Friday, May 19, 2006

Green Tea and your heart - the Japanese experience

The Japanese have always claim that their green tea has medicinal value, especially that Japanese green tea may be cardioprotective and may also be cancer preventive. Well, they again, applied for FDA approval on their claims. Ito En Ltd of Japan (the largest Japanese green tea producers) had in July 2005 applied to the FDA for permission to claim that consumption of at least 150cc of Japanese green tea as a source of catechins, may reduce CVS risk factors and so reduce CAD.

FDA on the 9th May 2006, rejected the claims in a press statement. And I quote, "The FDA concludes that there is no credible evidence to support qualified health claims for green tea or green-tea extract and a reduction of a number of risk factors associated with CVD." Well FDA had earlier in July 2005 also rejected the green tea manufacturer's claims against cancer of prostate and breast. One must also not forget that this is a Japanese application to an American body. Is it possible that there is some "bias" here.

Well anyway, I must say that I also can see little basis to claim that catechin prevents heart disease. To me, it is obvious that the lower incidence of heart disease in Japanese in Japan, is due primarily to their very healthy Japanese diet. Of course, sushi and sashimi with a good dose of Japanese green tea can't be too bad, yah?

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