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How Your Local Coffee Shop Could be the Newest Health Store

According to new research from Japan, drinking coffee may lower the risk of certain cancers in the mouth and throat. The findings were part of a large scale Japanese population analysis called the Miyagi Cohort Study.

The results are published in the December 15, 2008 iss of the American Journal of Epidemiology.

The study included 38,679 participants aged 40-64 years old with no previous history of cancer. In 1990, they filled out food frequency questionnaires which the researchers used to identify coffee consumption.

During the 13 years of follow up, 157 cases of oral, throat and esophageal cancers were identified.

After adjusting for outside risk factors like alcohol consumption and smoking, researchers found that participants who drank one or more cup(s) of coffee per day had half the risk of developing mouth, throat and esophageal cancers than those who did not drink coffee.

The researchers, from Tohoku University, also noted that drinking coffee was associated with a reduction in oral cancer risk among even the most high risk groups in the study.

In addition to these apparent anti-cancer properties, recent research has shown coffee may have a variety of other health benefits.

In recent years approximately 19,000 studies have examined coffee's impact on health. For the most part, the results have been very positive.

Coffee has been shown to reduce the risk of diabetes, cirrhosis and oral cavities. And at least six different studies have shown that people who drink coffee regularly are up to 80% less likely to develop Parkinson's.

A cup of Java may even play a role in treating asthma and reducing the frequency and severity of headaches.

Perhaps the best part of waking up really is coffee in your cup.
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