Another “Is Coffee Okay for My Health?” Article

Coffee cup with heart-shaped steam vertical format

What You Need to Know: Daily coffee consumption may reduce the risk of gastric cancer in high–risk populations, especially among women.

Background: Coffee may reduce the risk of diabetes, cancer of the head and neck region, and liver cancer. But does it change our risk for stamoch (gastic) cancer? Despite experimental evidence showing chemopreventive effects of coffee–related compounds on gastric carcinogenesis, epidemiologic studies generally do not support coffee–gastric cancer associations. Observational data are lacking among high–risk populations with sufficient regular coffee consumption.

The Study: The authors examined the association between caffeinated coffee intake and stomach cancer risk in a population-based cohort that enrolled 63,257 Chinese men and women aged 45-74 years between 1993 and 1998 in Singapore.

  • Incident gastric cancer cases (n=647) were identified after a mean follow-up of 14.7 years.
  • Biomarkers of Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) infection were measured in a subset of gastric cancer cases with blood collected prior to cancer diagnosis and their matched controls.
  • In the total cohort, daily versus non-daily coffee intake was associated with a statistically non-significant decrease in gastric cancer risk [hazards ratio (HR)=0.85; 95% confidence interval (CI): 0.69, 1.04).
  • In women, the inverse association strengthened and reached statistical significance (HR=0.63; 95% CI: 0.46, 0.87: This means that women who drank coffee lowered their risk by more than a third).
  • In analyses restricted to never smokers and nondrinkers of alcohol, inverse associations strengthened in the total cohort (HR=0.69; 95% CI: 0.52, 0.91) and in women (HR=0.52; 95% CI: 0.37, 0.74).
  • There was no coffee-gastric cancer risk association among men, regardless of smoking status or alcohol consumption.
  • Similar results were observed in the nested case-control study after adjustment for H. pylori infection.

Coffee consumption appears to be associated with a lower risk of stomach consumption, at least among Chinese women. If you consume coffee, please do so in moderation. I’m Dr. Michael Hunter, and I prefer a small latte.

The small print: The material presented herein is informational only, and is not designed to provide specific guidance for an individual. Please check with a valued health care provider with any questions or concerns. As for me, I am a Harvard- , Yale- and UPenn-educated radiation oncologist, and I practice in the Seattle, WA (USA) area. I feel genuinely privileged to be able to share with you. If you enjoyed today’s offering, please consider clicking the follow button at the bottom of this page.

Available now: Understand Colon Cancer in 60 Minutes; Understand Brain Glioma in 60 Minutes. Both can be found at the Apple Ibooks store. Coming Soon for iPad: Understand Breast Cancer in 60 Minutes; Understand Colon Cancer in 60 Minute; Understand Colon Cancer in 60 Minutes; Understand Brain Glioma in 60 Minutes. Thank you.

Reference: Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention, 03/11/2014

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