Caffeine helps cut brain cancer risk

Last Updated: Sep 30, 2010, 00:00 AM IST

London: A daily cup of tea or coffee can protect you from brain cancer, a study has found.

People who drink one cup of either hot drink can slash the risk of the disease by a third, reports express.co.uk.

Scientists believe caffeine may restrict blood flow to the brain and stop the growth of tumours. Also some believe it is thought antioxidants in tea and coffee that may protect the brain against cancer cells.

Around 4,200 people are diagnosed with a brain tumour each year and about half of them are cases of gliomas- a type of cancer that can be very difficult to treat.

Symptoms range from headaches and seizures to blurred vision, drowsiness and even changes in personality, memory or mental ability.

As a part of the story, researchers studied 500,000 men and women over eight years.

The team compared cancer rates among frequent coffee and tea drinkers to volunteers who consumed little or no caffeinated hot drinks.

A daily cup of either drink reduced the risk by an average of 34 percent.

"These findings are of interest as glioma is the most common type of primary brain tumour and the results from this study were obtained from a very large study population," said Euan Paul, executive director of the British coffee association.

"Other studies recently published have also demonstrated that moderate coffee consumption does not increase the risk of cancer in the breast, kidney, bladder, skin or colon," he added.

IANS