Study Reveals Coffee Drinkers May Have Better Outcomes With Prostate Cancer

If you're a man who loves coffee, you may not only be helping yourself get through the day but also adding years to your life. According to a new study published in the journal European Urology Oncology, data suggests that there may be a connection between coffee drinking and longer prostate cancer-specific survival in men who have a specific genotype called CYP1A2 AA. The genotype, in this instance, refers to the genetic makeup of a specific gene, per the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Dr. Justin Gregg, lead study author and urologic oncologist at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, told HealthDay News that the results are exciting. This is because they indicate that coffee may have a positive impact only on prostate cancer and other aspects of people's health. However, Dr. Gregg acknowledged that the research is still in its early stages.

This isn't the first study to suggest that coffee might help reduce the risk of cancer. According to the American Cancer Society (ACS), other studies have shown that certain active compounds in coffee, such as flavonoids, caffeine, and polyphenols, possess anti-inflammatory properties. Coffee may also lower the risk of developing colorectal, breast, and liver cancer, among others.

Dr. William Dahut, chief scientific officer for the American Cancer Society, told HealthDay News that the study had some limitations and more information is needed. However, the results provide important clues about how science should proceed.

Prostate cancer symptoms and treatments

According to the Mayo Clinic, prostate cancer is a common type of cancer affecting the gland that produces the seminal fluid supporting the flow of sperm. Someone in the early stages of prostate cancer may be unaware because oftentimes, there are no clear signs. When the cancer is more advanced, symptoms tend to be more apparent and can include blood in the urine or semen, difficulty urinating, and erectile dysfunction.

The type of treatment you may receive for prostate cancer depends on various factors, including the stage of cancer, what side effects you are experiencing, your general health, and any side effects that could occur during treatment, per the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO).

Ideally, your doctor will catch your prostate cancer early during screening through a PSA (prostate-specific antigen) test. A spike in PSA could indicate the presence of cancer. However, your doctor may choose to repeat the test a few weeks later to determine if your PSA levels are truly elevated. Additionally, your doctor will gain a better understanding of whether the test results point to prostate cancer or a more benign condition, per the Prostate Cancer Foundation.

Because prostate cancer typically grows slowly, your doctor may initially advise active surveillance (rather than treatment) if caught early and you are low-risk. There is no cure for prostate cancer, but if you require treatment, there are many effective options such as hormonal therapies, chemotherapy, radiation, and surgery, per ASCO.