a) Staphylococcus aureus, (b) Vibrio parahaemolyticus, (c) Clostridium peifringens, (d)Bacillus cereus, (e) Plesiomonas shigelloides, (f) Aeromonas sobria and (g)Clostridium botulinum cannot grow in the 1/10 1/2 of 0.1% of catechin in the green tea normally drunk by the Japanese people. But even fairly high concentrations of catechin had no negative effect on the bifidtcs bacillus, which is necessary ~ for proper functioning of the intestinal tract. In addition to this evidence, Prof. Shimamura(#14) has reported that green tea is a very strong sterilant of cholera vibrio and has a strong antitoxic effect on toxins produced by bacteria other than cholera.

These results indicate the antibacterial function of green tea catechin and suggest that it may be effective in preventing food poisoning. Every year throughout the world there are countless incidents of food poisoning.

Wouldn't it been a good idea, given these facts, to enjoy one's meals with several cups of green tea?

(#13) Y. Hara and T. Ishigami, Nippon Shokuhin Kogyo Gakkaishi, 36, 996 (1989). (#14) T. Shimamura et al.. Jpn. f.Bacteriol., 44, 669 (1989).

Green tea fights virus

Dr. Okada(#17) has noted the fact that tobacco growers use an exudat of green tea to prevent crop damage by the tobacco mosaic virus an verified that green tea catechin suppresses the growth of this virus. In addition, Prof. Shimamura(#18) has determined that green tea catechin and the aflavin (an oxidized form of catechin) present in black tea have a strong effect on the influenza virus. Green tea catechin and black tea the aflavi directly act on the influenza virus and inactivate it. It appears, therefore, that gargling with green or black tea is very effective in preventing influenza. This effect is increased by keeping the green tea catechin and the virus in contact as long as possible.

It is also hoped that the antiviral capability of green tea catechin may have some beneficial effect on the AIDS (Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome) virus, which is now the world's most feared infectious disease. Dr. Nakane and Dr. Ono(#19) at the Aichi Cancer Institute have verified the fact that green tea catechin can inhibit the activity of the AIDS virus in laboratory test (Table 8). Although this research is just in its nascent stage, it provides a slight ray of hope that a treatment may someday be found to combat the now unstoppable AIDS virus. Future research advances in this field are expected.

(#17) F. Okada, Chagyo Kenkyu Hokoku, 48, 52 (1978).
(#18) T. Shimamura et al., Lett. APPI. Microbiol., 11, 38 (1990).
(#19) H. Nakane and K. Ono, Biochemistry, 29, 2041 (1990).

Green tea lowers the blood sugar level

About 60 years ago, Dr. Minowada of Kyoto University noticed that sugar in the urine of patients hospitalized for diabetes fell markedly during periods when they participated in chanoyu (Tea Ceremony). He reported that powdered tea of the type used in the traditional Tea Ceremony had the capability of lowering blood sugar. Unfortunately, however, this important report was ignored due to the outbreak of World War II and the subsequent postwar food shortages. But the arrival of the gourmet era in recent years in Japan has led to heightened interest in diabetes and the ability of green tea to reduce blood sugar.

The sugars and carbohydrate in our food are digested mainly in the duodenum, converted there to glucose and then absorbed into the blood. The agent that regulates the intake of blood sugar into the tissues is insulin, a chemical secreted from Langerhans islets on the pancreas. Diabetes is a disease characterized by insufficient secretion or improper functioning of insulin, which hinders the proper absorption of glucose into the tissues and leads to a high concentration of blood sugar that must eventually be excreted into the urine. If this high concentration of blood sugar should continue for a long period, it will affect the vascular system and cause a number of quite serious diseases including atherosclerosis and retinal hemorrhages. Dr. Hara(#10) gave dried green tea catechin in edible form to mice that were subject to hereditary diabetes and verified a lowering of their blood sugar. In parallel experiments, Dr. Shimizu(#11) gave an extract of green tea to mice and demonstrated that it had the ability to lower blood sugar (Table 4). It has also been shown that the polysaccharides in green tea possess the same ability. Although these results come from animal tests, the evidence that green tea catechin and polysaccharides can lower blood sugar In mice may also, in light of Dr. Minowada's old report, apply to humans.

(#10) H. Asai, Y. Kuno, H. Ogawa, Y. Hara and K. Nakamura, Kiso to Rinsshyo, 21, 163 (1987).
(#11) M. Shimizu et al., Yakugaku Zasshi, 108, 964 (1988).

