Drinking four cups of coffee a day 'drastically reduces risk of cirrhosis'
Four cups a day could lower the risk by 65 per cent, researchers say
Drinking two cups of coffee a day could reduce your chances of developing liver cirrhosis by as much as 44%, say researchers at Southampton University
The research team studied data from nine earlier studies involving 430,000 participants, 1,990 of who had cirrhosis
In eight of the studies analyzed, increasing coffee consumption by two cups a day was associated with a significantly reduced risk of cirrhosis. Moreover, the risk continued to decline as more coffee was consumed.
One cup a day could lower the risk of cirrhosis by 22%, researchers found, while two cups reduced the risk by 43%, three cups by 57%, and four cups by 65%.
More than a million people die from cirrhosis each year worldwide. It can be caused by excessive alcohol consumption, immune disorders, hepatitis and fatty liver disease.
“Cirrhosis is potentially fatal and there is no cure as such,” said lead study author Dr. Oliver Kennedy.
“Therefore, it is significant that the risk of developing cirrhosis may be reduced by consumption of coffee, a cheap, ubiquitous and well-tolerated beverage.”
However, he cautioned that it is not currently clear exactly how coffee benefits liver health: “Coffee is a complex mixture containing hundreds of chemical compounds, and it is unknown which of these is responsible for protecting the liver,” he said.
It's also probably a bad idea to start drinking large amounts of coffee for the benefit of your health.
According to a 2013 study, drinking five or more cups a day increases the amount of fat stored in the abdomen.
Even a “moderate intake” of coffee in the average day could also lead to problems such as increased risk of heart disease and diabetes.