A new study says drinking two or more cups of coffee a day may have significant health benefits.

Monash University gastroenterologist and liver disease specialist Dr Alex Hodge says the results of his latest study shows that “coffee intake has a positive effect on a number of diseases, and in particular, liver diseases”.

“We collected data from over 1100 liver clinic patients at Monash Medical Centre over 18 months and found that drinking coffee reduced liver stiffness [a measurement of liver disease] in patients with hepatitis C, hepatitis B and fatty liver,” said Dr Hodge.

“These findings were noted even when confounding factors such as weight, alcohol and smoking habits were taken into account.”

Dr Hodge’s study did not find the same results when he analysed liver patients’ consumption of tea.

“The most striking results were found in patients with hepatitis C,” added Dr Hodge.

“Two or more cups of coffee led to an improvement in their liver disease.”

The research adds to the growing body of evidence of the health benefits of coffee, in particular for those with liver diseases including the most common liver disease, fatty liver.

Dr Hodge presented his findings at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases (AASLD).