Why coffee may be a pick-me-up for men fighting prostate cancer

New research says that if you’re a man who loves coffee, you can feel good about pouring yourself another cup. This news is from a recent study that’s found an association between a genotype possibly revving up the body’s rate of metabolizing caffeine that may improve a man’s survival rates from prostate cancer. 

Prostate cancer and coffee consumption

Many previous studies have found something special in that cup of coffee.  Over the years, researchers have carefully scrutinized coffee’s dietary components and have come up with mostly favorable results. Results from these studies have shown that moderate coffee consumption (three to four cups a day) is possibly linked to reducing the risk of heart disease, diabetes, Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, and even extending lifespan.  

But how does this relate to prostate cancer, the second most common cancer diagnosed in men, especially over 50? It’s well-documented that lifestyle modifications have demonstrated a positive impact on preventing this disease.  But coffee consumption’s effect on prostate cancer is still unclear without any specific recommendations to provide for men. 

Study findings

The findings of this new study, published in the journal European Urology Oncology, included dates from studies for prostate cancer cases that came from the PRACTICAL Consortium.  PRACTICAL, stands for Prostate Cancer Association Group to Investigate Cancer Associated Alterations in the Genome, which included more than 5,700 prostate cancer cases from different studies. 

The men, who were part of this study, included those on active surveillance, those receiving treatment for prostate cancer, and those whose prostate cancer had spread beyond the prostate.

Each man filled out a food frequency questionnaire on recalling their food and beverage consumption dating back to varying lengths of time. From this information, researchers then compared men’s coffee consumption.  Men drinking at least two or more cups of coffee each day were categorized as having a high coffee intake compared to men with a low intake, defined as no more than three cups of coffee per week. 

Researchers found that men with prostate cancer, who had the CYP1A2 AA genotype and drank a high intake of coffee, had a link showing a longer survival rate or lifespan. 

This finding is theoretical as more information is needed to conclude that men can rely on drinking more coffee to improve their survivability of prostate cancer. Other studies have also looked at specific foods, like tomatoes and milk, to understand their impact on prostate cancer. However, studying food and beverages’ impact on helping prevent or slow cancer is complex. There can be many differences in how a food is cooked or mixed with other foods that can sway the findings of these studies. 

Many of the scientists associated with this study stated that in the future, after additional research is gathered, based on certain men with this genotype, their physician may recommend men diagnosed with prostate cancer drink more coffee. But until more evidence is essembled, this remains uncertain. 

It appears that coffee intake is associated with a more extended prostate cancer–specific survival in certain groups. However, more research is necessary to better understand how men may benefit and why.

It is recommended that men with prostate cancer follow healthy habits of eating primarily whole foods, exercising regularly, practicing stress reduction techniques, and prioritizing sleep. And if they enjoy drinking coffee, go ahead. It might give them the edge needed to beat back prostate cancer. 

Dr. David Samadi is the Director of Men’s Health and Urologic Oncology at St. Francis Hospital in Long Island. He’s a renowned and highly successful board certified Urologic Oncologist Expert and Robotic Surgeon in New York City, regarded as one of the leading prostate surgeons in the U.S., with a vast expertise in prostate cancer treatment and Robotic-Assisted Laparoscopic Prostatectomy.  Dr. Samadi is a medical contributor to NewsMax TV and is also the author of The Ultimate MANual, Dr. Samadi’s Guide to Men’s Health and Wellness, available online both on Amazon and Barnes & Noble. Visit Dr. Samadi’s websites at robotic oncology and prostate cancer 911.

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