Is Green The New Black? It Is For Prostate Health

is-green-the-new-black-it-is-for-prostate-health_300Green tea is one of the best drinks or supplements for men’s health. It boosts immunity, and it helps fight prostate cancer as well as other cancers. Green tea health benefits extend to enlarged prostate by promoting normal prostate size and helping to manage urinary symptoms. Studies have also shown green tea to be helpful as an anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial for prostatitis.

There are antioxidants in green tea called catechins. One of the strongest catechins found in green tea is epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG). The prostate benefits derived from taking green tea have been shown to increase with higher levels of green tea/EGCG dosage. Green tea leaves are not oxidized like other tea leaves such as black tea leaves; that allows green tea leaves to maintain essential substances that make this tea so powerful.

Green Tea Benefits For Prostate Cancer

Green tea slows the growth of prostate cancer cells and causes the cancer cells to die, while stimulating immune cells that fight cancerous tumors. A study found that a daily intake of 600 mg (three 200 mg tablets) of green tea extract reduced risk of developing prostate cancer in men with precancerous lesions. According to the World Health Organization, countries with high green tea consumption like Japan, (where they drink more than 10 cups per day), have a prostate cancer rate that is about three times lower than the rate in the United States. Obviously, dietary differences may also factor in; but many studies on green tea and prostate cancer have shown that the risk of prostate cancer is proportional to the amount and frequency of green tea consumption.

Green Tea Benefits For Enlarged Prostate

The catechins in green tea reduce men’s risks of developing benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), also known as an enlarged prostate, by promoting normal prostate size. The powerful antioxidants in the green tea help manage urinary symptoms associated with BPH and are some of the reasons green tea is one of the top natural treatments for urinary tract infections. Studies have shown that green tea regulates DHT production and the hormones that influence a man’s prostate volume and PSA levels.

Reading Labels For Green Tea

When you are looking at green tea supplements or brewable teas, read the product labels to determine the EGCG levels. The amount of EGCG is usually about half of the amount of green tea extract in a product. So a daily intake of 600 mg (three 200 mg tablets) of highly concentrated green tea extract provides 454 mg of catechins (of which 311 are EGCG).

The labels for green tea supplements should list the species name of the plant and the part of the plant from which the tea comes (plus the ingredients in the capsule). This is required by the Food and Drug Administration. For example, one of the best prostate supplements, Prost-P10x, is a doctor-formulated supplement for prostate health. Green tea is one of several prostate supplements in the product. The label for Prost-P10x clearly states that it has 500 mg of green tea leaf extract from Camellia sinensis standardized to 45 percent EGCG. Prost-P10x is also caffeine-free.

Getting The Most Benefit From Your Green Tea

You want to get the most green tea benefit for your dollar. Supplements are going to be some of your more affordable options for getting quality green tea extract. The most expensive options are bottled green tea beverages, which provide the least amount of actual green tea benefit for your buck (not to mention some unwanted sweeteners).

If you enjoy drinking your green tea, you can find several quality brewable teas with a high ECGC level for a low cost. Note that you should avoid teas with nylon filters: Nylon seems to bind with EGCG and catechins, and this results in lower levels making it into the tea.

Keep in mind that tea does not need to steep any more than three minutes to get the EGCG benefits. Also, it is worth noting that tea leaves from China have tested higher in levels of lead in the leaves. This is most likely due to pollution. While this does not create a huge risk for you, it is something you should be aware of. If you use a filter such as a tea bag, the built-in filter of a Keurig K-Cup, or a fine strainer, that is sufficient in keeping the lead from going into the tea and being ingested. You do not want to swallow the actual tea leaves because researchers have found that the lead is only in the leaves. Teas that come from Japan have not shown measurable lead levels. The other things to watch for are caffeine levels. Caffeine is one of the things to avoid for prostate health, especially if you have BPH.

Resources:

Bettuzzi S, Brausi M, Rizzi F, Castagnetti G, Peracchia G, Corti A. Chemoprevention of human prostate cancer by oral administration of green tea catechins in volunteers with high-grade prostate intraepithelial neoplasia: a preliminary report from a one-year proof-of-principle study. Cancer Res. 2006 Jan 15;66(2):1234-40.

Product Review: Green tea Supplements, Drinks, and Brewable Teas Review, consumerlab.com

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Dr. Geo Espinosa

By Dr. Geo Espinosa

Dr. Geo Espinosa is a naturopathic doctor, licensed acupuncturist and certified functional medicine practitioner recognized as an authority in holistic urology and men’s health. He is Clinical Assistant Professor and holistic clinician in Urology at New York University Langone Medical Center. As an avid researcher and writer, Dr. Geo has authored numerous scientific papers and books including co-editing the Integrative Sexual Health book, and author of the best selling prostate cancer book: Thrive, Don't Only Survive.