Green tea Prevents cancer

Cancer mortality statistics on Japanese people indicate that the death rate from cancer is significantly lower, for both men and women, i Shizuoka Prefecture. This fact stimulated our interest in cancer prevention and led us to calculate the death rate (Standardized Mortality Ratio) b cancer type for every city, town and village in Shizuoka Prefecture. Based on these death ratio statistics, we created a cancer distribution map of the Prefecture and examined it in detail for trends. We found that areas devoted to green tea production in the central and western regions of Shizuoka Prefecture exhibit a significantly lower death rate for all types of cancer in general and for gastrointestinal cancers such as stomach, esophagus and liver cancer in particular.(#2)We then made a survey to see how the residents of the green tea producing regions, which have such low cancer death rates, drink their tea. The results showed that those who live in areas where green tea is the staple crop tend to drink it daily in rather strong concentrations by frequently refreshing the tea leaves in their pots.(#2,3) From these results we theorized that green tea must be connected in some way with cancer prevention, and we decided to continue our research with animal experiments.

Mice were first inoculated with cancer cells and then studied for the growth of malignancies. One group was given an extract of green tea while another control group was not given such an extract. Comparison of the two groups showed a marked reduction in the growth of tumors among the receiving green tea (Table 2).(#4)In further joint research with Prof. Shu-Jun Cheng of the Cancer Institute, Chinese Academy of Medical Science (Beijing),mice were given substances which, when transformed in the body to cancer-causing chemicals, generate carcinoma in both the esophagus and forestomach. The researchers then proceeded to check if green tea has the ability to inhibit the development of these cancers. Administration of green tea extract did indeed reduce the incidence of cancer to less than 50% (Table 3).(#5)In addition, research at the National Cancer Institute (Tsukiji, Tokyo) has demonstrated that administration of catechin (the main component of green tea tannin) to mice previously given chemicals that induce duodinal cancer can also significantly lower the incidence of cancer. Green tea and its component catechin have, therefore, been shown to reduce the growth as well as the actual generation of cancer.(#3)

From our previous epldemiologlcal research we can estimate that the inhabitants of the midwestern region of Shizuoka Prefecture, where green tea is the staple product and the main beverage, consume as much as 1.0 of crude green tea catechins daily in their green tea. This strongly suggests that green tea catechin plays a role in their low SMR (Standardized Mortality Ratio) for stomach cancer.
We do not yet fully understand the mechanism underlying the generation of cancer, but it involves at least the following two stages ( Fig. 1 This is called the "two-stage theory of cancer development., A substance capable of causing mutations (initiator) first damages DNA in the cell and renders it subject to cancer (initiation). This condition then remains unchanged for some time until another substance, which activates cancer (promoter),leads to the actual growth of a malignancy (promotion). It is clear from recent research that extract of green tea and catechin can markedly inhibit both stages of development(#6)

Even though these results have been gained from animal studies or pure laboratory tests, we think it highly significant that green tea and its component catechin have the ability to prevent cancer. When taken together with the survey that indicates a striking reduction in the cancer death rate in the tea producing regions where the residents are accustomed to drinking quite strong tea by frequent changes of tea leaves, they support the conclusion that green tea may also be a factor in the prevention of human cancer.

(#2)I.Oguni et al., Japanese J. of Nutrition, 47, 31 (1989).
(#3)I.Oguni, Metabolzsm and Disease, 29, 453, (1992).
(#4)I.Oguni et al.Biol.Chem,52,1879(1988)
(#5)I.Oguni and ShuJun Cheng,Annual Report of the Skylark Food Science Institute,No 3,57(1991)
(#6)Y.NAKAMURA etal,PROC.ofInternatiomal Tea-Quality-Human Health Symposium,pp.227-238(Hangzhou,china,November,1987)

Green tea suppresses aging

Oxygen is necessary for human life. But oxygen has two aspects, one beneficial and one malign. The oxygen we breathe is conveyed to every part of the body where it plays a key role in metabolism. But it can also be a very harmful agent in the form of active or free radical oxygen. Active oxygen is a problem because it can combine with anything in the body and oxidize it with consequent destruction of cell membranes, damage to DNA and oxidation of lipids (fats). All of these can lead to diseases like cancer. Here we shall focus on the process by which active oxygen combines with lipids (fats) in the body to create lipid peroxide, that is, lipid with an excessive amount of oxygen.

