Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

More good news for coffee lovers

Cuppa joe found to reduce physical pain

  • Print

LOS ANGELES -- Scientists in Norway have more good news for coffee drinkers. Researchers have already found evidence the drink -- or the beans it's brewed from -- can help with weight loss, reduce one's risk of developing Alzheimer's disease or dementia, boost muscle growth, protect against certain types of cancers and can even reduce one's risk of premature death, among many other benefits.

Now comes word that a cuppa joe reduces physical pain.

The surprising finding is based on a study involving 48 volunteers who agreed to spend 90 minutes performing fake computer tasks meant to mimic office work.

The tasks were known to cause pain in the shoulders, neck, forearms and wrists, and the researchers wanted to compare how people with chronic pain and those who were pain-free tolerated the tasks.

As a matter of convenience, the scientists allowed people to drink coffee before taking the test "to avoid unpleasant effects of caffeine deprivation, e.g. decreased vigour and alertness, sleepiness and fatigue," they reported.

But when it came time to analyze the data, the researchers from Norway's National Institute of Occupational Health and Oslo University Hospital noticed the 19 people who drank coffee reported a lower intensity of pain than the 29 people who didn't.

In the shoulders and neck, for instance, the average pain intensity was rated 41 (on a 100-point scale) among the coffee drinkers and 55 for the coffee abstainers. Similar gaps were found for all pain sites measured, and coffee's apparent pain-mitigation effect held up regardless of whether the subjects had chronic pain or not.

The authors of the study, which was published this week in the journal BMC Research Notes, cautioned that since the study wasn't designed to test coffee's influence on pain, the results come with many uncertainties.

For starters, the researchers don't know how much coffee the coffee drinkers consumed before taking the computer tests. They also doubt the coffee drinkers and abstainers were similar in all respects except for their java consumption. Problems like these tend to undermine the importance of the findings.

But those reservations are unlikely to trouble the legions of coffee drinkers looking for any reason not to cut back on their daily caffeine habit.

 

-- Los Angeles Times

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition October 13, 2012 A17

Fact Check

Fact Check

Have you found an error, or know of something we’ve missed in one of our stories?
Please use the form below and let us know.

* Required
  • Please post the headline of the story or the title of the video with the error.

  • Please post exactly what was wrong with the story.

  • Please indicate your source for the correct information.

  • Yes

    No

  • This will only be used to contact you if we have a question about your submission, it will not be used to identify you or be published.

  • Cancel

Having problems with the form?

Contact Us Directly
  • Print

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

Have Your Say

New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscribers only. why?

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press Subscribers only. why?

The Winnipeg Free Press does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. These terms were revised effective April 16, 2010.

letters

Make text: Larger | Smaller

LATEST VIDEO

Soca and Reggae Festival and Weekend Weather

View more like this

Photo Store Gallery

  • June 25, 2013 - 130625  -  A storm lit up Winnipeg Tuesday, June 25, 2013. John Woods / Winnipeg Free Press - lightning
  • A black swallowtail butterfly land on Lantana flowers Sunday morning at the Assiniboine Park English Gardens- standup photo – August 14, 2011   (JOE BRYKSA / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS)

View More Gallery Photos

Poll

Will you miss Grandma Elm?

View Results

View Related Story

Ads by Google