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Previous studies have shown that green tea contains powerful anti-oxidants that fight harmful free radicals. This enables green tea to reduce the risk and prevent the development of many cancers. But the effect of green tea is not limited to internal organs. It can also improve the health of the skin by preventing wrinkles, reducing damage from sunburn and even decreasing the risk of skin cancer when applied topically. A recent study reviewed several previous studies that looked at green tea and skin. Green tea taken orally or applied directly to the skin has prevented damage from ultraviolet light, which can lead to skin cancer. Mice exposed to a chemical that causes skin cancer were less likely to develop tumours if they had green tea ointment applied for 1 week prior to exposure. (Archives of Dermatology 2000;136:989-994, 1051).