Green Tea May Prevent Colon and Rectal Cancer

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A large new public health research study from China suggests that drinking green tea at least 3 times per week may cut colorectal cancer risk in half, but only among nonsmokers.


As I have written about in my bestselling book, A Cancer Prevention Guide for the Human Race, green tea has been consumed for several thousand years now, and the health benefits attributed to this ancient beverage have been numerous. Unfortunately, the published research findings regarding green tea’s claimed health benefits continue to be quite contradictory, including in the area of cancer prevention research.

A newly published public health study from China, which appears in the journal Carcinogenesis, adds to previous studies that have suggested a favorable role for green tea in cancer prevention. In this very large prospective public health study, 60,567 Chinese men (ages 40 to 74 years) were followed for an average of about 5 years. The incidence of new colorectal cancers was assessed in this very large cohort of research volunteers, and the consumption of green tea was assessed as a potential factor in the incidence of colorectal cancer among these men.

In this huge prospective public health study, the regular consumption of green tea (defined as green tea consumption at least 3 times per week, and for more than 6 consecutive months) was associated with a significant decrease in the risk of developing colorectal cancer. However, this observed colorectal cancer prevention benefit was limited to nonsmokers, as green tea consumption appeared to have no beneficial effect on colorectal cancer risk among men who smoked.

Among nonsmoking men, the regular consumption of green tea was associated with a very impressive 46 percent reduction in the risk of developing colorectal cancer. Importantly, higher reported levels of green tea intake were associated with correspondingly greater reductions in colorectal cancer risk (but, once again, only in nonsmokers). This “dose-response” relationship is a very important consideration, because any true cancer prevention effect by green tea should, indeed, exhibit this kind of dose-dependent impact on cancer risk reduction.

While only a large-scale prospective, randomized, double-blinded, placebo-controlled clinical research trial can definitively prove whether or not regular green tea consumption can prevent colorectal cancer, the results of this very large prospective public health study suggest that green tea may indeed have an important role to play in colorectal cancer prevention.

For a comprehensive guide to living an evidence-based cancer prevention lifestyle, order your copy of my new book, A Cancer Prevention Guide for the Human Race.  For the price of a cheeseburger, fries, and a shake, you can purchase this landmark new book, in both paperback and e-book formats, and begin living an evidence-based cancer prevention lifestyle today!

For a groundbreaking overview of cancer risks, and evidence-based strategies to reduce your risk of developing cancer, order your copy of my new book, A Cancer Prevention Guide for the Human Race,” from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Books-A-Million,Vroman’s Bookstore, and other fine bookstores!

On Thanksgiving Day, 2010, A Cancer Prevention Guide for the Human Race was ranked #6 among all cancer-related books on the “Top 100 Bestseller’s List” for Kindle e-books! On Christmas Day, 2010, A Cancer Prevention Guide for the Human Race was the #1 book on the Amazon.comTop 100 New Book Releases in Cancer” list!

Disclaimer:  As always, my advice to readers is to seek the advice of your physician before making any significant changes in medications, diet, or level of physical activity

Dr. Wascher is an oncologic surgeon, professor of surgery, cancer researcher, oncology consultant, and a widely published author

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One Comment on "Green Tea May Prevent Colon and Rectal Cancer"

  1. Kamsani on Sun, 29th Apr 2012 10:50 am 

    that I suffer from BPH due to an enrlaged prostate. He performed a cystoscopy…urodynamics and a prostate ultrasound. Nothing significant was found during the cystoscopy. The prostate ultrasound came back with 29 cc or grams…not sure which unit of measurement is correct there. The urinalysis findings led my first doctor to believe that I may have MS possibly resulting in detrusor sphincter dysynergia (DSD). MRI scans of my brain and spinal cord came back negative for MS. The MRI for the cervical spine did find a right posterolateral C5-6 disk herniation that mildly contacts and flattens the ventral cord extending to the proximal right C5-6 foramen. I was on flomax/avodart for 7 months with no change in urinary habits. His recommendation is for a procedure…TUMT/TUIP or TURP.I recently went to another doctor for a second opinion. The results (history/tests) from the first doctor were forwarded to the second doctor. After an oral examination, he did not feel that my prostate size was the issue. Since, I also have a history of large hemorrhoids/constipation/spastic colon and IBS; he thought there might be a correlation with that. I am an introvert and believe the source of most of my stress goes to my colon. He gave me a PSA test, which came back normal (0.5). Also, he performed a renal/bladder ultrasound. The results showed that I was not emptying completely…especially for someone of my age. After a cystoscopy with him (just last week), he said I have scar tissue in my urethra from a stricture. He thinks I may have suffered some injury as a child. He recommends that I undergo a Direct Visual Internal Urethrotomy (DVIU) to take care of the narrowing as a result of the stricture/scar tissue. He also wants to do an urodynamics test with me to see what he finds. He gave me a month’s sample of uroxatral, which did not help my stream any.I am set to undergo an endoscopy with my Gastro doctor this upcoming week. Blood results show that I am chronic microcytic anemic due to low MCV/MCH. My hemoglobin is fine. My doctors think I have a Mediterranean gene even though I am mostly northern European. My ferritin levels are also really low and I have begun taking an iron supplement (ferrous sulfate). I underwent a stapled hemorrhoidectomy last October and already have one autoimmune disease (limited scleroderma/CREST syndrome); so he wants to rule out Celiac disease, I suppose due to possible malabsorption. I no longer have a bleeding issue with my hemorrhoids due to the surgery. Also since any effort to bulk up my stool due to increased fiber and laxatives has failed.My biggest concern is the vast difference in opinion between both urologists in what my issue may be. Any suggestions? Are there questions I should be asking my doctors?Thanks,Tim

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