Lipid peroxide is thought to be a harmful substance which can trigger the diseases such as cancer, cardio-vascular disease and diabetes. Since lipid peroxide is more easily generated and less easily purged as age advances, it tends to accumulate in the body. Lipofuscin, called the *aging pigment,, also accumulates in the body in proportion to age and is considered to be an index of aging. But lipofuscin is itself created by lipid peroxide, which suggests a connection between aging and lipid peroxide. One way to slow aging may, therefore, be to prevent the production and accumulation of active oxygen and lipid peroxide in the body. It has been shown, for example, that the higher the concentration of the powerful antioxidants vitamins E and C in the bodies of animals, the longer they live. This suggests that active consumption of agents that are effective antioxidants will restrain the aging process.

We already know that green tea is rich in those vitamins that possess this antioxidizing capability. In addition, Prof. Okuda(#12) has recently demonstrated that catechin in green tea is a far stronger antioxidant than vitamin E (about 20 times stronger in fact). These results come from laboratory tests only, and we must wait for further research to confirm a direct cause and effect relationship between the antioxidizing function of green tea and the retardation of aging. But the very fact that green tea contains a powerful antioxidant is a strong foundation for believing it can help control aging.

(#12)T.OKUDAet al.,Chem.Pharm.Bull.,31,1625(1983).

Green tea stops cavlties

Dental techniques have improved greatly in the past few years, but once teeth have been damaged by cavities they can never be restored to their original condition. It is of the highest priority, therefore, to prevent cavities from developing in the first place. By the end of the 19th century, it had been determined that cartes are caused by cariogenic bacteria. The cariogenic bacteria first produce non-watersoluble glucan from sugar or other foods, and this glucan adheres to the tooth enamel as hard plaque. Next, they feed on sugar to generate acids such as lactic acid in the plaque. These acids then dissolve the tooth enamel. That in brief is the mechanism of cavity production.

To prevent cavities it is necessary, then, to keep plaque off the teeth by brushing an important tool in good dental hygiene. But according to experiments by Dr. Hattori(#15) green tea catechin can suppress the process (glucosyl transferase) by which cariogenic bacteria create glucan (Table 6).Other experiments by Dr. Sakanaka(#16) have verified that green tea catechin can destroy cariogenic bacteria (Table 7). That is, it is antibacterial. Clearly, then, green tea catechin not only suppresses the formation of plaque by cariogenic bacteria but also kills the bacteria themselves.

It has been known for some time that small amounts of fluorine can strengthen teeth and help prevent cavities. For this reason, many cities add fluorine to their drinking water. Green tea, however, contains natural fluorine and is thought to help prevent cavities. That may explain those reports that show a reduction in cavities among grade school children who drank green tea after lunch.

Halitosis or bad breath embarrasses many people. It is caused by a number of bacteria that flourish in the mouth. Green tea can also kill other oral bacteria besides those causing cartes. It has, therefore, some ability to prevent bad breath by destroying the cause of bad breath. Why not enjoy gleaming white teeth and a fresh breath by drinking green tea?

(#15) M. Hattori et al., Chem. Pharm.. Bull., 38, 717 (1990).
(#16) S. Sakanaka et al.. Agric. Biol. Chem., 53, 2307 (1989).

Green tea restricts the increase of blood cholesterol

Cholesterol is always indicted as the "bad guy for causing a wide range of diseases in adults. But it is a chemical present in all animals and crucial in human bodies for such important processes as the manufacture of cell membranes and the adhesion of cells. There are two types of cholesterol: one is the so-called bad cholesterol (LDL and VLDL- cholesterol) that accumulates in tissues and the other is the "good, cholesterol (HDL-cholesterol) that collects excessive cholesterol from the tissues. If the amount of bad cholesterol in the blood increases too much, it is deposited on the walls of blood vessels and can lead to atherosclerosis. Atherosclerosis in conjunction with high blood pressure can cause myocardial infarction and cerebral infarction. Good cholesterol, however, prevents atherosclerosis and must exist in a proper balance with bad cholesterol for proper health.

