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6 Double-Duty Beauty Foods (Page 5)

Coffee

4. Coffee

Beauty benefit: Protects against skin cancer
Drinking a single cup of coffee daily may lower your risk of developing skin cancer. In one study of more than 93,000 women, published in the European Journal of Cancer Prevention, those who drank 1 cup of caffeinated coffee a day reduced their risk of developing nonmelanoma skin cancer by about 10 percent. And the more they drank—up to about 6 cups or so per day—the lower their risk. Decaf didn’t seem to offer the same protection.

Health benefit: Brain gains
Moderate coffee drinking—between 1 and 5 cups daily—may help reduce risk of dementia and Alzheimer’s disease, as well as Parkinson’s disease, studies suggest. How? Coffee’s antioxidants may prevent some damage to brain cells and boost the effects of neurotransmitters involved in cognitive function, say experts. Preliminary studies have noted that as coffee (or tea) intake rises, incidence of glioma, a form of brain cancer, tends to drop. Some researchers speculate that compounds in the brews could activate a DNA-repairing protein in cells—possibly preventing the DNA damage that can lead to cells becoming cancerous. (Read about more health benefits of coffee, plus cons to consider here.)

Must-Have: Easy Coffee Recipes

Next: 5. Tofu »


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