Green Tea and Resveratrol to help reduce endo?

Here's an interesting study on the effect of EGCG found in green tea and Resveratrol found in red grape skins and their positive effect on reducing endometriotic lesions in mice. humrep.oxfordjournals.org/c...

Not a 'cure' but perhaps these things can be added to your diet to help matters. Both can be purchased in supplement form but it is not known whether an isolated compound works on its own without all the other compounds found in that food.

I haven't bottomed out how much of each would be required to produce a positive effect but I should think quite a few cups of green tea each day would be necessary. I do drink some green tea with a small bit of honey and I take a supplement that includes resveratrol. Apparently studies have shown that Matcha green tea has 137 times as much EGCG as normal green tea so even though good quality Matcha is quite expensive it would seem to be a better option. I also eat red grapes when I can. Grapes are heavily sprayed with pesticides etc. so I don't bother if they are not organic.

You will see that the study also points out that these two compounds are powerfully anti-cancer.

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  • Resveratrol increases blood thinning and internal bleeding - as endo is a bleeding disorder you might want to avoid that one till scientists have isolated which component is best for you without adding to the bleeding problems.

    It is the bleeding from endo that causes most pains and can spread endo, so this isn't one that is recommended in terms of popping supplements from the health food store in to the body.

    WebMD's page for this supplement reads:

    "What are the risks of taking resveratrol?

    Side effects. When resveratrol is consumed in the amount normally occurring in foods, it is generally considered safe. It could cause a reaction in those who are allergic to grapes or wine.

    Risks. People who have health conditions like bleeding disorders should not take resveratrol without talking to a doctor first. Women who have hormone-sensitive conditions like endometriosis or cancers of the breast, ovaries, or uterus must get medical advice before using resveratrol supplements.

    Interactions. If you take any medicines or other supplements regularly, talk to your health care provider before you start using resveratrol supplements. They could interact with medicines like blood thinners, blood pressure drugs, cancer treatments, MAOI antidepressants, antiviral and antifungal medicines, NSAID painkillers, and supplements like St. John's wort, garlic, and ginkgo.

    The research sounds promising for the future - but moderation in all things - personally I'll wait to see if the key component that does help endo can be isolated and avoid adding to the bleeding woes of having endo.

  • I understand your personal choice in wanting to avoid resveratrol but I do find that Webmd is excessively cautious when it comes to indicating possible issues. It is however useful to know about the blood thinning action of resveratrol for anyone out there on blood thinners. One would hope that their doctors have sufficiently warned them to ask in advance of taking any new supplement etc. and given advice on things to avoid.

    Resveratrol has been proven to inhibit endothelial cell proliferation and formation of new blood vessels in endometriosis. While this research was conducted in mice I still think it warrants serious attention. There may be additional studies which I have not yet looked into. Furthermore, in combination with oral contraceptives, resveratrol decreases the aromatase and COX-2 expression, which may lead to the dropping of estrogen levels and reducing inflammation. Patients in the study reported a reduction in pain. Endometriotic lesions produce aromatase which facilitates the production of yet more oestrogen and therefore the production of more endometriosis. Anything that can reduce this is worth attention.

    My preference is to go with the more specific studies into the actions of certain compounds or foods in relation to actual endometriosis rather than solely relying on the broad brush approach of webmd. If I wait until a compound or food is fully scientifically analysed I will be long gone. I would only be concerned if I had a propensity for thin blood which I don't or if I was on blood thinners which I am not. Even so, many of the foods we eat have blood thinning effect and there is plenty of information on what to stop eating/taking in advance of an operation. e.g. fish oil containing omega 3 has a blood thinning effect. Sometimes the benefits outweigh the possible downsides. Webmd is naturally approaching this to cover all possible scenarios in the general population.

    Doctors seem to be quite happy to prescribe NSAIDS like Naproxen for endo pain yet among other possible side effects it can inactivate new platelets for up to 24 hours which is effectively a blood thinning action!

  • Hi Brownlow

    I have tried green tea now for over a year. And in high enough doses it does help considerably - again not a cure but a help. When I drink 3-4 cups of green tea 4-5 days/week pain levels decrease by about 1-2 levels (on a pain scale of 1-10) - in other words quite significantly but no cure. I accidentally stopped (I drink tea at work but not much at home) when on holiday last year and pain levels increased back up within 1 week. When I came home again after 2 weeks away, it took another week or so for the pain levels to start decreasing again as I started to drink green tea again (back to work! ;-)). I have tried stopping again and the pattern is repeated.

    Green tea apparently contains ECGC/type of catechins which act as angiogenesis inhibitors - ie inhibits the excess growth of new blood vessels (which in turn may feed and support the excess growth of endometrial lesions). Tumour/cancer growth is also supported by excess growth of blood vessels which is one of the reasons they reckon that green tea is an anticarcinogenic.

    Some research to support the theory that green tea intake will slow down endometriosis growth: ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/229... ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/218... & ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/248...

    I have since gone on to GnRH/Prostrap which has given me both completely pain free days (4-5 days out of 7) and restored my energy levels for the first time in nearly 3 years. However as the Prostrap is coming to its end I have upped my green tea intake again..

    Two notes re green tea though: excess intake may cause liver damage and could also act as a 'pro-oxidant' (?) according to Wikipedia. Like you say - everything in moderation! And as Impatient points out, we have to be very careful both in respect of interactions with the medication that we are already on and due to our hormone levels.

    Haven't tried or read up on Resveratrol/red grape but will start to enjoy my (very) occasional glass of red wine even more. ;-)

    Wishing you all the best. Would be good to hear how you are getting on when trying these out. Take care

  • OK, I can contribute an update. They moved research on from mouse models to actual women using a low dose of resveratrol. The results were positive. I did find a translation of the study I think (the mouse model study is easily found) but I can't find it now. Here's a link to a moderately detailed layman's summary:

    medtube.net/tribune/resvera...

    The women concerned are on OC, I believe the combined pill but showed no real improvement on it. Therefore, resveratrol was used here to supplement the OC. The OC in question appears to be drospirenone + ethinylestradiol. This is quite possibly Yasmin then (says my Google search for those two hormones.)

    The resveratrol dosage appears to have been very low, so low that I can't find anyone who actually sells it at that low amount myself. (I can find it at 50mg).

    If anyone can find the actual study, do post it! I've lost it (careless me.)

    This is, obviously, interesting stuff, esp. if you're a person for whom OCPs don't have much of an impact.

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