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Open Access Highly Accessed Research article

Effects of coffee, smoking, and alcohol on liver function tests: a comprehensive cross-sectional study

Eun Sun Jang1, Sook-Hyang Jeong1*, Sung Ho Hwang1, Hyun Young Kim2, So Yeon Ahn3, Jaebong Lee3, Sang Hyub Lee1, Young Soo Park1, Jin Hyeok Hwang1, Jin-Wook Kim1, Nayoung Kim1 and Dong Ho Lee12

Author affiliations

1 Department of Internal Medicine, Seoul National University Bundang Hospital, Seoul National University College of Medicine, 166 Gumi-ro, Bundang-gu, Seongnam-si, 463-707, Gyeonggi-do, Republic of Korea

2 Health Promotion Center, Seoul National University Bundang Hospital, Seoul National University College of Medicine, 166 Gumi-ro, Bundang-gu, Seongnam-si, 463-707, Gyeonggi-do, Republic of Korea

3 Medical Research Collaborating Center, Seoul National University Bundang Hospital, Seoul National University College of Medicine, 166 Gumi-ro, Bundang-gu, Seongnam-si, 463-707, Gyeonggi-do, Republic of Korea

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Citation and License

BMC Gastroenterology 2012, 12:145  doi:10.1186/1471-230X-12-145

Published: 18 October 2012

Abstract

Background

Liver function tests (LFTs) can be affected by many factors and the proposed effects of coffee on LFT require a comprehensive evaluation. The aim of this study was to elucidate whether drinking coffee, smoking, or drinking alcohol have independent effects on LFTs in Korean health-check examinees.

Methods

We used the responses of 500 health-check examinees, who had participated in a self-administered questionnaire survey about coffee, alcohol drinking, and smoking habits.

Results

Coffee consumption was closely related to male gender, high body mass index (BMI), alcohol drinking, and smoking. On univariable and multivariable analyses, drinking coffee lowered serum levels of total protein, albumin, and aspartate aminotransferases (AST). On multivariable analyses, smoking raised serum γ-glutamyl transferase (GGT) level and decreased serum protein and albumin levels, while alcohol drinking raised GGT level after adjustment for age, gender, regular medication, BMI, coffee and alcohol drinking amounts, and smoking.

Conclusions

Coffee consumption, smoking, and alcohol drinking affect the individual components of LFT in different ways, and the above 3 habits each have an impact on LFTs. Therefore, their effects on LFTs should be carefully interpreted, and further study on the mechanism of the effects is warranted.

Keywords:
Coffee; Alcohols; Smoking; Liver function tests; Gamma-glutamyltransferase