That Fourth Cup of Coffee Could Save Your Life
Very often at the top of the list of things to avoid is … coffee.
Caffeine is usually to blame for certain side-effects on the body such as: insomnia, nervousness, restlessness, stomach upset, nausea, vomiting, palpitations and headaches.
There have been previous data linking coffee to heart disease and cancer of the bladder.
More recent information, however, shows that drinking at least 4 cups of coffee a day could lower your risk of having cancer of the uterus.
In the November issue of Cancer Epidemiology, Dr. Edward Giovannucci and Youjin Je, a doctorate candidate from the Harvard School of Public Health presents their data regarding the protective effects of caffeine consumption and endometrial cancer.
The study involved 67,470 women aged 34 to 59 years. The data revealed that drinking less than 4 cups of coffee per day had no effect on a person’s risk of getting endometrial cancer.
However, drinking 4 cups or more of coffee per day decreased the risk of developing cancer of the uterus by 25%. This translates to decreasing the incidence of endometrial cancer from 56 cases per 100,000 women down to 35 cases per 100,000 women.
Endometrial or uterine cancer is most common in women above 50 years old. Although, a few cases have been documented as early as age 40.
The cause is mostly unknown but it has been linked to exposure to the hormone, estrogen. The following women are most at risk:
1. Women taking hormone replacement therapy (HRT)
2. Presence of diabetes
3. History of infertility or women who have never been pregnant
4. History of irregular menstruation
6. Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) cases
7. Early onset of menstruation (before the age of 12) and/or late onset of menopause (beyond the age of 50)
Cancer of the uterus may present with heavy bleeding, pelvic pain or spotting even after menopause.
An ultrasound and sampling of the endometrial lining will confirm the diagnosis.
Treatment involves surgery and/or radio- and chemotherapy.
The 5-year survival rate of endometrial cancer that has not yet spread is 95%, while cancers that have spread to distant organs have a poorer survival rate of 23%.
The key is always early detection. Yearly visits with your physician even without any signs and symptoms could spell a big difference in terms of prognosis.
If this information is beginning to scare you, then it would be wise not to skip that fourth cup of Joe.