Can Coffee Really Reduce Risk of Deadly Skin Cancer?

Can Coffee Really Reduce Risk of Deadly Skin Cancer?

No one needs a health-related reason to drink coffee in the morning, though knowing that we could be boosting health with that daily dose of caffeine would certainly make things better. Indeed, drinking coffee can lead to numerous health benefits. The latest study has even found that drinking coffee could lead to a reduced risk of most serious or ‘deadly’ skin cancers, including malignant melanoma.

For the study, published Tuesday in JNCI: Journal of the National Cancer Institute, researchers analyzed data from the NIH-AARP Diet and Health Study on more than 447,000 non-Hispanic whites, who are at higher risk of skin cancer. Participants filled out questionnaires, answering questions about eating habits, including coffee drinking. The study lasted 10 years.

Similar to the findings of previous research, the study found that those who consumed 4 or more cups of coffee each day had a 20% lower risk for developing malignant melanoma than those who drank less coffee.  What’s more, it was noted that the more one drank coffee, the greater protection granted. And as one might ask, decaffeinated coffee didn’t offer the same protective-effects as caffeinated.

The study says:

“Background: Cutaneous melanoma is the fifth most common cancer in the United States. Modifiable risk factors, with the exception of exposure to ultraviolet radiation (UVR), are poorly understood. Coffee contains numerous bioactive compounds and may be associated inversely with melanoma. However, previous epidemiological evidence is limited.

…Conclusions: Higher coffee intake was associated with a modest decrease in risk of melanoma in this large US cohort study. Additional investigations of coffee intake and its constituents, particularly caffeine, with melanoma are warranted.”

Complimenting coffee’s anti-cancer protection, past studies have found that coffee may also provide protection against not only skin cancer, but liver and prostate cancer as well. A study in the journal Gastroenterology found that consumption of two cups of coffee each day was associated with a 43% reduction in the risk of liver cancer. Additionally, a meta-analysis showed that coffee can reduce the risk of liver cancer by 50%, with the risk reductions being higher for men at 62%.

Further research has found that four or more cups of coffee per day can lower the risk of prostate cancer by 59%. Further, five cups per day can decrease breast cancer by 29% overall. Specifically, the risk of oestrogen receptor negative cancers dropped by 59%, and postmenopausal cancer by 37%.

Past research has also shown coffee to help prevent other types of non-melanoma skin cancers, but this is the first large-scale study to look specifically at malignant melanoma.

For more cool coffee news, check out some other coffee health benefits here.