Green Tea Shows Promise for Treating Adult Acne

By Stephenie Overman

Decaffeinated green tea extract (GTE) shows some promise in treating adult women with acne, according to a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial.

Young  woman with pimple on her faceThe results of the trial, conducted by Dr. Po-Hsuan Lu of the Far Eastern Memorial Hospital in Taipei and Chung-Hua Hsu of Taipei City Hospital, was published in Complementary Therapies in Medicine.

Eighty women 25 to 45 years of age who had been diagnosed with moderate to severe acne received either three 500 mg. capsules of decaffeinated GTE or placebos daily for four weeks. Sixty-four patients completed the study; none withdrew because of reported discomfort or adverse affects associated with the treatment.

The decaffeinated GTE, extracted from dried green tea leaves, was obtained from the Tea Research and Extension Station, Taoyuan County, Taiwan.

The researchers noted that “Epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGGG), the major polyphenol in green tea, has anti-carcinoegenic, anti-inflammatory and anti-microbial activities” and “these observations led us to led us to hypothesize that EGGG may be beneficial in women with post-adolescent acne.”

“GTE resulted in significant reductions in the number of lesions on the nose, perioral area, and on the chin between the two groups,” according to the authors. However, there were no significant differences between groups in the number of total lesions.

Lu and Hsu added that they found significant reductions in total cholesterol levels within the GTE group.

“To our knowledge, this is the first study to explore the effect of oral decaffeinated GTE on women with post-adolescent acne. Some human study demonstrates the EGGG is effective in acne lesion, with only a few mild side effects. However most of these studies were not double-blinded or randomized, had no control group, and included small sample sizes,” according to the authors.

Sources: Complementary Therapies in Medicine