As long as news keeps cranking coffee benefit stories, we’ll keep commenting on them

CAFFEINE LINKED TO LOWER SKIN CANCER RISK – ABC NEWS

CAFFEINE IN COFFEE MAY HELP LOWER RISK OF SKIN CANCER – Fox News

Addendum on July 4: 

Good news, java junkies: Researchers have found the more coffee you drink, the more you may be protecting yourself against skin cancer. – CNN.com

None of these stories mentioned anything about:

  • this was an observational study
  • it showed a statistical association – not cause-and-effect

And the Fox and CNN stories didn’t have any independent perspective – only the researcher/author touting the study’s importance.

 

But the sun shines on HealthDay today because it included this simple and effective reminder:

“While the study uncovered an association between greater caffeine consumption and reduced risk of basal cell cancer, it did not prove a cause-and-effect relationship.”

As always, we remind journalists and news consumers of our primer: Does The Language Fit The Evidence? – Association Versus Causation

Here are just some of our past blog posts about news coverage of supposed health benefits of coffee:

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