Good news, coffee fanatics! Drinking more coffee may help reduce the risk of developing liver damage that can be caused by drinking excessive amounts of alcohol. A recent study completed by a group of researchers shows that “drinking just two more cups of coffee every day may lower the risk of developing the liver condition by 44 percent,” according to CNN. A team of researchers analyzed nine studies that focused on the consumption of coffee in relation to the liver disease known as cirrhosis. Cirrhosis results in chronic liver damage that can lead to liver scarring and eventually liver failure and is caused by alcohol abuse. Other common causes are obesity, diabetes and chronic viral infections of the liver.
The review, published by the Alimentary Pharmacology and Therapeutics journal on January 25, took into account over 430,000 participants that accumulated from the nine studies. Out of the nine studies, the longest one lasted close to 20 years. The data from these studies show that “one cup per day was associated with a 22% lower risk of cirrhosis and four cups per day was associated with a 65% lower risk,” according to Dr. Oliver Kennedy. Kennedy is on the research team at Southampton University in the United Kingdom.
Kennedy also advised that coffee “will not fully counteract the harmful effect of excess alcohol consumption.” In other words, the positive effects of coffee are not strong enough to cancel out the negative effects of drinking. While this is valuable research, it’s important to keep in mind that maintaining healthy eating and drinking habits is the best way to prevent such liver diseases.