A recent study explored a possibility that coffee can do more than waking you up in the morning, it may help reduce the risk of developing multiple sclerosis.
Study author Ellen Mowry, MD, at Johns Hopkins University said that caffeine intake has been associated with a reduced risk of Parkinson's and Alzheimer's diseases, and their study shows that coffee intake may also protect against MS, supporting the idea that the drug may have protective effects for the brain.
For the study, researchers looked at a Swedish study of 1,629 people with MS and 2,807 healthy people, and a U.S. study of 1,159 people with MS and 1,172 healthy people.
The studies characterized coffee consumption among persons with MS one and five years before MS symptoms began (as well as 10 years before MS symptoms began in the Swedish study) and compared it to coffee consumption of people who did not have MS at similar time periods. The study also accounted for other factors such as age, sex, smoking, body mass index, and sun exposure habits.
The Swedish study found that compared to people who drank at least six cups of coffee per day during the year before symptoms appeared, those who did not drink coffee had about a one and a half times increased risk of developing MS. Drinking large amounts of coffee five or 10 years before symptoms started was similarly protective.
The study released will be presented at the American Academy of Neurology's 67th Annual Meeting.