Beware The Tea You Sip

Green tea has become the beverage of choice for people who want to live a long and healthy life. And recent studies show its power to fight cancer, Alzheimer’s disease and a host of other ills.

But, as usual, Big Food has jumped on the bandwagon to make money by peddling low quality tea in beautiful bottles.

In its relentless pursuit of profit, beverage makers have churned out dozens of brands of bottled green tea in order to take advantage of the healing power of popularity of the drink.

The problem is that most of these teas are a waste of good water quality – as Big Food processing has stripped of the most powerful ingredients in green tea.

Green tea has a centuries-old reputation for healing of mind and body. Their powers come from antioxidants called catechins.

And the most potent catechin in green tea is epigallocatechin-3-gallate, or EGCG for short.

Researchers at Pennsylvania State University recently used an extract of EGCG to kill oral cancer cells. They found that the antioxidant caused the cancer cells to self-destruct -. And even protects healthy cells, while doing 1

and researchers at the University of Missouri tested EGCG in mice and found that the antioxidant significantly reverse the brain damage caused by Alzheimer’s disease. 2

Studies in the last decade has also documented the power of EGCG against obesity 3 diabetes 4 cardiovascular diseases 5.6 and Parkinson’s disease.

Despite numerous studies showing the potency of EGCG as a healer, the FDA has condemned its inclusion in a number of products. And Big Pharma has ignored because it is a natural substance and can not be patented.

Meanwhile, studies have also shown that as a scavenger of free radicals, EGCG can prevent cell damage and repair. It also combats the effects of pollution, sunlight and smoking on the skin.

But when you buy green tea in a bottle, most likely end up drinking, caffeine-laced, expensive sugar and water with just any beer or antioxidants.

A report ConsumerLab.com, an independent tester that checks the quality of many of my own products, recently revealed the truth about four brand bottled green teas. 9.10

Only one brand, Harney & Sons Organic Green, gave 46.8 mg of EGCG, which is close to my recommended dose. In the other three brands, EGCG measured significantly lower – and one, the diet Snapple green tea, came in as low as 3.5 mg. Homemade teas that were tested rise to 86 mg., Although some were as low as 25 mg.

I recommend you get 50 mg. EGCG one day. However, you should get the antioxidant supplements instead of tea. You can find these supplements online or at your local health food store.

I say this for two reasons. One, it is difficult to know whether the tea will deliver enough of the antioxidant. Two, many green tea leaves have been contaminated with lead. The most contaminated leaves come from China. The least polluted come from Japan.

If you do prepare your own tea, then use a tea bag or tea leaves and a strainer to reduce the chances of lead leech into your drink.

To your good health,
Al Sears, MD
Al Sears, MD, CNS


1. Swayne, M. “ingredient in green tea can target the protein to kill oral cancer cells.” News of Penn State. January 28, 2015. news.psu.edu/story/342487/2015/01/28/research/green-tea-ingredient-may-target-protein-kill-oral-cancer-cells. Accessed 05/06/2015.
2.Walker, J. M., et al. “The beneficial effects of EGCG on diet and exercise on voluntary behavior in the mouse model of Alzheimer’s disease.” Alzheimer Dis J . 2015; 44 (2): 561-72. doi: 10.3233 / JAD-140981
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3. Wolfram S, Wang Y, F. Thielecke effects against obesity Green tea: from the head to the bank. Mol Nutr Food Res . 2006 Feb; 50 (2): 176-87
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4.Wolfram S, D Raederstorff, Preller M, et al. epigallocatechin gallate supplementation alleviates diabetes in rodents. J Nutr. 2006 Oct; 136 (10) :. 2512-8
5.Lambert JD, Sang S, Yang CS. Biotransformation of green tea polyphenols and biological activities of metabolites. Mol Pharm. 2007 Nov; 4 (6) :. 819-25
6.Wolfram S. Effects of green tea and EGCG on cardiovascular and metabolic health. J Am Coll Nutr . 2007 Aug; 26 (4): 373S-88S
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7.Mandel S, et al. “Deregulation of iron in Alzheimer’s disease: multimodal brain permeable iron chelating drug, possessing neuroprotective-neurorescue and amyloid precursor protein-processing regulatory activities as therapeutic agents.” Prog Neurobiol. 2007 Aug; 82 (6) :. 348-60
8.Weinreb O, S Mandel, Amit T, Youdim MB. neurological mechanisms of green tea polyphenols in Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s. J Nutr Biochem. 2004 Sep; 15 (9) :. 506-16
9.ConsumerLab.com. consumerlab.com/news/Results%20of%20green%20tea%20product%
20tests% 20published% 20online. / 5_21_2013 /. Retrived 06/05/15.
10.ConsumerLab.com. “Product Review: green tea supplements, drinks and teas brewable opinion.”
21 December 2012. consumerlab.com/reviews/Green_Tea_Review_Supplements_and_Bottled/
Green_Tea / .Retrieved 6.5.15.

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