According to the recent Harvard Nurses' Health study, women who drink four cups of coffee per day run a lower risk of developing gallstones than those who do not drink coffee. Previous studies on men have shown similar results.
Women are twice as likely to be affected with gallstones than men, and those women who are overweight or have experienced rapid weight loss ran a higher risk.
80,900 women were tracked over a period of two decades to compare their coffee consumption to whether they had their gall bladder removed. Researchers found 7,815 women had their gallbladders removed. The study also suggested that coffeee drinkers had a 25% lesser chance of gallstones than non-drinkers.
Dr. Leitzman, an investigator at the National Cancer Institute suggested that caffeine might be the protective ingredient in reducing risk of gallstones. He added that previous studies have proven that caffeine leads to gallbladder contractions that could theoretically help prevent the formation of gallstones.