Inflammation is the root cause of wide-ranging medical problems, including the development of diseases ranging from cancer, diabetes and arthritis to neurodegenerative conditions and cardiovascular and pulmonary problems. It is also a key player in premature aging and early death.
“For thousands of years people used natural remedies to try — and sometimes succeed — in curing their ailments and preserving their youth,” said Professor Declan Naughton from Kingston University’s School of Life Sciences. “Now the latest research we have carried out suggests a number of naturally occurring substances may offer the hope of new treatments to block the progression of inflammation.”
The study builds on work undertaken by Naughton and Kingston University Ph.D. student Tamsyn Thring, along with the technical team from Neal’s Yard Remedies, a British beauty brand. They tested 21 plant extracts for evidence of their efficiency in fighting cancer and also in the battle against aging. Of the 21 extracts, three — white tea, witch hazel and rose — showed considerable potential because of their anti-inflammatory and antioxidant activity, with white tea displaying the most marked results.
“Indeed it appeared that drinking a simple cup of white tea might well help reduce an individual’s risk of cancer, rheumatoid arthritis or even just age-associated wrinkles,” Naughton said.