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The Tea Council of the USA responds to the FDA Decline of Green Tea Health Claim Petition

You may have read or seen on television that the FDA has recently rejected a petition for a qualified health claim for Green Tea. Unfortunately the media plays this up as if the FDA is saying that green tea does not have any health benefits, when in fact what it means is that the FDA will currently not allow a company to put health claims on a product label.

Please be assured that the body of scientific evidence linking tea consumption to a great many health benefits continues to build. I feel confident and have every reason to believe that in time, as more human clinical studies are conducted, that an official health claim will be granted.

On May 22, 2006 the Tea Council of the USA released this statement in response to the FDA's Decline of Green Tea Cardiovascular Health Claim Petition;

"Recently the FDA denied a health claim for green tea.

Government health claims communicate information about reduction of disease state. Therefore to qualify for such a claim, the research must show disease reduction through epidemiological and clinical studies on the disease state.

While there is a great deal of evidence suggesting that dietary flavonoids, including those found in both green and black tea, contribute to cardiovascular health, what is currently missing from the literature is epidemiological research on green tea consumption in the US population and clinical human studies showing that drinking green tea reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease by reducing risk of specific measurable endpoints associated with the disease, such as lowering cholesterol or blood pressure.

We anticipate that the research will evolve to support a health claim in this area in the future, since the anecdotal evidence certainly supports this position. Even thought the FDA has denied this health claim, we have no doubt that drinking tea contributes to overall health on a variety of levels. The research on this subject has been ongoing for decades. But as always, more research needs to be done and is being done now.

In the meantime, people should still feel good about drinking tea because it's an enjoyable beverage and the research to date certainly suggests that it may contribute to an overall healthy lifestyle".

Sorting out fact from fiction when it comes to tea can be very tricky. We welcome any questions you may have regarding tea. We will do our level best to answer your questions as long as we have the answer. If we dont have the answer and cant find acurate information we will say so. Thanks, Beth

One Comment

  • Lynn Walter

    Beth...really enjoyed your photos and highlights of your trip to China. Hope to get down to your summer solstice to stock up on my ice tea favorites for the summer...see you then....Cheers, Lynn

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