In a new study, researchers found that drinking several cups of coffee every day may be linked to a lower risk of developing prostate cancer.
Each additional daily cup of the brew was associated with a reduction in relative risk of nearly 1%.
The research was conducted by a team at the University of Genoa in Italy.
Prostate cancer is the second most common cancer and the sixth leading cause of cancer death in men.
Nearly three out of four cases occur in the developed world, and since the 1970s, new cases of the disease have risen sharply in Asian countries, including Japan, Singapore, and China.
Coffee consumption has been linked to a lower relative risk of liver, bowel, and breast cancers, but as yet, there is no conclusive evidence for its potential role in prostate cancer risk reduction.
In the study, the team trawled research databases for relevant cohort studies published up to September 2020.
They pooled the data from 16: 15 reported on the risk of prostate cancer associated with the highest, compared with the lowest, coffee consumption; 13 reported on the risk associated with an additional daily cup.
The highest level of consumption ranged from 2 to 9 or more cups a day; the lowest level ranged from none to fewer than 2 cups a day.
Compared with the lowest coffee consumption, the highest coffee drinking was linked to a reduction in prostate cancer risk of 9%. And each additional daily cup was associated with a reduction in risk of 1%.
Further refining the analysis to localized and advanced prostate cancer, showed that compared with the lowest intake, the highest intake was linked to a 7% lower risk of localized prostate cancer, and a 12%-16% lower risk for advanced and fatal prostate cancer, respectively.
The team says there are plausible biological explanations for their findings.
Coffee improves glucose metabolism, has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects, and affects sex hormone levels, all of which may influence the initiation, development, and progression of prostate cancer, they point out.
This study suggests that increased coffee consumption may be associated with a reduced risk of prostate cancer.
Further research is still warranted to explore the underlying mechanisms and active compounds in coffee.
One author of the study is Marina Sartini.
The study is published in the BMJ Open.
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