A new study says drinking regular cups of coffee may reduce the risk of alcohol-related liver cirrhosis by up to 44 percent.
Researchers recommend heavy drinkers to consume around two or three cups of coffee each day in order to help prevent the onset of liver cirrhosis.
This advice is grounded in the 'harm reduction' school of addiction treatment.
At Rehab 4 Addiction, we do not advocate 'harm reduction'.
Instead, we advocate total abstinence.
This research was conducted by scientists at the University of Southampton.
The scientists reviewed nine research papers. These papers consisted of studies conducted on around half a million people across six countries.
Scientists believe they've identified a causal link between drinking two or more cups of coffee per day and a reduction in the occurrence of alcohol-induced liver cirrhosis.
What is liver cirrhosis?
Liver cirrhosis is 'scaring' of the liver caused by long-term alcohol abuse.
Cirrhosis of the liver is also caused by infectious hepatitis C.
Scientists are unsure of the exact metabolic pathways that lead to liver cirrhosis, although there is a proven link between chronic alcohol abuse and this deadly condition.
Liver cirrhosis is typically fatal and irreversible.
The symptoms of liver cirrhosis
Symptoms of the condition include jaundice/yellowing of the eyes and skin, easy bruising, fatigue and bleeding from the nose and gums.
Many sufferers die from this deadly condition.
A quick fix or a legitimate weapon against alcohol-related liver disease?
The researchers praised the effects of coffee for its ability to reduce the risk of liver cirrhosis.
The researchers point out that coffee is a non-synthetic substance and one that's well tolerated by the body.
However, scientists currently cannot explain precisely why coffee reduces the risk of alcohol-related liver cirrhosis.
The report said: 'Animal studies and human observational studies suggest that coffee consumption reduces the frequency of abnormal liver function tests, fibrosis, cirrhosis and HCC.
'In addition, a randomised controlled trial showed that patients with hepatitis C who drank more coffee had lower serum levels of liver enzymes.
'The aim of this meta-analysis was to summarise the evidence from studies on the effect of coffee on cirrhosis.'
Given almost one million people perish each year due to alcoholism, we feel advocating coffee as a 'fix' for alcoholism really does take the concept of 'harm reduction' to the extreme.
Rehab 4 Addiction offers free advice on drug and alcohol rehabilitation services.