Good Morning and Good News
It is a beautiful day in Pretty Marsh, Maine. Actually, to be more accurate, is is 6:30 in the morning, and the fog is hanging over the water. On the land side, the verdant forest is clearly visible, so I expect that the fog will soon lift. A blue heron is standing very still, sometimes on one leg, about twenty feet away from me. While I poured my coffee, there were two humming birds at the feeder. My dog, Daisy, is asleep at my feet, my husband is on the early morning flight from Boston, and all is well with my world. This sense of peaceful well-being is complemented by this article suggesting that coffee might actually be good for us. Read that again: not only does it look as though coffee is not associated with breast cancer or other cancers, it may even reduce risk. I drink only a cup and a little each morning, but my daily beginnings would definitely be less pleasurable without the smells and tastes and rituals. I often think that it is the ritual of making the coffee which is a big part of the enjoyment. We each have our favorite methods; we rely on a French Press, so there are steps: fill the tea kettle, boil the water, measure the coffee into the pot, add the boiling water and then wait a few minutes before pressing the plunger. The pressing the plunger part is the daily wild card as sometimes it is easy and other times I practically have to stand on it to make it budge. Today was smooth.
Coffee intake and breast cancer risk in the NIH-AARP Diet and Health
Study cohort Gretchen L. Gierach 1, Neal D. Freedman 2, Abegail Andaya 1, Albert R. Hollenbeck 3, Yikyung Park 2, Arthur Schatzkin 2 and Louise A. Brinton 1
1 Hormonal and Reproductive Epidemiology Branch, Division of Cancer Epidemiology and Genetics, National Cancer Institute, National Institutes of Health, 6120 Executive Blvd., Suite 550, Rockville, MD
2 Nutritional Epidemiology Branch, Division of Cancer Epidemiology and Genetics, National Cancer Institute, National Institutes of Health, 6120 Executive Blvd., Suite 320, Rockville, MD
3 Organizational and Tracking Research Department, AARP, 601 E St. NW, Washington, DC
There are several biologic mechanisms whereby coffee might reduce breast cancer risk. Caffeine and caffeic acid, major coffee constituents, have been shown to suppress mammary tumor formation in animal models and to inhibit DNA methylation in human breast cancer cells,respectively. Coffee may also reduce risk through decreasing inflammation and influencing estrogen metabolism. However, epidemiologic studies have been inconsistent and few studies have examined the association by estrogen and progesterone receptor (ER/PR) status. We evaluated coffee intake for its effect on incident breast cancer in the National Institutes of Health-AARP Diet and Health Study cohort, which included 198,404 women aged 50-71 with no history of cancer, who in 1995-1996 completed a questionnaire capturing usual coffee intake over the past year. State cancer registry and mortality index linkage identified 9,915 primary incident breast carcinomas through December 2006; available information on hormone receptor (HR) status identified 2,051 ER1/PR1 and 453 ER2/PR2 cancers. In multivariable proportional hazards models, coffee intake was not associated with breast cancer risk (p-value for trend 5 0.38; relative risk 5 0.98, 95% confidence interval: 0.91-1.07, for four or more cups per day as compared to women who never drank coffee), and results did not vary by body mass index or history of benign breast biopsy (p-value for interaction > 0.10). We found no evidence of a relationship with either caffeinated or decaffeinated coffee. Null findings persisted for risk of both HR-positive and -negative breast cancers. These findings from a large prospective cohort do not support a role of coffee intake in breast carcinogenesis.