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Four cups of coffee per day can cut endometrial cancer risk by 18%


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(NaturalNews) While there has been a lot of research both in favor and against one of America's favorite drinks, this latest bit of research leaves you feeling a little less guilty after having that second, or third, or even fourth cup of coffee.

The results of a new study suggest that drinking up to four cups of coffee a day may reduce your risk of developing cancer of the endometrium, or the lining of the uterus, according to researchers.

Published in the February issue of Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention, scientists found that drinking roughly 26 to 37 ounces of coffee per day reduced endometrial cancer by up to 18 percent.

"We were not surprised by the results that a high versus low intake of coffee was associated with a reduced risk for endometrial cancer, because they were consistent with what has been observed in previous studies," said study author Melissa Merritt, who is also a research fellow in cancer epidemiology at Imperial College London in England.

Study: Women who drank about four cups of coffee per day were less likely to develop cancer of the endometrium, compared with those who consumed less than one cup a day

Researchers reached their results using data on nearly half a million women from two large ongoing studies and studying the dietary habits of more than 2,800 women with cancer of the endometrium.

"We used similar methods to investigate the association between coffee intake and endometrial cancer as previous studies," said Merritt. "This is important so we can compare results across different studies."

During the study, researches found that one trial, which included drinking 37 ounces of coffee a day, reduced endometrial cancer risk by 18 percent. Another trial involving consumption of 26 ounces per day identified a similar reduction, reports CBS News.

After evaluating 84 foods and nutrients, Merritt's team found that, "For most other dietary factors, there was no consistent association with endometrial cancer risk."

It's important to note that, while researchers did identify a link, they did not find a cause-and-effect relationship between coffee drinking and lower risk of endometrial cancer. Scientists also did not differentiate between drinking decaf or regular coffee; therefore, Merritt said she couldn't comment on which one is better.

Dr. Robert Morgan, a professor of medical oncology at the City of Hope Comprehensive Cancer Center in Duarte, Calif., said the new study is "validating other studies showing coffee has a beneficial effect in decreasing endometrial cancer."

Antioxidants found in coffee may prevent or slow cell damage

While researchers aren't entirely sure why coffee may help lower the risk of endometrial cancer, Merritt suggests that one reason might be because coffee reduces estrogen levels in the body, changing the balance of hormones.

The risk of endometrial cancer increases when the balance between estrogen and progesterone shifts and leans more towards estrogen, according to the American Cancer Society. Being overweight, beginning menstruation earlier than normal and late menopause may increase the risk of endometrial cancer.

Other risk factors include having an inherited form of colorectal cancer, never being pregnant or being infertile, and using tamoxifen to prevent or treat breast cancer. Tamoxifen is a hormone therapy drug that blocks the actions of estrogen.

Endometrial cancer claims more than 10,000 lives each year in the United States

In the U.S., cancer of the endometrium is the most common cancer of the female reproductive organs, according to Cancer.org. Roughly 54,000 cases are expected to be diagnosed this year, with more than 10,000 of them likely to be fatal.

This type of cancer is more common among women over 45 years old, with about three out of four cases being diagnosed in women ages 55 and older.

Sources:

http://www.drugs.com

http://www.idph.state.il.us

http://www.cancer.org

http://www.cbsnews.com

http://www.techtimes.com

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