Having worked with H pylori patients for more than a half decade, I can safely say that natural treatments for H pylori and many other chronic digestive infections can be highly effective when they are used in an appropriate manner.
Green tea is something we have not used in our protocols, but it would be fantastic for patients if green tea is, indeed, capable of eradicating H pylori because of it’s ease of use and cost-effectiveness compared with many of the relatively expensive natural substances on the market.
In September 2008, a team of scientists from the University of Massachusetts Medical School were able to demonstrate that green tea could reduce the growth of two types of Helicobacter organisms: H pylori and H felis.
Whilst this piece of research is very interesting, we have to be very careful about how to interpret the findings.
Reducing the growth of H pylori is not the same as killing it outright. In fact, it is a completely different concept altogether. So whilst the findings of this study are interesting – and promising – we cannot conclude that green tea is capable of eradicating H pylori.
I am sure you are aware that green tea is used as a beverage widely in many countries. It would make sense that those people who drink green tea would have lower rates of infection.
Well, in my experience of having worked with countless hundreds of people around the world on a one-to-one basis, I can say with a high degree of certainty that green tea consumption does not eradicate H pylori on its own. If it did, people who drink green tea would not have H pylori.
A second factor must be taken into consideration when evaluating the above study. When we examine the study closely, we see that the researchers demonstrated that green tea inhibited the growth of H pylori in vitro.
In vitro means “outside the body”. in plain terms, this would be a test tube or petri-dish in the lab.
A substance that inhibits H pylori in a test tube or dish does not necessarily have the ability to inhibit the bacteria in the human stomach or intestine where acid, enzymes and many other substances are present.
This issue crops up time and time again in the research I read. Many natural substances are promoted and sold on the Internet on the basis of very dodgy research findings. As a practitioner with a wealth of research and knowledge, I feel it is my duty to raise these cautions with you.
You must be very diligent when you read about these claims. Just because a piece of research cites a positive effect, the study may not be truly representative of reality!
True, some common foods and beverages can be effective against H pylori, but they do not work for everyone. If they did, people who foods such as eat broccoli and garlic and those people who drink cranberry juice and green tea would never have H pylori.
The reality is that these substances may help some people, but they will not be optimal choices for everyone.
In my experience, substances such as mastic gum, cabbage juice, probiotics, sulforaphane and matula herbal formula – when used correctly – still offer by far the best natural alternatives to the pharmaceutical triple therapy treatments for H pylori.