Tea flavonoids act as potent antioxidants and have been shown to induce cancer cell death and growth while bolstering the body's immune system defenses against the disease.
According to a study published in the latest issue of Archives of Internal Medicine*, black tea consumption is inversely associated with the risk of ovarian cancer. This population-based study followed over 61,000 Swedish women aged 40-76 over a 15-year period, and noted a dose-response relationship between tea consumption and incidence of ovarian cancer. Compared to women who reported not drinking tea, those who drank two or more cups per day had a 46 percent lower risk of developing ovarian cancer.
The Iowa Women's Cohort study, conducted in the U.S., also suggests that weekly consumption of tea is associated with a reduced risk of ovarian cancer.
"The size of this study helps build a case that tea flavonoids have the ability to help protect against cancer in a varieties of ways," said Douglas Balentine, Ph.D., Director Nutrition Sciences Unilever North America. "Tea flavonoids act as potent antioxidants and have been shown to induce cancer cell death and growth while bolstering the body's immune system defenses against the disease."
Cancer is a multifactorial disease, but it is clear that diet can play a role in helping to reduce the risk of many types of cancer.
* Larsson SC, Wolk A. Tea Consumption and Ovarian Cancer Risk in a Population-Based Cohort.
Arch Intern Med. Dec 12/26 2005;165.
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