Coffee cuts risk of skin cancer

Fri, 10/28/2011 - 08:55

People particularly women who drink coffee are at reduced risk of developing basal cell carcinoma (BCC), the most-common form of skin cancer, according to the latest research presented recently during a meeting of the American Association for Cancer Research in Boston.

The research surveyed coffee consumption among 113,000 participants and the risk of three forms of skin cancer: BCC, squamous cell carcinoma, and the more deadly melanoma.

The data showed that women who consumed more than three cups of caffeinated coffee a day had a 20 percent lower risk of basal cell carcinoma compared with those who drank less than a cup a month. For men, the reduced risk was more modest, just 9 percent. But those percentages add up, given that about 1 million new cases of BCC are diagnosed each year, according to the news release.

The data was taken from the Nurses’ Health Study out of Brigham and Women’s Hospital and the Health Professionals’ Follow-Up Study at the Harvard School of Public Health. Researchers found 25,480 incidences of skin cancer: 22,786 of BCC, 1,953 of squamous cell carcinoma and 741 of melanoma.

The study says that there was no link between coffee consumption and squamous cell carcinoma or melanoma. Drinkers of decaffeinated coffee showed no decrease in skin-cancer risk.

Though easily treated through minor surgery and not typically deadly, untreated BCC can spread. Those with a history of BB are at increased risk of squamous cell carcinoma and melanoma. (rei)





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