Washington: Researchers have suggested that a daily cup of tea can help slash the risk of developing cancer by shrinking tumours.
According to the researchers, green or black tea is packed with antioxidants, which can fight harmful molecules accumulating in the body and damaging cells.
Researchers found that drinking two cups of tea provides as many antioxidants as eating five portions of vegetables or two apples. Now two further studies have shown that black tea could help prevent cancer.
In the first study, US researchers analysed the compound theaflavin-2 (TF-2), found only in black tea and oolong Chinese tea, which has been shown to kill cancer cells.
In the second study, researchers from India examined the effect of polyphenols in black and green tea on the development of breast cancer in female rats.
Both significantly reduced the number of mammary tumours by 77 per cent and 92 per cent respectively and reduced their growth.
"Taken together, these two studies have demonstrated that components of black tea can help shrink and kill cancer cells and/or result in helping to reduce the number of tumours," a newspaper quoted Dr Tim Bond, of the Tea Advisory Panel, as saying.
"These findings suggest the need for clinical trials to evaluate the effect of black tea and its components on the risk of cancer in humans. New studies are needed to shed further light on clinical applications of black tea ingredients," added Bond.