Drinking three cups of coffee daily may reduce
the risk of mortality from liver cirrhosis, suggest researchers
The team from the Norwegian Institute of Public Health in
Oslo followed up
51,306 adults who underwent screening for cardiovascular disease
from 1977 to 1983. During this time, 53 deaths were cirrhosis-related,
and 36 of these deaths were attributed to alcoholic cirrhosis.
The relative risk of liver cirrhosis, adjusted for sex,
age, alcohol use and
other major cardiovascular risk factors, seemed to be reduced
by 40 per cent for those drinking three daily cups of coffee.
For alcoholic cirrhosis the results were identical, reported
the researchers in this month's Annals of Epidemiology.
"The present study confirms the existence of an inverse
association between coffee consumption and liver cirrhosis,"
concluded the researchers, although they could not explain
which component of coffee was producing the protective effect.
The beneficial ingredient is unlikely to be caffeine however.
Coffee has previously been related to a reduced risk for
onset of diabetes,
although some studies suggest that heavy coffee-drinkers can
increase their chances of developing heart disease.