- A new study found that coffee drinkers were less likely to have chronic liver disease.
- Rates of liver cancer are rising worldwide.
- Coffee has also been found to reduce the risk of heart disease.
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Drinking coffee offers more benefits than just perking you up before the workday. Drinking up to three to four cups, caffeinated or decaffeinated, protects the liver from a life-threatening disease, according to a new study.
Gleaning data from 494,585 people in the UK Biobank, researchers found that coffee drinkers were 21% less likely to develop chronic liver disease, 20% less likely to develop chronic or fatty liver disease, and 49% less likely to die from chronic liver disease compared to non-coffee drinkers.
“Coffee is widely accessible, and the benefits we see from our study may mean it could offer a potential preventative treatment for chronic liver disease,” study author Oliver Kennedy, a visiting research fellow at the University of Southampton, said in a statement to CNN. “This would be especially valuable in countries with lower income and worse access to healthcare and where the burden of chronic liver disease is highest.”
Chronic liver disease is on the rise: a study, published in 2018, found that cases of liver cancer increased 75% worldwide from 1990 to 2015.
A wealth of research on coffee’s health benefits
Of the 494,585 people analyzed in the study, 78% drank coffee, and 22% did not. The researchers tracked chronic liver disease rates within this subset for 10 years.
This study was observational, meaning researchers could not control all health factors and cannot definitively determine cause and effect.
However, their findings build upon other research showing that coffee offers a myriad of health benefits. A meta-analysis, comprised of 95 studies, found that coffee drinkers have a reduced risk of obesity and
Beyond the physical health benefits, the beverage may help with mental health, too. A study found that women who drank four cups of coffee were less likely to be depressed.
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