If ever there were a real life, honest to goodness panacea, it would surely be coffee. Daily coffee consumption has been linked to lower risks of cardiovascular disease, liver disease, breast cancer, prostate cancer, skin cancer, obesity, Parkinson’s, and lower instances of depression and suicide. If you are looking for a cure for what ails, there’s a better than likely chance some scientist somewhere has studied coffee as a potential cure and a good chance that a link between the two was found.
And now, a new study from the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute finds regular coffee consumption to be linked with longer survival in individuals with metastatic colorectal cancer as well as a decreased risk in the cancer worsening.
As reported by the Harvest Gazette, a study recently published in JAMA Oncology took a look at nearly 1,200 metastatic colorectal cancer patients, collecting data for the study over the course of 12 years. For the study, researchers compared the Overall Survival (OS) and Progression-Free Survival (PFS) for the participants, using the hazard ratio (HR) as the key metric. For this study, those who didn’t consume coffee would have an HR of 1; anything below a 1 represents a decrease in risk. The study found the HRs for both OS and PFS to decrease as coffee consumption went up, ranging from .95 and .93, respectively, for those to who drank one cup a day all the way up to .64 and .78, respectively, for those who reported drinking at least four cups daily.
As with most scientific research of late into the healthful effects of coffee, this study is purely observational, meaning no causal relation was able to be established between coffee consumption and decreased negative impact of metastatic colorectal cancer. And as such, there are no recommendations yet for metastatic colon cancer patients to take up a coffee habit as a means of treatment. Still, the study’s senior author Kimmie Ng states:
Although it is premature to recommend a high intake of coffee as a potential treatment for colorectal cancer, our study suggests that drinking coffee is not harmful and may potentially be beneficial.
So while science hasn't declared coffee the magical cure-all, they continue to confirm what I've been saying all along: why not drink a little coffee? It couldn't hurt.