Coffee's benefits get healthy jolt

Coffee's benefits get healthy jolt
New studies show it can reduce risk of illnesses like diabetes, cirrhosis
By MARIE McCULLOUGH, Philadelphia Inquirer
First published: Saturday, July 22, 2006
PHILADELPHIA -- Over the centuries, coffee has been cursed for making soldiers undependable, women infertile, peasants rebellious and worse.
In the 1970s and '80s, coffee's name was still mud. It was connected -- tenuously or incorrectly, experts now say -- to pancreatic cancer, heart attacks, birth defects, miscarriage, osteoporosis and other ill effects.
After all, coffee is chock-full of the drug 1,3,7-trimethylxanthine -- better known as caffeine (even decaf has caf) -- plus a whole lot of other chemicals and additives.
Recently, though, the buzz on brew has been good. Drink enough of it, research suggests, and you'll lower your risk of diabetes, liver cirrhosis, Parkinson's disease, gallstones and suicide. You'll also sprint better.
Sit back, sip some drip and ponder the latest research:
Seven out of 10 studies that followed huge groups of people for many years, including Finnish twins and American nurses, have linked coffee to a reduced risk of type 2 diabetes. Last month in the Archives of Internal Medicine, an 11-year study of 28,000 postmenopausal women in Iowa found that coffee drinkers had less type 2 diabetes than nondrinkers.
This doesn't prove coffee is protective. Eating lots of nuts was linked to just as much diabetes-risk reduction in another analysis of the nurses' diets.
Furthermore, while the circumstantial evidence is abundant, it's confusing. A 20 percent decrease in diabetes risk turned up among the nurses who drank only one cup a day, while the Iowans had to guzzle six or more to see such a benefit. It's also unclear what ingredient is at work, since decaf appears more protective than caffeinated coffee in some studies, but not others.
Population studies from the United States, Japan, Europe and Norway suggest coffee protects the liver from the effects of alcohol.
The first report of a strong link, published in 1992, was updated last month in the Archives of Internal Medicine. Among 125,500 members of the Kaiser Permanente health plan, heavy alcohol drinkers cut their chance of cirrhosis by 20 percent per cup of coffee a day; four cups correlated with an 80 percent risk reduction. Liver enzyme levels also were healthier in imbibers of both coffee and alcohol.
While not technically addictive, caffeine increases the production of dopamine, a brain chemical crucial to pleasure and motivation.
The brain cells that make dopamine stop working in Parkinson's disease, and studies using animal models suggest caffeine wards off Parkinson's by protecting these cells. The dopamine connection may explain why both the Kaiser Permanente study and the Nurses Health Study found that coffee drinkers were significantly less likely to commit suicide. OK, now here's the bad news. Like all drugs, the world's favorite pick-me-up has side effects. Caffeine increases blood pressure and heart rate. It can cause palpitations, insomnia, tremors, diarrhea and increased urination. Caffeine withdrawal can cause headaches, drowsiness, depression and grumpiness.


-- Kem da Gui --
yaar coffe da ik nuksaan v bada hai.. in office coffe pee pee bura haal ho janda..ghre aake neend hi nahi aundi .. neend hi mukati aa coffe ne.. :(


bai some Wall street office have promoted caffinated water in meeting rooms where they have important docs and they do not allow actual coffee to avoid spilling