Friday June 21, 2019

Drinking Coffee Improves Bowel Movement, Find Researchers

Decaffeinated coffee had a similar effect on the microbiome

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Starbucks coffee
Starbucks coffee. Pixabay

Drinking coffee keeps the bowels moving because it changes gut bacteria and improves ability of intestines to contract, find researchers.

Researchers, feeding rats coffee and also mixing it with gut bacteria in petri dishes, found that coffee suppressed bacteria and increased muscle motility, regardless of caffeine content.

“When rats were treated with coffee for three days, the ability of the muscles in the small intestine to contract appeared to increase,” said Xuan-Zheng Shi, associate professor in internal medicine at the University of Texas Medical Branch, Galveston.

Interestingly, these effects are caffeine-independent, because caffeine-free coffee had similar effects as regular coffee, Shi informed during the Digestive Disease Week (DDW) 2019 here on Sunday.

Coffee has long been known to increase bowel movement, but researchers have not pinpointed the specific reason or mechanism.

A barista pours steamed milk into a cup of coffee at a cafe in Los Angeles, Sept. 22, 2017. State health officials proposed a regulation change Friday that would declare coffee doesn't present a significant cancer risk, countering a California court ruling.
A barista pours steamed milk into a cup of coffee at a cafe in Los Angeles, Sept. 22, 2017. VOA

The study found that growth of bacteria and other microbes in fecal matter in a petri dish was suppressed with a solution of 1.5 per cent coffee, and growth of microbes was even lower with a 3 per cent solution of coffee.

Decaffeinated coffee had a similar effect on the microbiome.

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Muscles in the lower intestines and colons of the rats showed increased ability to contract after a period of coffee ingestion, and coffee stimulated contractions of the small intestine and colon when muscle tissues were exposed to coffee directly in the lab.

The results support the need for additional clinical research to determine whether coffee drinking might be an effective treatment for post-operative constipation, or ileus, in which the intestines quit working after abdominal surgery, the authors noted. (IANS)

Next Story

Coffee Does Not Pose ‘Significant’ Cancer Risk, Says California

It was the first time the state has declared such a brew of chemicals safe despite the presence of carcinogens

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A patron holds an iced beverage at a Starbucks coffee store in Pasadena, Calif., July 25, 2013. VOA

California officially gave its blessing to coffee Monday, declaring the beverage does not pose a “significant” cancer risk. The rule, proposed a year ago by regulators, means coffee won’t have to carry ominous warnings that the beverage may be bad for you.

The state took the rare move after a Los Angeles judge found Starbucks Corp. and other companies failed to show that benefits from drinking coffee outweighed risks from a byproduct of the roasting process.

That ruling put the industry in jeopardy of hefty civil penalties and in the position of either developing a process to remove the chemical or warning consumers about the risk of cancer. The chemical in question, acrylamide, is on a list that California says causes cancer, though other groups classify it as a “probable” carcinogen.

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“With this news, coffee drinkers around the world can wake up and enjoy the smell and taste of their coffee without hesitation.” Pixabay

Under a law passed more than three decades ago by California voters, products that contain chemicals that cause cancer or birth defects must warn consumers about those risks.

The Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment, which implements the law, concluded there was no significant risk after a World Health Organization review of more than 1,000 studies and found inadequate evidence that coffee causes cancer. Further, it concluded coffee reduces the risk of some types of cancer.

“Coffee is a complex mixture of hundreds of chemicals that includes both carcinogens and anti-carcinogens,” said Sam Delson, a spokesman for the agency. “The overall effect of coffee consumption is not associated with any significant cancer risk.”

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It was the first time the state has declared such a brew of chemicals safe despite the presence of carcinogens, Delson said. Pixabay

It was the first time the state has declared such a brew of chemicals safe despite the presence of carcinogens, Delson said. The coffee industry cheered the rule. “This is a great day for science and coffee lovers,” said William Murray, president and chief executive of the National Coffee Association USA. “With this news, coffee drinkers around the world can wake up and enjoy the smell and taste of their coffee without hesitation.”

ALSO READ: Drinking Even 25 Cups of Coffee in a Day Not Bad for Heart, Says Study

The Council for Education and Research on Toxics, which successfully sued the coffee industry in a case that has dragged on more than eight years in Los Angeles Superior Court, will challenge the validity of the state’s regulation in court, said attorney Raphael Metzger.

Metzger, who represents the small nonprofit in its lawsuit against Starbucks and about 90 coffee companies, said the regulation was adopted in violation of state law and disregards the statutes the agency is supposed to implement. He said the regulation can’t be applied retroactively to nullify the judge’s ruling. (VOA)