Coffee good for the liver? Study highlights health benefits

Coffee is good for the liver, according to a recently published study. Additionally, increasing your coffee consumption can help prevent deaths related to liver disease. A group of researchers looked at data from previous studies on coffee and liver cancer. They found that drinking more than two cups of coffee a day might offer protection against this.

Is Coffee Good For The Liver?

coffee good for the liver new research health benefits

So in their published article, the group describes how to calculate their numbers. The researchers thus explain why they believe governments should encourage people to drink more coffee. They referred to previous study results that said those who drank 2 to 3 cups a day had a 38% reduced risk of HCC (hepatocellular carcinoma) compared to non-coffee drinkers. This also indicated a 46% reduced risk of death from chronic liver disease. When people drank four or more cups a day, the risk reduction for HCC is 41%. For death from liver cancer it is 71%. Other cohort studies have also reported risk reductions of a similar magnitude.

Several studies over the past few years have shown that drinking coffee has many health benefits when consumed regularly. One of those benefits that stand out from the rest is a lower risk of developing liver cancer. In this new study, researchers wondered what would happen if all the non-coffee drinkers in the world consumed two or four cups of coffee a day. So the Australian research team decided to assess the potential impact of increased coffee consumption on global mortality. They examined the effect of consuming more than two cups and more than four cups per day per capita on liver-related deaths.

Study results

woman with coffee cup sitting in front of the laptop while surfing

To check whether coffee is good for the liver, the researchers extracted and examined data in the Global Burden of Disease 2016 dataset. They filtered the study results for statistics on liver cancer. The team found there were 1,240,201 deaths from liver cancer that year. The researchers then pulled statistics on coffee drinking and added both sets of data to a model showing associations between coffee drinking and reductions in liver cancer. The model showed that if everyone in the world had had two cups of coffee a day in 2016, there would have been 452,861 fewer deaths from liver cancer. And if all four cups had drunk, there would have been 723,287 fewer deaths.

The researchers believe that governments and health officials should start promoting coffee consumption to reduce cancers in the liver. “Coffee clearly helps your liver,” said Dr. Douglas Dieterich, hepatologist at the Department of Liver Medicine and Gastroenterology on Mount Sinai. This study shows the effects of previous studies on a larger scale. Dieterich also said he recommends coffee to some of his patients as it can help with certain liver diseases. Coffee is also good for primary biliary cholangitis (PBC). This is an autoimmune disease of the liver that affects the biliary tract and can lead to cirrhosis, the researchers said. The mechanism by which coffee offers protection against liver disease has not been clearly established, but it appears that caffeine is not the protective chemical. Of the many compounds in coffee, diterpene and chlorogenic acid are the most studied in liver disease, according to the study’s authors.

Medical perspective

capsules with coffee beans and green plant leaves

High coffee consumption was also correlated with improved insulin sensitivity. This suggests that coffee may have protective effects for liver disease progression by weakening insulin-induced liver fibrosis. Based on the study results, the researchers said coffee was an easily accessible and relatively safe health measure. In addition, this could theoretically lower liver mortality worldwide. However, the Australian research team also stresses that more research is needed to confirm the benefits of coffee against high mortality.

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