Published November 23, 2011
Drinking two or more cups of coffee a day may lower women's risk of developing endometrial cancer, American researchers found.
Scientists at the Harvard School of Public Health analyzed the effect of coffee intake on 67,470 women and found that 672 developed endometrial cancers, which affect the lining of the uterus, over a 26-year period.
Those who drank more than four cups of coffee a day were 25 percent less likely to develop the cancer, while those who had two or three cups had a reduced risk of seven percent, according to the study, published in the journal Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers and Prevention.
The same link was found in women who drank decaffeinated coffee, with those drinking two cups per day at a 22 percent reduced risk for the cancer.
"Coffee has already been shown to be protective against diabetes due to its effect on insulin," senior researcher Edward Giovannucci said. "So we hypothesized that we'd see a reduction in some cancers, as well."
Giovannucci also warned about the dangers of drinking coffee and smoking.
"Coffee has long been linked with smoking, and if you drink coffee and smoke, the positive effects of coffee are going to be more than outweighed by the negative effects of smoking," he added. "However, laboratory testing has found that coffee has much more antioxidants than most vegetables and fruits."