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The science behind cancer warnings on coffee is murky at best

Experts say there is ‘no firm evidence’ that drinking coffee comes with a carcinogenic risk

By
5:23pm, March 30, 2018
cup of coffee

COFFEE BREAK  Drinking coffee has a number of health benefits that may outweigh its uncertain cancer risks, studies have shown.

Californians will soon be taking their coffee with cream and a cancer warning, after a court ruled that the state’s retailers must label coffee as containing a carcinogen. The decision followed an eight-year legal battle, which boiled down to a question that has plagued coffee drinkers and scientists alike: Is drinking coffee healthy, or not?

The judge’s ruling, issued Wednesday, says that Starbucks and other coffee sellers failed to show that the health benefits of the brew, which include lowering heart disease, outweigh its cancer risk. But do the new warnings mean you should put your mug down? Here’s what we know — and don’t know — about coffee’s health effects, both good and bad.

What’s in coffee that has raised cancer concerns?

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