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Coffee may prevent liver disease: Study

Drinking coffee may help prevent the liver disease alcoholic cirrhosis, according to a long term study.

india Updated: Jun 13, 2006 04:55 IST

Drinking coffee may help prevent the liver disease alcoholic cirrhosis, according to a long term study.

The study of more than 1,25,000 people found that for each cup of coffee they drank per day, participants were 22 per cent less likely to develop alcoholic cirrhosis.

Long term, heavy alcohol use is the most common cause of cirrhosis in developed countries, which progressively destroys healthy liver tissue and replaces it with scar tissue.

Most alcohol drinkers, however, never develop cirrhosis and researchers believe other factors that may play a role include genetics, diet and nutrition, smoking and the interaction of alcohol with other toxins that damage the liver.

About 80 per cent of Americans drink coffee, averaging 3.2 cups a day, the study which was released on Monday, noted.

The authors said they could not determine whether it was caffeine or another ingredient in coffee which had the protective effect.

Drinking tea had no impact on the development of liver disease, but the authors noted that tea typically has less caffeine than coffee and that it was an uncommon habit among the study participants.