Green tea is already well known for combatting a variety of ailments and helping the body improve itself from within. The tea can help protect against heart diseases, common cold and flu, improve metabolism and help digestion. It can also keep the skin looking younger and fresher and can also keep the cells within the body healthy as well.
However, a recent study on green tea conducted by a group of researchers from Penn State. This article will thus attempt to explain the study conducted on how green tea can kill cancer cells as well as highlight the results and findings of the same.
Green Tea Can Kill Cancer Cells: Study
Some of the most important findings of the study on how green tea can kill cancer cells are highlighted below.
Background to the Study
One of the main reasons behind the numerous benefits that come from consuming green tea is the presence of antioxidants present in it. Antioxidants are of many types of chemicals that can prevent oxidation of molecules within living beings.
These are generally derived from plant-based chemicals called polyphenols which are responsible for bringing these substances into the human body. One of the main types of antioxidants that can be found in the body is epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG). The study conducted by food scientists at Penn State wished to observe whether this compound found in green tea can kill cancer cells present in the mouth.
Scientists have already found that EGCG can cause early cell death in cells when they tested the compound and induced death in five mesothelioma cell lines. These are cells recovered from the inner linings of the lungs and is known to cause an aggressive form of cancer. The death induced by the EGCG is believed to be caused as a result of mitochondrial activities being triggered by the EGCG in the cancer cell, which may lead to its early death.
Furthermore, this action only takes place in cancer cells while leaving other cells unharmed, which is an added advantage. Tannins, which occur in green tea are also believed to aid in this process and hence adds to the benefit of consuming this beverage.
Method of the Study
The food scientists at Penn State decided to study the action of EGCG in oral cancer cells. For this, they harvested the cells in Petri dished and then added EGCG in concentration that may be found in saliva after chewing gum that contained green tea. The researchers collected data, at regular intervals, that contained information about whether the cells were undergoing oxidative stress or antioxidation responses.
This was done by dying the cells with fluorescent dyes and then measuring the mitochondrial function and oxidation stress that was occurring. One of the main factors that researchers were looking at was the presence of the Sirtuin 3 protein.
According to the research team, this protein was extremely important to the whole process. An understanding of how EGCG acts on this protein by possibly turning the production off in cancer cells, and on in regular cells, could hold the key to understanding its effects on different types of cancers.
EGCG can also maintain the healthy nature of the younger cells in the body which may also provide insight into how green tea can kill cancer cells as well as prevent the cells from forming in the first place. EGCG is said to also be able to help prevent the growth and formation of new blood vessels in tumors.
This process is known as Angiogenesis and is the main factor that allows cancer to grow faster as well as spread to other areas of the body. This process is also the primary ways by which cancer cells receive nourishment and oxygen, which aids in their growth and development. Thus, preventing this is another manner by which EGCG can help prevent cancer.
Other Benefits of EGCG
Apart from its newly found benefits to cure cancer, EGCG is believed to help with age-related degenerative diseases as well as improving memory and learning abilities. It is also the primary compound that helps with boosting metabolic activity and metabolism and hence is greatly beneficial when consumed. Though everyone wishes to live a healthy lifestyle, the fast-paced nature of our lives may prevent us from paying attention to the body.
However, with new inventions, it has become simpler to start being healthier. A new, fun, and healthy way to produce green tea is in the form of tea sticks. These inventions need to simply be dipped in water and stirred to prepare a tea of good quality and flavor. A recommended brand that you could try out is CraveNatura’s Green Tea Sticks.
To conclude, while more research and work needs to be carried out, it is possible to state that green tea and its bioactive compound EGCG may hold the cure to cancer cells in the bodies of living organisms. Thus, we hope that this article provides you with an overview of how green tea can kill cancer cells and hence helps you decide whether you will incorporate it into your diet or not.