A study published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology suggests that coffee consumption is beneficial for individuals who have suffered from colon cancer. The research was conducted by scientists from Dana-Faber Cancer Institute.
The research team used data about almost 1.000 patients who were required to answer questions regarding their dietary habits. They had to answer the questions while they were undergoing chemotherapy and answer them again a year later. All the participants underwent surgery and chemotherapy for stage three colon cancer.
According to the findings patients who consumed at least four cups of coffee per day (approximately 460 milligrams of caffeine) or even more had 42 less chances of disease recurrence compared to patients who did not consume coffee at all. Moreover they were 34 percent less likely to die because of any other cause including other types of cancer.
Unlike patients who drank at least four cups of coffee a day those individuals who drank three cups per day had a modest protection against cancer. One cup of coffee per day or less was only had very little benefits. Most recurrences of the disease happened approximately five years after the treatment.
The research team remarked that what prevented the recurrence of the disease was caffeine and not other compound in it. It is not clear what caused this effect. It might be due to the fact that coffee increases the body’s sensitivity to insulin. Since less of it will be needed inflammation, which is a risk factor for cancer and diabetes, is reduced. In fact coffee reduces the risk of various types of cancer such as melanoma, advanced prostate cancer, postmenopausal breast cancer and liver cancer.
The lead researcher of the study Charles S. Fuchs, the director of the Gastrointestinal Cancer Center at Dana-Farber does not make any recommendations to the patients until these findings will be confirmed by other studies. He said:
If you are a coffee drinker and are being treated for colon cancer, don’t stop. But if you’re not a coffee drinker and wondering whether to start, you should first discuss it with your physician.”
According to Fuchs this is the first study which links caffeine consumption with risk of colon cancer recurrence.
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