Coffee drinking could help prevent head and neck cancer

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Scientists from Universidade de São Paulo and elsewhere found that coffee drinking may help prevent head and neck cancer.

Cancer is a disease in which cells of the body grow out of control. Cancers of the head and neck include cancers that start in several places in the head and throat, not including brain cancers or cancers of the eye.

Alcohol and tobacco are major risk factors for cancers of the head and neck.

All tobacco products, including cigarettes, cigars, pipes, and smokeless tobacco (chewing tobacco, snuff, or a type of chewing tobacco called betel quid) are linked to head and neck cancer (except for salivary gland cancers).

Drinking any type of alcohol, such as beer, wine, or liquor, also raises the risk of getting cancers of the mouth, throat, and voice box.

There is still no consistent evidence regarding the role of coffee in head and neck cancer.

In the current study, researchers aimed to analyze coffee drinking as a method to prevent head and neck cancer in Brazil, one of the main coffee-producing countries, from January 2011 to February 2017.

The team examined patients in 5 medical centers for head and neck cancer with 839 cases and 842 non-cancer people in hospitals as controls.

The results showed that cumulative drinking of more than two cups of coffee per day is an important protective factor against head and neck cancer.

Smoking increased the cancer risk by 22 times in people who smoke more than 50 packs per year, and the habit of ingesting more than 155 ml of alcohol per day represented approximately twice as high a risk.

Based on the findings, the team suggests that coffee drinking is linked to a lower chance of head and neck cancer.

The research was published in Nutrition and Cancer and conducted by Luciane Bresciani Salaroli et al.

If you care about health, please read studies about how tea and coffee influence your risk of high blood pressure, and vitamin D supplements could strongly reduce cancer death.

For more information about health, please see recent studies about how drinking milk affects the risks of heart disease and cancer and results showing higher intake of dairy foods linked to higher prostate cancer risk.

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