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Yerba Mate May Help Fight Colon Cancer

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yerba mate A new study conducted at the University of Illinois shows that the compounds in yerba mate tea have the ability to essentially make cells self-destruct. In addition to inducing cell death in colon cancer cells, the study also showed that reduced important markers of inflammation, which is significant as inflammation can trigger the steps of cancer progression. has long been consumed in South America for its medicinal properties, and now this study is bringing them to light.

Via ScienceDaily:

Could preventing colon cancer be as simple as developing a taste for yerba mate tea? In a recent University of Illinois study, scientists showed that human colon cancer cells die when they are exposed to the approximate number of bioactive compounds present in one cup of this brew, which has long been consumed in South America for its medicinal properties.

“The caffeine derivatives in mate tea not only induced death in human colon cancer cells, they also reduced important markers of inflammation,” said Elvira de Mejia, a U of I associate professor of food chemistry and food toxicology.

That’s important because inflammation can trigger the steps of cancer progression, she said.

In the in vitro study, de Mejia and former graduate student Sirima Puangpraphant isolated, purified, and then treated human colon cancer cells with caffeoylquinic acid (CQA) derivatives from mate tea. As the scientists increased the CQA concentration, cancer cells died as a result of apoptosis.

“Put simply, the cancer cell self-destructs because its DNA has been damaged,” she said.

The ability to induce apoptosis, or cell death, is a promising tactic for therapeutic interventions in all types of cancer, she said.

Read more at ScienceDaily.com.


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Article updated on: February 7th, 2012

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One Response to “ Yerba Mate May Help Fight Colon Cancer ”

  1. […] you’re in need of a change of pace or are simply interested in trying something new, yerba mate, commonly referred to as just mate in its beverage form, is worth a try. Mate shares some […]