Posts Tagged ‘liver cancers’

Coffee Actually Can Be Good to the Last Drop

January 14, 2020

The title of this post is identical to the title of an article from Consumers Reports published in the Health and Science Section of the 5 November, 2019 Washington Post. Edward Giovannucci, professor of epidemiology at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health says, “The most important thing we’ve learned about coffee in the past 20 years is that there’s very little indication that it’s bad for you. If anything, there’s more evidence that it might be healthy to drink.”

These benefits are likely because of anti-inflammatories and antioxidants found naturally in coffee: polyphenols (such as chlorogenic and quince acids) and diterpenes (such as cafestol and kahweol). These health perks probably extend to decaf, too, because with decaf only the caffeine, not these other compounds are removed.

Giovannucci states where the current research is solid and where more investigation is needed.

*Strongest evidence: Coffee lowers the risk of endometrial cancer, gallstones, nonalcoholic fatty liver disease, liver fibrosis, cirrhosis, and liver cancer, oral cancers and Type 2 diabetes.

*Moderate evidence: Coffee lowers the risk of colorectal cancer, coronary heart disease, heart failure, stroke, melanoma and nonmelanoma skin cancers, Parkinson’s disease and respiratory disease; and it improves alertness, concentration, focus, energy level, and mood.

*Some evidence: Coffee lowers the risk of age-related cognitive decline, Alzheimer’s disease, breast cancer, depression, pancreatic cancer, prostate cancer; and it increases the variety of healthy bacteria in the gut.

*Limited evidence: Coffee lowers the risk of weight gain and falls by the elderly, possibly because caffeine increases alertness or reaction time.

There are some people for whom too much coffee irritates the stomach, causes anxiety or the jitters, disrupts sleep and increases the frequency of heart palpitations. In some people prone to migraines three or more cups can trigger them. Pregnant women, people who are at risk of osteoporosis, and those taking certain drugs (including some antibiotics, antidepressants and antipsychotics) should limit their intake of caffeinated coffee.