New research from the United States has indicated that green tea could help prevent or delay the onset of type 1 diabetes . The study, which was published in Life Sciences, examined the predominant antioxidant in the tea, called epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG), which was tested on a laboratory mouse that had type 1 diabetes and primary Sjogren’s syndromen, a condition that damages the glands that produce moisture, which causes a dry mouth and eyes.
It was shown that EGCG lowered the severity and delayed onset of salivary gland damage associated with Sjogren’s syndrome in the mouse. Stephen Hsu, a molecular cell biologist from the School of Dentistry, Medical College of Georgia, said “Our study focused on Sjogren’s syndromen, so learning that EGCG also can prevent and delay insulin-dependent type 1 diabetes was a big surprise.”
Hsu added “EGCG modulates several important genes, so it suppresses the abnormality at the molecular level in the salivary gland. It also significantly lowered the serum auto-antibodies, reducing the severity of Sjogren’s syndrome-like symptoms.”
Sjogren’s syndrome and type 1 diabetes are both autoimmune diseases, which are the third most common type of diseases in US, affecting about eight per cent of the population. Sjogren’s syndrome has no known cure.

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