Go Ad-Free
logoThe People's Perspective on Medicine

Men Who Drink Coffee Reduce Risk of Prostate Cancer Recurrence

Men who drink coffee and metabolize caffeine quickly have better outcomes with prostate cancer. Three or four cups daily help.

Men who drink coffee may be helping protect their prostate glands. About a decade ago, researchers discovered that heavy coffee drinkers were less likely to suffer recurrent prostate cancer. More on that below. Recently, a study suggested that coffee drinkers with prostate cancer survive longer (European Urology Oncology, Sept. 27, 2022). The scientists utilized a database with over 5,700 prostate cancer patients in Australia, Europe and the US. The investigators had collected genetic information on these men as well as medical details about their prostate cancer.

Rapid Metabolizers Got the Benefit:

Men with localized disease rather than advanced disease benefited most from drinking coffee. In addition, men who metabolize caffeine improved their survival times significantly by drinking more coffee. Drinking coffee did not help men not carrying the CYP1A2 AA genotype that controls caffeine metabolism. On the other hand, it did not seem to harm them, either.

Men Who Drink Coffee Are Less Prone to Recurrence:

As we mentioned, earlier research suggests that coffee drinkers are less likely to experience a recurrence of prostate cancer (Cancer Causes & Control, online, Aug. 2, 2013). Researchers at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle tracked about 1,000 men who were diagnosed and treated for prostate cancer. This epidemiological study surveyed the men about their use of medications, family history and lifestyle. They answered questions at the time of their prostate cancer diagnosis about their food and beverage intake and again five years later.

Over 60 percent of the men drank at least one cup of coffee daily prior to diagnosis. Beyond that, 12 percent consumed four or more cups a day. These heavy coffee drinkers were 59 percent less likely to experience a recurrence or progression of their cancer compared to men who only drank one or fewer cups of coffee per week. The results are consistent with prior epidemiological research suggesting that there is something in coffee that may interfere with the spread of cancer cells. The recent research on prostate cancer survival seems to confirm that hypothesis.

Learn More:

Prostate cancer can be confusing. We offer an interview we did with Aaron Katz, MD, author of The Definitive Guide to Prostate Cancer: Everything You Need to Know about Conventional and Integrative Therapies. The diagnosis of prostate cancer is also quite controversial; we discussed the problem of overdiagnosisof this disease with Gilbert Welch, MD, MPH, author of Overdiagnosed: Making People Sick in the Pursuit of Health ( with Dr. Lisa Schwartz and Dr. Steven Woloshin).

Rate this article
4.8- 10 ratings
About the Author
Terry Graedon, PhD, is a medical anthropologist and co-host of The People’s Pharmacy radio show, co-author of The People’s Pharmacy syndicated newspaper columns and numerous books, and co-founder of The People’s Pharmacy website. Terry taught in the Duke University School of Nursing and was an adjunct assistant professor in the Department of Anthropology. She is a Fellow of the Society of Applied Anthropology. Terry is one of the country's leading authorities on the science behind folk remedies..
Tired of the ads on our website?

Now you can browse our website completely ad-free for just $5 / month. Stay up to date on breaking health news and support our work without the distraction of advertisements.

Browse our website ad-free
  • Gregg JR et al, "Coffee intake, caffeine metabolism genotype, and survival among men with prostate cancer." European Urology Oncology, Sept. 27, 2022. DOI: 10.1016/j.euo.2022.07.008
  • Geybels MS et al, "Coffee and tea consumption in relation to prostate cancer prognosis." Cancer Causes & Control, online, Aug. 2, 2013.
Join over 150,000 Subscribers at The People's Pharmacy

We're empowering you to make wise decisions about your own health, by providing you with essential health information about both medical and alternative treatment options.