Coffee-lovers rejoice (after you’ve had your first cup today, that is): The latest in java research has found that drinking coffee may actually lower the risk of developing melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer.
Research has shown before that coffee has a handful of health benefits, among them, possibly reducing depression risk, actually helping women thrive under stress, and even reducing the risk of basal cell carcinoma, the most common form of skin cancer. But this is the first time it’s been shown to help protect us from melanoma, CBS News pointed out.
In the study, published in JCNI: Journal of the National Cancer Institute, 447,357 non-Hispanic whites (the most prone to melanoma) who were cancer-free took a questionnaire on food and coffee intake. After following up with all of them about 10 years later, they found that the highest level of coffee intake was inversely associated with malignant melanoma — meaning that the more coffee people consumed, the smaller their risk was of developing this dangerous skin cancer. The magic numbers: four cups daily for a 20% lower risk.
The association was significant for caffeinated coffee, but not decaffeinated. That begs the question: Do the compounds in coffee protect our skin, the caffeine specifically, or do the two become a force to reckon with when paired together? More studies will have to be done to determine this. But until then, we’ll take this as permission to avoid exercising any self-control around the office Keurig machine.
Coffee vs. Tea: Which Is Healthier?
8 Ways to Use Coffee As a Beauty Product