Prof. Muramatsu,(#7) has demonstrated in experiments with rats that green tea catechin restricts the excessive buildup of blood cholesterol. When rats were fed a diet high in fat, the amount of bad cholesterol in the blood increased rapidly. But the addition of only 1% catechin to the food checked the increase of bad cholesterol (LDL) with only minimal effect on the amount of good cholesterol (HDL)(Fig. 2). In another series of experiments, rats fed normal food with catechin exhibited no decrease in blood cholesterol and remained unaffected by the supplement. We can see from these results that green tea catechin acts to limit the excessive rise in blood cholesterol. Recently Dr. Goto(#8) reported similar results for human blood cholesterol.

(#7) K. Muramatsu and Y. Hara, J. Nutr. Sci. Vitaminol, 32, 613 (1986). (#8) K. Goto, S. Kanaya and Y. Hara, Proc. of the International Symp. on Tea Science, 314 (Shizuoka, Japan;August,1991)

Green tea refreshes the body

Tea contains caffeine which, when taken in the proper quantity, simulates every organ in the body. It has a particularly strong effect on the central nervous system, heart and liver. This reaction is even more pronounced when one is sleepy or tired. A cup of tea or coffee will help clear a dull mind after rising in the morning or after a prolonged period without sleep. The power to stimulate and awaken the mind comes from caffeine. It is also said that the amount of caffeine contained in normal servings of green tea can stimulate the skeletal muscles and facilitate muscular contraction. For this reason, it is quite helpful to drink tea or coffee in the middle of work to refresh the mind and restore the body. We find it noteworthy that there is some scientific support for such old customs as the afternoon snack, coffee break or tea time ritual.

The caffeine in green tea is mostly extracted in the first infusion of the leaves, but the quantities in subsequent infusions will still be greater than coffee. And since green tea caffeine combines with catechin in the brewing water, its action is said to be rather milder than other caffeine-containing beverages. Even so, some people are sensitive to caffeine and cannot sleep if they drink green tea before going to bed. It is safer for such individuals to drink a weak green tea after dinner.
Why not treat yourself to a zestful day by enjoying the positive effects of mild caffeine with the sweet aroma of green tea?

The Origin of Japanese Tea

Although the origin of tea in Japan is not clear, it is said that in the Nara/Heian era the custom of drinking tea was brought by monks from China, who also brought seeds of tea trees.

As for the origin of tea trees, it is also said that there were native tea trees in Japan.

Among old documents, tea was mentioned in Kigodokkyou, Kansoujirui and Koujikongen in the early Nara era. However, it is not clear whether the tea was produced in Japan or brought from China.

There is a Chinese poem in Kyoukokushuu which support the hypothesis that we had native tea trees in Japan. A court lady of the Saga Emperor wrote: "she boiled the spring water and made some tea. The tea with a little bit of salt tasted better." Also there is a poem saying that the Taijou Emperor had tea with the monk Kaikou, seeing Kuukai off when he went back to the mountain. From these we can guess that the custom of drinking tea had spread among the upper-class at that time.

Many poems written about tea can be found in Ryouunshuu and Bunka Syuureisyuu, written in the same era as Kyoukokushuu.

In Hiyoshiyashiro shintou himituki it is stated that Saichou planted the tea seeds he brought from China in the area of Hiyoshiyashiro. However, Kokon Yourankou-no-Kusakibu, Cha-no-Seigo, edited by Yashiro Hirotaka and others in the Edo period, quotes as follows;

"The book seems to be written by Maeda Kain. Since the book was written much later than the era of Denkyou Daishi, there is no evidence to prove that Denkyou Daishi planted tea in this country and did so in Uji, Toganoo. Thus, we conclude that the story is not fact. Also, according to Nihon Chagyou Hattatusi by Ooishi Sadao, the tea tree in Hiyoshi was investigated and found not to be of Chinese origin. Does this mean that someone later planted a new tea tree after the original one died?

Further, in Kokon Yourankou it is stated "we do not find any literature saying that Senkou Kokushi (Eizai) and Myoukei Syounin loved drinking tea, thus, we should conclude that the origin of tea in Japan mentioned in Nihon Kouki begins with the tea brought from China in Kounin-nen which was given to Nanto Gomyouhoushitei by the monk Eichyu of Soufukuji in Oumi country.

Exerpt from Cha-no-Daijiten

by Yuusuke Kubokawa and Keiichi Fukushima

Interesting Tea Information:

Green tea has high levels of polyphenols which act as
anti-oxidants, blocking harmful molecules (free radicals) in the body

Drinking green tea has been shown to:

- Protect against heart disease by regulating cholesterol and preventing clots
- Guard against oxidants that damage the immune system
- Help thwart various types of cancer
- Help suppress the growth of tumors
- Reduce cavities since it is a great source of fluoride.

