|My, what puffy livers. . .|
Drinking more coffee might help reduce the kind of liver damage that’s associated with overindulging in food and alcohol, a review of existing studies suggests.Not that I needed this as an excuse to drink more coffee.
Researchers analyzed data from nine previously published studies with a total of more than 430,000 participants and found that drinking two additional cups of coffee a day was linked to a 44% lower risk of developing liver cirrhosis.
“Cirrhosis is potentially fatal and there is no cure as such,” said lead study author Dr. Oliver Kennedy of Southampton University in the U.K.
“Therefore, it is significant that the risk of developing cirrhosis may be reduced by consumption of coffee, a cheap, ubiquitous and well-tolerated beverage,” Kennedy added by email.Of course, it could just be that people who drink more coffee drink less booze. One would hope they would control for this, but it's certainly not mentioned in the article. You'd be amazed at the simple things scientists overlook in the rush to get stuff published.
Cirrhosis kills more than one million people every year worldwide. It can be caused by hepatitis infections, excessive alcohol consumption, immune disorders, and fatty liver disease, which is tied to obesity and diabetes.
Kennedy and colleagues did a pooled analysis of average coffee consumption across earlier studies to see how much adding two additional cups each day might influence the odds of liver disease.
Combined, the studies included 1,990 patients with cirrhosis.
In eight of the nine studies analyzed, increasing coffee consumption by two cups a day was associated with a significant reduction in the risk of cirrhosis.
In all but one study, the risk of cirrhosis continued to decline as daily cups of coffee climbed.
Compared to no coffee consumption, researchers estimated one cup a day was tied to a 22% lower risk of cirrhosis. With two cups, the risk dropped by 43%, while it declined 57% for three cups and 65% with four cups.
Pirate's Cove has the weekly "Sorta Blogless Sunday Pinup" and links. Also linked in Wombat-socho's "Rule 5 Sunday: Disney Girls" at The Other McCain.