Does Coffee Protect You From Cancer?
If so, I am SO SAFE.
New research suggests that drinking four or more cups of coffee a day can cut a woman’s risk of endometrial cancer by up to 25%. Endometrial cancer is a malignancy that forms in the lining of the uterus. More than 46,000 women in the U.S. will contract endometrial cancer this year, and more than 8,000 will die from it.
A study released today in Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention journal reviewed the data from over 67,000 women who participated in the Nurses’ Study beginning in 1980. In reviewing the data, researchers determined that women who consumed four or more cups of coffee a day had a 25% lower incidence of endometrial cancer than women who consumed one or less cups of coffee a day. The trend was only associated with regular coffee, however; decaffeinated coffee was not associated as strongly with decreased cancer risk.
However, this doesn’t make coffee a panacea. While this isn’t the first good news about coffee — research has previously shown it to have positive effects on type 2 diabetes, gallstones, colon cancer and more – other research has shown that coffee drinkers may be at higher risk for urinary tract cancer and lung cancer, not to mention the jitters, coffee breath and a tendency to fire that snippy email off to your boss without reading it over first.
The authors of the study also warn that the benefits may not outweigh the risks of caffeine consumption — particularly if you drink those four cups of coffee with two sugars and two creams, as the additional calories and fat will effectively neutralize any possible benefit the coffee itself may have. Still, if you’re already a heavy coffee drinker, take heart — it’s not as bad for you as you think.
Photo Credit: Anthony_p_c on Flickr.