The WHO flip-flops on coffee

I kid. I’m glad they’re following the evidence:

An influential panel of experts convened by the World Health Organization concluded on Wednesday that regularly drinking coffee could help protect against some types of cancer, a decision that followed decades of research pointing to the beverage’s many health benefits.

Of course, this follows years of saying the opposite:

The announcement marked a rare reversal for the panel, which had previously described coffee as “possibly carcinogenic” in 1991 and linked it to bladder cancer. But since then a large body of research has portrayed coffee as a surprising elixir, finding lower rates of heart disease, Type 2 diabetes, neurological disorders and several cancers in those who drink it regularly.

Let this also serve as your daily reminder that of the 985 substances the WHO has weighed on for possible carcinogenicity, only ONE has been found by them “Probably not carcinogenic to humans“. I imagine that may now be two, although it sure took long enough.

For the record, here’s my Upshot column on coffee from a year ago. Here’s the Healthcare Triage video if you prefer watching to reading:


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