According to various studies drinking coffee can significantly reduce the chances of men developing prostate cancer. Besides caffeine, coffee contains a variety of molecules which are biologically active and can be beneficial to their consumer.
For instance, coffee contains molecules that have anti-inflammatory properties, as well as, antioxidants. Additionally, it can affect hormone levels and even alter your metabolism.
Research has delved into the potential benefits of drinking coffee and has revealed that those who consume more coffee are less likely to generate some forms of cancer. For example, liver, colon and breast cancer. However, until recently coffee’s effects on the development of prostate cancer were ambiguous.
A meta-analysis on the effects of drinking coffee on prostate cancer
Last year, Chinese scientists undertook a meta-analysis at Shengjing Hospital’s medical university. With it, they made some interesting discoveries.
For those who might not be aware, meta-analyses have a significant advantage over individual studies in the context of statistics. That is because they pool together the data from many other related studies.
This meta-analysis in particular covered over 1 million people from all over the world. Within this analysis, almost 60,000 of them had developed prostate cancer. And it produced compelling results. Namely, it compared the people who drank the least coffee to those who drank the most. The comparison revealed that those who were drinking coffee the most were almost 10% less likely to develop prostate cancer.
Another interesting correlation produced by said analysis showed that for each cup of coffee consumed said person would reduce their likelihood of developing prostate cancer by around 1%.
So it seems safe to say that this study and meta-analysis suggest drinking more coffee reduces the chances of having prostate cancer.
Further analysis and more data
According to the collated data, drinking coffee at a higher intake rate can reduce the risk of advanced prostate cancer by over 10%. And compared to those who drink coffee less, avid coffee drinkers are less likely to develop localized prostate cancer. In fact, by a margin of 7%.
That is to say, they are 7% less likely to develop prostate cancer that remains in the prostate ad 12% less likely to develop advanced prostate cancer. Additionally, drinking higher amounts of coffee showed to lower the risks of deadly prostate cancer by 16%. Quite significant differences.
Can we go by statistics alone?
Although these findings are indeed interesting and the data is very compelling, we cannot go by statistics alone. This meta-analysis does show limits in what it can reveal.
For instance, it fails to tell us the cause for this reduction in risk to those that consume more coffee. Not to mention, the data only takes into account coffee consumption. There could be plenty of other factors contributing to this. Moreover, we know lifestyle choices have a big impact on the development of prostate cancer.
We know a healthy diet and increased exercise, for example, significantly reduce the likelihood of prostate cancer. And these factors were not taken into account in this study, since it was comprised primarily of observational data.
Despite the fact that the study showcases some interesting observations, that suggest drinking coffee lowers the risk of developing prostate cancer, it is not conclusive. In other words, further research is required to determine the cause and effect of coffee on prostate cancer. A study further exploring the direct effects of the biologically active molecules in coffee, specifically focused on its effects on prostate cancer, could serve to support this hypothesis.
Until then, however, the research remains promising yet inconclusive.
Check our resources section for further information. Where you can also find inspiration from success and survival stories. Or we can help you connect with a prostate cancer survivor.
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