Drinking tea lowers a woman’s risk of developing ovarian cancer, say researchers from the National Institute of Environmental Medicine, Karolinska Institutet, Sweden. You can read about this new study in the December 12/26 issue of Archives of Internal Medicine (JAMA).

According to background information in the article, few epidemiological studies have looked at the relationship specifically between the consumption of tea and ovarian cancer – although there has been evidence in the past indicating some benefits.

Lead researchers, Susanna C. Larsson, M.Sc., and Alicja Wolk, studied the association between tea drinking and ovarian cancer risk in 61, 057 women – all aged 40-76. All the women were part of a population based Mammography cohort (that had been carried out in Sweden).

The women had filled in a questionnaire which included 67 questions regarding their dietary habits between 1987-1990. 68% drank tea once a month or more. The women were followed up until 2004. During this period 301 women developed invasive epithelial ovarian cancer.

The authors said they observed that women who drank two cups of tea a day (or more) had a 46% lower risk of ovarian cancer than non-tea drinkers. Each additional cup of tea per day was associated with an additional 18% lower risk.

Even the women who drank less than one cup of tea per day had an 18% lower risk of developing ovarian cancer than the women who never drank tea. Those who had one cup a day had a 24% lower risk.

The writers also added that coffee consumption is not associated with ovarian cancer risk in this cohort.

(Arch Intern Med. 2005;165:2683-2686.)

The study was supported by research grants from the Swedish Cancer Foundation and the Swedish Research Council/Longitudinal Studies, Stockholm, Sweden.

SOURCE: Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA)

Written by: Christian Nordqvist
Editor: Medical News Today