(Credit: iStockphoto/Lilli Day) As a former smoker, I commiserate with those who still smoke; it's very difficult to stop smoking, but you really must. Just in case you think it's too late to quit because the damage has already been done, that thought is unfounded. Stopping smoking can, over time, reverse lung damage... and, low and behold, new research shows so can green tea!
The study was conducted in Taiwan, where lung cancer is the main cause of death. Students at Chung Shan Medical University conducted a hospital-based randomized study of 170 cancer patients. In addition, 340 healthy patients were used as controls.
Researchers performed genotyping on insulin-like growth factors reported to be associated with cancer risk. In addition, subjects responded to questionnaires regarding: demographics, cigarette smoking habits, green tea consumptions, dietary intake of fruits and vegetables, cooking practices, and family history of lung cancer.
The astonishing results revealed that both smokers and non-smokers who did not drink any green tea had a 5.16 percent increased risk of lung cancer compared to those who drank at least one cup of green tea per day. Among smokers, subjects had a 12.7 percent increased risk of lung cancer compared to those who drank a cuppa' green tea.
Genetics, specifically certain insulin-like growth factors - IGF1, IGF2 and IGFBP3 - associated with cancer risk, also play a role in the risk differential, as non-smoking green tea drinkers without these risk factors showed a 66 reduced risk of lung cancer compared to smoking green tea drinkers with the risk factors.
Clearly, the study concluded, green tea has a modulative effect on lung cancer risk caused by smoking. This study supports the conclusions of previous research showing the lung cancer protection qualities of green tea as well as black tea, fruits, vegetables, and other antioxidants.
Science Daily, Ezine