Let Your Liver Enjoy More Coffee

Drinking coffee may lower the risk of developing liver cancer

/ Author:  / Reviewed by: Robert Carlson, M.D

(RxWiki News) Scientists haven’t pinpointed the exact reason why coffee may be able to protect the liver from cancer. But they have found a good bit of evidence to support coffee’s role in reducing the risk of liver cancer.

A recent study reviewed 16 studies involving coffee drinking and the risk of developing liver cancer.

In a recent study, researchers found that drinking three or more cups of coffee per day reduced the risk of developing liver cancer by half.

"Talk to your doctor about safe levels of coffee drinking."

A team of doctors from the First Affiliated Hospital of China Medical University in Shenyang, China, led by Li-Xuan Sang, MD, investigated whether drinking coffee reduced the risk of liver cancer.

For this study, researchers identified 16 studies from international medical databases to review. The selected studies were from countries in Asia and Europe. A total of 3,622 liver cancer cases were found in all of the studies.

When researchers compared heavy coffee drinkers to those who never or almost never drank coffee, heavy coffee consumption was linked to a 50 percent reduction in the risk of developing liver cancer. These results were consistent with results found in two previous studies.

In most of the studies, heavy coffee consumption was considered more than three cups of coffee per day.

The authors were unsure which components in coffee lowered the risk of developing liver cancer. Based on previous research, the authors suggested that caffeine, cafestol, kahweol and chlorogenic acid might have anti-cancer qualities.

The authors concluded that further studies would need to be done to verify their findings, but drinking coffee appeared to be responsible for reducing the risk of liver cancer by half.

This study was published in February in BMC Gastroenterology.

The Science and Technology Program of Shenyang provided funding for this project. No conflicts of interest were declared.

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Review Date: 
February 25, 2013
Last Updated:
December 31, 2013