A new study has confirmed the growing evidence that drinking tea, both green and black, might slow the growth of prostate cancer. The 15 men in this study, who were due for prostate surgery for cancer in five days time, were required to steep the tea for five minutes to ensure the release of epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) and to drink five cups a day.

Another five men, also due for surgery, who drank regular or diet cola containing similar amounts of caffeine and other stimulants as the tea, acted as a control. A comparison of biopsied tissue taken from the prostates of all the men before the study and after surgery revealed that in the tea-drinking men the tissue contained tea polyphenols and reduced polyamines (a marker of rapidly dividing tissue found in prostate and other cancers) while the biopsies of the men who drank cola showed no such changes. (Experimental Biology 2004 Meeting, Washington, December 2005).