Tea May Reduce the Risk of Ovarian Cancer

Ladies, here’s another reason to replace that cup of joe with a spot of tea: research shows that regular consumption of tea may reduce the risk of ovarian cancer.

A recent study featured in the publication Cancer Causes Control found that women who drink tea regularly (4 or more cups per day) had a lower risk of ovarian cancer compared with non-tea drinkers. The study, part of the Australian Ovarian Cancer Study, aimed to examine the effects of tea consumption on ovarian cancer rates among 2,784 Australian women aged 18-79. Researchers found that regular consumption of any tea may reduce ovarian cancer risk, inhibit tumor growth and slow the rate of disease progression.

Based on the data, the researchers found that drinking four or more cups daily of any tea– black, green or herbal– was associated with an almost 30% reduction in risk of developing ovarian cancer compared to drinking less than that amount.  However, when each individual tea variety was examined on its own, none had a statistically significant impact on cancer risk by itself at any dose.  In evaluating these findings, the authors  noted that tea drinkers were thinner and more physically active than controls, suggesting that there may have been outside factors contributing to the reduced cancer risk beyond the tea itself.

Tea has been under the microscope a lot lately. Given its high levels of antioxidants, researchers are keen on investigating potential health benefits. Antioxidants are helpful food components that help protect our cells from damage, thereby reducing cancer risk. While this particular study did not find a significant difference between types of teas, the authors pointed to a different study conducted in China in 2002 which concluded that frequent consumption of tea, especially green tea, was associated with a reduced risk of ovarian cancer.

The bottom line: this study adds additional support to the claim that frequent tea drinking may reduce the risk of ovarian cancer. It also further elucidates the impact that our dietary choices can have on our health. So sit down and enjoy a cup of tea. Just be sure to pass on the crumpets.

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