Chronic liver disease (CLD) is a growing cause of morbidity and mortality worldwide, particularly in low to middle-income countries with high disease burden and limited treatment availability. Coffee consumption has been linked with lower rates of CLD, but little is known about the effects of different coffee types, which vary in chemical composition. This study aimed to investigate associations of coffee consumption, including decaffeinated, instant and ground coffee, with chronic liver disease outcomes.
A total of 494,585 UK Biobank participants with known coffee consumption and electronic linkage to hospital, death and cancer records were included in this study. Cox regression was used to estimate hazard ratios (HR) of incident CLD, incident CLD or steatosis, incident hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) and death from CLD according to coffee consumption of any type as well as for decaffeinated, instant and ground coffee individually.
Among 384,818 coffee drinkers and 109,767 non-coffee drinkers, there were 3600 cases of CLD, 5439 cases of CLD or steatosis, 184 cases of HCC and 301 deaths from CLD during a median follow-up of 10.7 years. Compared to non-coffee drinkers, coffee drinkers had lower adjusted HRs of CLD (HR 0.79, 95% CI 0.72–0.86), CLD or steatosis (HR 0.80, 95% CI 0.75–0.86), death from CLD (HR 0.51, 95% CI 0.39–0.67) and HCC (HR 0.80, 95% CI 0.54–1.19). The associations for decaffeinated, instant and ground coffee individually were similar to all types combined.
The finding that all types of coffee are protective against CLD is significant given the increasing incidence of CLD worldwide and the potential of coffee as an intervention to prevent CLD onset or progression.