Consuming the right amount of coffee is healthy. Among the obvious coffee benefits is boosting focus and brain health. But that’s not the only benefit of coffee. One huge study1 back in 2009 finds that coffee reduces prostate cancer risk.
Unlike the benefits of coffee on erectile dysfunction, in this study, it’s not the caffeine that’s responsible for it. Instead, non-caffeine components in the coffee such as various antioxidants are responsible for lowering prostate cancer risk.
We observed a strong inverse association between coffee consumption and risk of lethal prostate cancer. The association appears to be related to non-caffeine components of coffee.
Dr. Jennifer Ashton explains more in a CBS News interview.
Additionally, Kathryn M. Wilson, Ph.D., a fellow from Harvard told Sciencedaily coffee consumption has an effect on levels of sex hormones, as well as insulin and glucose metabolism. All of these play a role in prostate cancer development.
The researchers find that men who drink 1 to 3 cups of coffee a day lower the risk of developing a deadly form of prostate cancer by 30%. What’s even more interesting, the more coffee a man drinks, the risk is much lower. In the study, those who drink 6 cups or more coffee a day have 60% lower risk of prostate cancer.
This study is one of the longest and biggest following 48,000 men over a period of 20 years. Regardless the coffee is decaffeinated or not, both are beneficial in lowering risk of prostate cancer.
What’s In The Coffee That Reduces Prostate Cancer Risk?
One of the limitations of the study, it is based on association and controlled. The data is gathered through interview and participants reports their lifestyles.
While the mechanism is not clear why coffee reduces prostate cancer risk, the American Institute for Cancer Research says it has cancer-fighting properties.
These cancer-fighting properties include;
- Chlorogenic acid – an antioxidant compound and a major phenol found in coffee.
- Quinic acid – a phytochemical responsible for the acidic taste of coffee
- Cafestol and Kahweol – both are compound extracts from coffee beans during brewing. These compounds are rich coffee via boiling and French press.
- N-methylpyridinium(NMB) – this is produced through roasting, which may lead to the production of more potent antioxidants.
Other Conditions In Which Coffee Can Be Beneficial
More good news for coffee lovers…like me. It’s not just lowering risk of prostate cancer, but there are other health conditions in which coffee is beneficial.
There are studies showing coffee lowers risk of the following health conditions such as diabetes, Parkinson’s disease, dementia and various cancers including;
- Liver Cancer
- Breast Cancer
- Oral Cancer
- Uterine Cancer
- Brain Cancer
- Colon Cancer
- Endometrial Cancer
- Lung Cancer
- Skin Cancer
Should You Start Drinking More Coffee Today?
While in the study, 6 or cups of coffee provide more benefits, not everyone can drink that much. Everyone is different and has a different level of tolerance to coffee.
For instance, there are people who can drink 6 cups or more without problems. On the other hand, some people feels enough with just a cup of coffee.
So, find how much coffee you can tolerate without feeling jittery or anxious. Additionally, if you feel acidic when you drink coffee, try cold brewing your coffee instead of preparing it traditionally.
Another factor in maximizing coffee health benefits is preparation. Many people today prefer to have creamer and sugar in their coffee. There are also a lot of people who like to drink instant and 3-in-1 coffee.
This is not the way to prepare a healthy coffee. Make sure the coffee is black and if you add sugar to it, make sure it’s minimal and if possible, use healthy sweeteners like stevia or xylitol.
Coffee Freshness Matters
When you can, roast, grind and brew your own coffee. Doing it this way ensures the freshness of the coffee. You can buy raw coffee beans, which are ready for roasting. You don’t have to buy and own a hi-tech coffee roaster, but a simple cooking pan will do.
You might say it’s a hustle. However, the taste alone is worth it. Here’s an interesting TED Talks on this. Although, it’s somewhat promotional for a coffee roaster, a lot of good things you can get from this talk.
After all, you don’t need an expensive coffee roaster. Just roast them using a conventional method using a pan or a popcorn popper and you’re done.
While many of the beneficial components in coffee are already known, there may be others that aren’t, yet. But one thing is clear. Coffee is healthy when consumed in the right amount.
Therefore, make sure you drink your coffee in moderation. Keep in mind, too much of a good thing is bad. Also, remember that caffeine is a drug and a stimulant. Too much caffeine can result in the feeling of anxiousness and jittery.
So, always keep in mind consume the right amount of coffee. Everyone is different, and you have to find the right amount of coffee for your body’s needs. Of course, don’t forget to drink it black. When you can, avoid adding sugar and simply drink it pure coffee.
Most of you who are not into drinking sugar-free coffee might say it’s bitter. Yes, it is! But it’s coffee and it should taste that way. The good news is that, once your taste is accustomed to it, you’ll never go back drinking coffee with sugar.