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If you drink like a fish, this news is for you. New research shows that downing more coffee may help reduce the liver damage caused by alcohol, Reuters reports. Researchers found that those who drank two cups of coffee every day are 44% less likely to develop cirrhosis.
Researchers at the United Kingdom's Southampton University surveyed nine previously published studies that included 1,990 patients diagnosed with cirrhosis, which is irreversible liver damage that can be caused by excessive drinking, along with hepatitis infections, immune disorders, and fatty liver disease.
The number drops to 22% for one cup of joe and increases to 57% for three cups. And when these researchers say coffee, they don't mean caramel macchiatos or other specialty concoctions; boiled versus filtered coffee was tested in one study, with filtered offering the greatest benefit.
While coffee seems like a magical cure-all, it can't reverse liver damage caused by lifestyle factors, meaning coffee is not a license to drink yourself silly and undo it all in the morning.
"Unfortunately, although coffee contains compounds that have antioxidant effects and anti-inflammatory properties, drinking a few cups of coffee a day cannot undo the systematic damage that is the result of being overweight or obese, sedentary, excessive alcohol consumption, or drastically mitigate an unhealthy diet,"
Samantha Heller, a senior clinical nutritionist at New York University's Langone Medical Center, told Reuters. Coffee also has other health benefits. It can prevent heart disease and even protect the liver from alcohol damage.
In all but one study, the risk of cirrhosis continued to decline as daily cups of coffee climbed. Cirrhosis is potentially fatal and there is no cure for it,” said lead study author Dr. Oliver Kennedy of Southampton University in the U.K.
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