Lowers total cholesterol and LDL (bad)-cholesterol levels
Increases HDL (good)-cholesterol levels
Reduces blood pressure
Lowers blood sugar
Acts as "blood thinner"
Reduces the risk of cancer
Reduces the risk of heart attack
Decreases the risk of stroke
Decrease the risk of developing rheumatoid arthritis
Protects against Parkinson's disease
Enhances immune function
Acts as an antibacterial and antiviral agent
Helps burn extra calories
Prevents dental cavities and gum disease
Builds stronger bones
Boosts longevity

Botanical name: Camellia sinensis

Common name: Epigallocatechin Gallate (EGCG)

All teas (green, black, and oolong) are derived from the same plant, Camellia sinensis. The difference is in how
the plucked leaves are prepared. Green tea, unlike black and oolong tea, is not fermented, so the active
constituents remain unaltered in the herb.
The leaves of the tea plant are used both as a social and a medicinal beverage.

Green tea has been used in connection with the following conditions

Rating Health Concerns


Colon cancer (reduces risk)

High cholesterol


Tooth decay

Weight loss

Breast cancer (risk reduction)

Crohn’s disease

Hemochromatosis (iron overload)

High triglycerides


Immune function


Lung cancer (risk reduction)

Reliable and relatively consistent scientific data showing a substantial health benefit.
Contradictory, insufficient, or preliminary studies suggesting a health benefit or minimal health benefit.
An herb is primarily supported by traditional use, or the herb or supplement has little scientific
support and/or minimal health benefit.

Historical or traditional use (may or may not be supported by scientific studies)
According to Chinese legend, tea was discovered accidentally by an emperor 4,000 years ago.
Since then, Traditional Chinese Medicine has recommended green tea for headaches,
body aches and pains, digestion, depression, immune enhancement, detoxification,
as an energizer, and to prolong life.

Active constituents

Green tea contains volatile oils, vitamins, minerals, and caffeine, but the primary constituents
of interest are the polyphenols, particularly the catechin called epigallocatechin gallate
(EGCG). The polyphenols are believed to be responsible for most of green tea’s roles
in promoting good health.

Green tea has been shown to mildly lower total cholesterol levels and improve the cholesterol profile
(decreasing LDL “bad” cholesterol and increasing HDL “good” cholesterol) in most,2 3 4 5 but not
all,6 studies. Green tea may also promote cardiovascular health by making platelets in the blood less sticky.

Green tea has also been shown to protect against damage to LDL (“bad”) cholesterol caused by
7 Consumption of green tea increases antioxidant activity in the blood.8 Oxidative damage to
LDL can promote atherosclerosis. While population studies have suggested that consumption of
green tea is associated with protection against atherosclerosis,9 the evidence is still preliminary.

Several animal and test tube studies have demonstrated an anticancer effect of polyphenols from
green tea.10 11 12 In one of these studies, a polyphenol called catechin from green tea effectively
inhibited metastasis (uncontrolled spread) of melanoma (skin cancer) cells.13 The polyphenols in
green tea have also been associated with reduced risk of several types of cancer in humans.14 15 16
However, some human studies have found no association between green tea consumption and
decreased cancer risk.17 18

In a double-blind trial, people with leukoplakia (a pre-cancerous oral condition) took 3 grams orally
per day of a mixture of whole green tea, green tea polyphenols, and green tea pigments orally, and also
painted a mixture of the tea on their lesions three times daily for six months.19 As compared to the
placebo group, those in the green tea group had significant decreases in the pre-cancerous condition.

Compounds in green tea, as well as black tea, may reduce the risk of dental caries.20 Human
volunteers rinsing with an alcohol extract of oolong tea leaves before bed each night for four
days had significantly less plaque formation, but similar amounts of plaque-causing bacteria,
compared to those with no treatment.21

Green tea polyphenols have been shown to stimulate the production of several immune system cells,
and have topical antibacterial properties—even against the bacteria that cause dental plaque.22 23 24

One study found that intake of 10 cups or more of green tea per day improved blood test results,
indicating protection against liver damage
.25 Further studies are needed to determine if
taking green tea helps those with liver diseases.

