Caffeine Causes Lumps in Breast: Is it True?

Is it true that caffeine causes lumps in the breast or its merely one of the many medical hearsays that we hear now and then? Well, let’s go digging for the truth, one can never be too careful about health issues after all.

Checking lumps on breast

The answer to whether caffeine affects tissues of the breast is yes, but as to if caffeine causes lumps in the breast, we shall soon find out. 

There is a connection between caffeine and breast tissue, and it might be complex and confusing to explain this. But do not allow this connection to affect your tea or coffee drinking habits. 

There are some important things you should know as we proceed with this issue. First, caffeine is not a breast cancer risk. Second, there might be a little connection between caffeine and the density of breast tissue but it doesn’t necessarily mean a cause. Third, several studies have concluded that dense tissue of the breast is a strong breast cancer risk.

There are only a few studies on the density of breast tissue and caffeine with mixed results. In the year 2000, a study was conducted, and it found no association between breast density and caffeine. Another study of adolescents in 2019 found out that drinking caffeine has no link with breast density for pre-menopausal women. However, a study in 2018 discovered a small connection between breast density and caffeine intake. Although the results differed based on whether the participants were posted or pre-menopausal.

Does Caffeine Cause Lump In Breast

As of now, there is not enough proof to show that caffeine causes breast lumps. However, some women have reported relieved breast pains after staying away from or reducing their caffeine intake. So we would not fully rule out the possibility of a connection.

Presently, there is no exact explanation or understanding of the relationship between the density of breast tissues and caffeine. There are suggestions that several bioactive compounds present in caffeine may trigger the enzymes that are involved in the metabolism of estrogen and reducing inflammation. These active chemicals, also known as phytochemicals, may add groups of methyl to DNA molecules interrupting gene transcription.

Animal trials in 2012 reported that compounds in coffee were suppressed breast tumor formation. A 2015 research claimed that caffeic acid and caffeine possessed some anticancer properties in association with receptor genes for estrogen.

What Does Dense Breast Tissue Mean?

Having dense tissues in the breast means the tissues are glandular or fibrous with less fat. Almost fifty percent of the female population in America has dense breasts, and it is considered normal. This density is divided into four classes. 

Class A: almost complete fatty tissue in the breast

Class B: scattered denseness in several areas

Class C: different dense tissue of the breast

Class D: extremely dense tissue

About forty percent of the women are placed in class C, and almost ten percent are in class D. women with smaller sized breasts, and younger women usually experience dense breasts. A good number of women between the ages of thirty to thirty-nine have dense breast tissue, while only a few women in their seventies have this.

This does not cancel the possibility of anyone irrespective of their age or breast size to have dense tissues of the breast.

Breast Cancer And Breast Density Risk

It is a well-established fact that the density of breast tissues increases the possibility of having breast cancer. But note that having dense tissue does not automatically imply that the person will get breast cancer. A concern with dense tissues of the breasts is that a mammogram may not reveal cancer that is developing in dense tissue. An estimated fifty percent of cases of breast cancer can not be viewed on a mammogram.

The Risk of Breast Screen vs. Benefits

Having regular breast screening for dense breast women is a personal decision. You should discuss the cons and pros with your doctor. The importance of having a supplemental breast screen is that it helps for early detection. And it is much better to detect breast lumps early as they help for better result outcome.

Breast density, on the other hand, can be changed but can be monitored by an ultrasound and a mammogram. A recent article published that a reduction in the density of breast tissues may eventually lead to a decreased number of breast cancer development.

The researcher for this article proposed reducing breast density may be achieved hypothetically by using tamoxifen citrate, especially for women with high risks. Tamoxifen drug is anti-estrogen, which has been found out to decrease breast density particularly for women below forty years of age.

Breast Cancer And Research

For several years now, there has been ongoing research on breast cancer and caffeine. It has been discovered, that drinking caffeinated drinks or coffee does not increase one’s risk of developing breast cancer. This applies to both older and younger women.

The reasons are, however, not stated clearly. A high intake of caffeine appears to reduce breast cancer risks for women in their menopause phase of life.

1090 breast cancer women were studied in Sweden, and it was discovered that their disease prognosis was not associated with coffee consumption. Women with receptor-positive estrogen type breast tumors who consumed more than two coffee cups had forty-nine percent decreased chance of cancer recurrence when compared to women who took less coffee.

There are suggestions that caffeic acid and caffeine contain anticancer characteristics that may slow down the growth of breast cancer by causing the estrogen receptors to be more tamoxifen sensitive. Researchers are currently searching for what caffeine properties might affect the progression and risk of breast cancer.


It is an unfounded belief that caffeine causes lumps in the breast. Based on decades-old research, this is false. And there is limited evidence of a link between breast density and caffeine, which even varies for pre and postmenopausal women. But if your breast tissue is dense, it puts you at risk for cancer of the breast, and you should go for frequent screening tests.

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