Friday August 17, 2018

Espedilla: Can coffee cause cancer? (part 3)

(Foreword: this is our continuation of our reply to Benjie of Catalunan Pequeno regarding his anxiety over some bad news about coffee.)

Dear Benjie of Catalunan Pequeno,

Coffee does not have all its perks. It may have some risk for pregnant women, especially when there is too much consumption. So, the take home message is: drink coffee moderately. It would make the experience remarkably safe, and it can be incorporated as part of one’s healthy diet.

The best choice is really water, guys. Look, this is essential for your body. This will not only prevent dehydration, constipation, and kidney stones. Moreover, it doesn’t have any calories, making it the best drink for your waistline. Now, if you add one to three cups of water a day to your diet, you could end up taking in less fat, salt, sugar, and you could even cut up to 200 fewer calories a day. But, if you think that water is too plain for your taste buds, you can always add a squeeze of citrus, or some of your favorite herbs, like mint.

In a study, it was noted that there was a rise of lung cancer among coffee drinkers. But, some studies did not account the smoking habits of the participants. Moreover, there was no higher risk in non-smokers. Moreover, there was also a higher risk of low birth weight and pregnancy loss among heavy coffee drinkers. They were also the ones who were also more likely to give birth prematurely.

But, there are studies which gave thumbs up for coffee’s potential positives. There’s data that show that there’s a 20% to 30% reduction in risk of type 2 diabetes if you drink three cups of coffee a day. In a study last August 2017, it showed that two to four cups lowered the chance of dying prematurely by 18%. They were also less likely to die from heart disease, cancer, diabetes, kidney disease, and chronic lower respiratory disease.

The thing is, studies can only show associations; they can’t find cause and effect. In other words, studies may show that fewer coffee drinkers get certain cancers. But these studies can’t say for sure, that it’s the coffee itself that protects against cancer.

We are losing again space for now, let me then, and continue this in my next issue. Until then again!

Dr. Fritz

(Dr. Fritz Legarde Espedilla is an aesthetic dermatologist and surgeon and a clinical sexologist. She is also trained in hypnotherapy and Medical Acupuncture. She has been in the broadcast media for more than a decade and has written a book based on her 15 year stint with her radio program, “Healthy is Sexy Secrets ni Dr. Fritz.” She is also a faculty in a College of Pharmacy. For your questions, you may send them to Dear Dr. Fritz, c/o Sunstar-Davao Publishing Inc., Ebro-Pelayo Building, Jacinto St., Davao City, (former Department of Foreign Affairs office), across Ateneo de Davao University and beside Holy Child School of Davao, or you e-mail them to If you don’t wish your letter to be published, we regret that we cannot answer them. Thank you for your understanding.)