We’ve talked about the potentially powerful health benefits of caffeine and the possibility that drinking coffee could ward off certain types of breast cancer over the course of the past week. Now we’ve got yet another study that could have health care providers suggesting that their patients enjoy another cup of hot java.
Researchers have reviewed the information of nearly 48,000 men from the Health Professionals Follow Up Study and concluded that coffee may reduce prostate cancer risk. Drinking coffee seemed to protect against all forms of prostate cancer but was particularly effective in protecting men from lethal forms of prostate cancer.
Men who participated in the study who drank from 1-3 cups of coffee daily lowered their risk of lethal prostate cancer by nearly 30% and those that drank 6 cups per day lowered their risk by 60%. What was even more surprising to researchers than the dramatic reduction in cancer risk was the fact that the reduction was almost identical with both regular coffee and decaf.
Researchers say it’s not just the caffeine that’s responsible for the prostate cancer prevention benefits. The study showed men who drank decaffeinated coffee also had a similar reduction in aggressive disease.
Researchers say coffee also contains many other potentially beneficial compounds such as antioxidants and minerals that may play a role in preventing the cancer and more research is needed to confirm these results.
It is probably too early for health care providers to prescribe coffee to their patients as a preventative course of treatment for the disease but the findings of this study seem promising. If researchers can identify the compounds that provide protection from cancer growth, coffee could become a very valuable tool to men who are at risk of developing this deadly disease.