coffee consumptionSuch common condition as urinary incontinence in men (meaning unexpected release of urine)  is understood as a symptom of early urinary problems and is usually linked to prostate problems.  There are a few physical reasons which bring to such health condition, including excessive bladder squeezing, damage of weakening of urethra muscles, urethra blockage and overfilled bladder, overactive bladder, and so on. In medical science, there are a few types of urinary incontinence in men and women, mainly defined by causes of this ailment: functional incontinence, overflow incontinence, urge incontinence, stress related incontinence, and some others. According to the WebMD experts, urinary incontinence is becoming more and more common in modern men, caused mainly by bad habits like smoking or alcohol abuse, prostate problems, taking certain medications, stresses, a lack of sleep, and so on.

This week, some interesting findings of a study related to causes of urinary incontinence in men were published. According to the conclusions of a group of scientists at the University of Alabama at Birmingham who conducted the study, such factor as daily coffee consumption can play a role in developing the mentioned health condition. The researchers are convinced that those men who habitually drink two and more cups of coffee a day, or possibly take the equivalent dose of caffeine from any other natural caffeine source, have much higher risk of ‘leaky bladder’ compared to those men who drink just 1-2 cups of coffee a day, or those who do not consume this beverage at all. The report about this study appeared in one of the latest issues of The Journal of Urology, and the findings were reported by many world’s leading online or printed newspapers and other editions.

Possible connections between caffeine or coffee consumption and increased risk of urinary incontinence in men were established by previous studies, however, most of those studies were focused on researching the links only in women. Alabama University scientists collected information on about 5,000 American men aged 20 and above, gathered during the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) in 2005-2008. Complete data lists including the information about daily diet and food preferences, urinary incontinence in mendaily water intake, daily caffeine intake, and other relevant information, were available for slightly over 4,000 participants. Such information as Incontinence Severity Index scores, which could help the researchers make a proper assessment of urinary incontinence of every particular man, was also available for about 4,000 of the survey participants.

It turned out that those of the participants who reported consuming more than 250 mg of caffeine  coming from coffee or other natural sources of this substance (including green tea, other caffeinated drinks, etc.) on a daily basis, had up to 72 per cent higher chances to suffer from urinary system problems related to leaky bladder, compared to those man who consumed less caffeine or no caffeine at all in their daily diet. Those who were regularly exposed to the effects of over 250 mg caffeine indicated from moderate to severe ISI scores, showing the signs of clear urinary incontinence. According to Alayne D. Markland, one of the leaders of the research and a professor at the University of Alabama, no other factors like smoking or daily fluid consumption played as significant role as caffeine or coffee consumption in causing urinary incontinence in men.

Caffeine consumption equivalent to approximately 2 cups of coffee per day (250mg) is significantly associated with moderate-severe UI in US men,” it is stated in the report. At that, the scientists underline that those men who reported caffeine consumption exceeding 392 mg a day had as much as twice higher risk for leaky bladder related problems, compared to non-caffeine consumers. Alabama University researchers are planning to continue their studies of the issue in order to discover the nature and mechanisms of the established connections between daily coffee consumption and urinary incontinence in men. But for now, they recommend all those men who suffer from this health problem to start controlling their daily caffeine consumption or simply avoid consuming foods or beverages with caffeine. You can find detailed information about the study and the findings in this report.


Author Info: Hi! My name is Carla and I am a 5th year medical student at HYMS. I am interested in alternative medicine and I have done months researching the topic of herbal medicine. Besides, I like interviewing people and learning more about their experiences with one or another type of herbal treatments. I am willing to contribute to this site with my knowledge, and I would be happy to help you out to the best of my ability with any specific questions or problems related to alternative medicine.

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