Pistolette is quitting coffee for a couple weeks, so I thought I’d revisit the topic myself.
I noted back in March that I’d started my eighth coffee reduction earlier than usual this year. Normally I wait until the weather gets hot, but this year I discovered the joy of dandelion coffee: roasted dandelion root + roasted chicory root = delicious.
(Thanks to Elana for the recipe.)
I was feeling good, everything was groovy — and then something happened. The Harvard School of Public Health announced the result of a study, which indicated that coffee may reduce risk of lethal prostate cancer in men. Among other things, the study found:
- Men who consumed the most coffee (six or more cups daily) had nearly a 20% lower risk of developing any form of prostate cancer.
- The inverse association with coffee was even stronger for aggressive prostate cancer. Men who drank the most coffee had a 60% lower risk of developing lethal prostate cancer.
- The reduction in risk was seen whether the men drank decaffeinated or regular coffee, and does not appear to be due to caffeine.
- Even drinking one to three cups of coffee per day was associated with a 30% lower risk of lethal prostate cancer.
Well, that took the wind out of my coffee-free sails. After all, cancer prompted my dad to have a radical prostatectomy several years ago, so the risk would appear to run in my family. I’d like to avoid that if possible. If gulping gallons of coffee might make a significant difference, well, why not?
So I got back on the bean, and I’ve been swilling java all summer long.
And you know what? It kind of sucks. I’ve enjoyed taking half the year off from coffee.
Hopefully further research will identify the beneficial components of coffee, antioxidants perhaps, and maybe I’ll find another way to ingest them.