Feeds

Drinking too much coffee can MAKE YOU BLIND

Study not iron-clad, but ask yourself, 'Do you feel lucky?'

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Security for virtualized datacentres

According to a new study, drinking more than three cups of coffee per day has been shown to correlate with an increased risk of developing glaucoma, which can lead to vision loss or blindness.

"While caffeinated coffee has several health benefits," lead researcher Jae Hee Kang told Health magazine, "drinking three or more cups of caffeinated coffee was found to be associated with increased risk of developing exfoliation glaucoma, particularly among those with a family history of glaucoma."

While coffee has for some time been known to be problematic for glaucoma sufferers due to the fact that it can increase pressure within the eyeball, Kang asserts that the hot brown drug can be linked to a specific type of the vision-destroying malady: exfoliation glaucoma. This syndrome occurs when material is rubbed off both the eye's iris and lens, which then clogs up the eyeball's fluid-draining system, leading to heightened inter-ocular pressure (IOP), which increases the risk of glaucoma.

Kang and her team's study, published in Investigative Ophthalmology & Visual Science, surveyed data from two studies, one with 78,977 women and another with 41,202 men. Its findings are not conclusive in a cause-and-effect sense, however – correlation is not causation, as we all know from our college classes – and the statistical significance of her findings is weak.

That said, her team did discover that those subjects who drank three or more cups of caffeinated coffee per day did have a higher incidence of exfoliation glaucoma than those who either abstained or were more moderate in their intake of a cup of joe – or three.

Despite the less than iron-clad results, the study concludes that "We observed a positive association between heavier coffee consumption with risk of [exfoliation glaucoma or exfoliation glaucoma suspect] in this large prospective study."

One medical professional is unconvinced. Referring to the studies from which Kang and her coauthors obtained the data, ophthalmology professor Alfred Sommer of Johns Hopkins University told Health, "These two studies have yielded literally thousands of articles, almost all of little value."

According to Sommer, the studies are missing the information researchers need to take into account the many variables that might influence conclusions to be drawn from them.

"To make matters worse," he added, "the conclusions in [Kang's] study don't even reach statistical significance."

Sommer's argument is a strong one – if you're looking for certainty. If, however, you've got a family history of glaucoma and you're not particularly lucky in life, you might think of making that third latte a decaf. ®

Security for virtualized datacentres

More from The Register

next story
Boffins who stare at goats: I do believe they’re SHRINKING
Alpine chamois being squashed by global warming
What's that STINK? Rosetta probe shoves nose under comet's tail
Rotten eggs, horse dung and almonds – yuck
Comet Siding Spring revealed as flying molehill
Hiding from this space pimple isn't going to do humanity's reputation any good
Kip Thorne explains how he created the black hole for Interstellar
Movie special effects project spawns academic papers on gravitational lensing
Experts brand LOHAN's squeaky-clean box
Phytosanitary treatment renders Vulture 2 crate fit for export
LONG ARM of the SAUR: Brachially gifted dino bone conundrum solved
Deinocheirus mirificus was a bit of a knuckle dragger
Moment of truth for LOHAN's servos: Our US allies are poised for final test flight
Will Vulture 2 freeze at altitude? Edge Research Lab to find out
prev story

Whitepapers

Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
New hybrid storage solutions
Tackling data challenges through emerging hybrid storage solutions that enable optimum database performance whilst managing costs and increasingly large data stores.