Tea flavonoids given by capsule reduced fecal odor and favorably altered the gut bacteria in elderly
Japanese with feeding tubes living in nursing homes.26 The study was repeated in bedridden elderly
not on feeding tubes, and green tea was again shown to improve their gut bacteria.27 These studies
raise the possibility of using green tea in other settings where gut bacteria are disturbed, such as
after taking antibiotics. Further studies are needed to clarify the role of green tea in this respect, however.

High-tannin tea has been shown to reduce the need for blood removal from people with iron overload,
or hemochromatosis, in an open study.28 The tea had to be taken with meals and without lemon or milk
to be effective. Tea is believed to help in hemochromatosis by preventing iron absorption.

How much is usually taken?

Much of the research documenting the health benefits of green tea is based on the amount of green tea
typically consumed in Asian countries—about 3 cups
(750 ml) per day (providing 240–320 mg of polyphenols).29

However, other research suggests as much as 10 cups (2,500 ml) per day is necessary to obtain noticeable
benefits from green tea ingestion.30 31 To brew green tea, 1 teaspoon (5 grams) of green tea leaves are
combined with 1 cup (250 ml) of boiling water and steeped for three minutes. Decaffeinated tea is recommended
to reduce the side effects associated with caffeine, including anxiety and insomnia. Tablets and capsules
containing standardized extracts of polyphenols, particularly EGCG, are available. Some provide up
to 97% polyphenol content—which is equivalent to drinking 4 cups (1,000 ml) of tea. Many of these
standardized products are decaffeinated.

Are there any side effects or interactions?

Green tea is generally free of side effects. The most common adverse effects reported from consuming
large amounts (several cups per day) of green tea are insomnia, anxiety, and other symptoms caused
by the caffeine content in the herb.

An extract of green tea taken by healthy women with a meal inhibited the absorption of non-heme iron
(e.g., the form of iron in plant foods) by 26%.32 Frequent use of green tea could, in theory, promote the
development of iron deficiency in susceptible individuals.

Are there any drug interactions?

Certain medicines may interact with green tea. Refer to drug interactions for a list of those medicines.

1. Graham HN. Green tea composition, consumption, and polyphenol chemistry. Prev Med 1992;21:334–50.

2. Kono S, Shinchi K, Ikeda N, et al. Green tea consumption and serum lipid profiles: A cross-sectional study in Northern Kyushu, Japan. Prev Med 1992;21:526–31.

3. Yamaguchi Y, Hayashi M, Yamazoe H, et al. Preventive effects of green tea extract on lipid abnormalities in serum, liver and aorta of mice fed an atherogenic diet. Nip Yak Zas 1991;97:329–37.

4. Sagesaka-Mitane Y, Milwa M, Okada S. Platelet aggregation inhibitors in hot water extract of green tea. Chem Pharm Bull 1990;38:790–3.

5. Stensvold I, Tverdal A, Solvoll K, et al. Tea consumption. Relationship to cholesterol, blood pressure, and coronary and total mortality. Prev Med 1992;21:546–53.

6. Tsubono Y, Tsugane S. Green tea intake in relation to serum lipid levels in middle-aged Japanese men and women. Ann Epidemiol 1997;7:280–4.

7. Serafini M, Ghiselli A, Ferro-Luzzi A. In vivo antioxidant effect of green tea in man. Eur J Clin Nutr 1996;50:28–32.

8. Benzie IF, Szeto YT, Strain JJ, Tomlinson B. Consumption of green tea causes rapid increase in plasma antioxidant power in humans. Nutr Cancer 1999;34:83–7.

9. Sasazuki S, Komdama H, Yoshimasu K, et al. Relation between green tea consumption and severity of coronary atherosclerosis among Japanese men and women. Ann Epidemiol 2000;10:401–8.

10. Suganuma M, Okabe S, Sueoka N, et al. Green tea and cancer chemoprevention. Mutat Res 1999;428:339–44.

11. Weisberger JH, Rivenson A, Garr K, et al. Tea, or tea and milk, inhibit mammary gland and colon carcinogenesis in rats. Cancer Lett 1997;114:323–7.

12. Yang CS, Lee MJ, Chen L, Yang GY. Polyphenols as inhibitors of carcinogenesis. Environ Health Perspect 1997;105(Suppl 4):971–6 [review].

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As you can see, I am very excited about green tea being one of the main ingredients in VEMMA.

If you would like to try some high quality green tea at a great bargain price I would like to share
this site with you and suggest you try out the green tea bags.
Only takes 1 tea bag to 1 qt of water for iced tea. Can make hot tea too of course