Coffee consumption is associated with protection from several chronic diseases, including cancer, cardiovascular disease, and neurodegenerative disease. Some of the beneficial effects of coffee may stem from its ability to induce autophagy. In a study in which fasting mice were provided either caffeinated or decaffeinated coffee in drinking water, autophagy was observed in the liver, muscle, and heart just four hours after consumption. In this clip, Dr. Guido Kroemer discusses the autophagy-inducing qualities of coffee.
An intracellular degradation system involved in the disassembly and recycling of unnecessary or dysfunctional cellular components. Autophagy participates in cell death, a process known as autophagic dell death. Prolonged fasting is a robust initiator of autophagy and may help protect against cancer and even aging by reducing the burden of abnormal cells.
The relationship between autophagy and cancer is complex, however. Autophagy may prevent the survival of pre-malignant cells, but can also be hijacked as a malignant adaptation by cancer, providing a useful means to scavenge resources needed for further growth.
A large class of diseases that involve the heart or blood vessels, including stroke, hypertension, thrombosis, heart failure, atherosclerosis, and more. Cardiovascular disease is often caused by lifestyle factors. As such, up to 90 percent of cardiovascular disease may be preventable.
A broad range of disorders caused by the progressive death of neurons in the central and peripheral nervous systems. Common neurodegenerative diseases include Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, Huntington’s disease, and multiple sclerosis. Although treatments are available for some neurodegenerative diseases, there are currently no cures.
A class of chemical compounds produced in plants in response to stressors. Polyphenols contribute to the bitterness, astringency, color, flavor, and fragrance of many fruits and vegetables. They often serve as deterrents to insect or herbivore consumption. When consumed in the human diet, polyphenols exert many health benefits and may offer protection against development of cancers, cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, osteoporosis, and neurodegenerative diseases. Dietary sources of polyphenols include grapes, apples, pears, cherries, and berries, which provide as much as 200 to 300 mg polyphenols per 100 grams fresh weight.
A study in which people are randomly allocated to receive one of several clinical interventions. One of these interventions is the standard of comparison or control. The control may be a standard practice, a placebo, or no intervention at all.
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