Coffee is good for you, more science shows

Coffee beans in a mug

"Participants drinking four or more cups per day, compared with those drinking less coffee and nondrinkers, were more likely to drink instant coffee and be current smokers, whereas participants drinking one to three cups per day were older, more likely to have a university degree, and more likely to report "excellent" health".

The study included 498,134 non-pregnant participants who drank 1 to up to 8 cups of coffee daily.

Of course there has also been evidence to suggest that coffee could be bad for you. Over 10 years of follow-up, 14 225 deaths occurred.

He added: "Healthier coffee, free from sugar or syrup, should also be encouraged to optimize any health benefit". So if you drank that coffee, you had a slightly lower chance of dying during the 10 years the study examined.

The study found it didn't matter how the coffee was drunk, with espresso style, instant and even decaffeinated coffee having the effect.

A prospective cohort study of almost 500,000 people in the United Kingdom found that drinking 1 to 8 or more cups of coffee per day was inversely associated with all-cause mortality.


Even people who said they drank more than eight cups a day were less likely to die, on average, than non-drinkers, the team, led by NCI's Erikka Lotfield, reported.

Dr Loftfield, of the National Institutes of Health in Maryland, said: "Coffee drinking was inversely associated with mortality, including among those drinking eight or more cups per day and those with genetic mutations indicating slower or faster caffeine metabolism".

No doubt more coffee studies will be along in the very near future. An editorial by Eliseo Guallar from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in Baltimore, Maryland, said there is no way to know if coffee prevents chronic disease and reduces mortality because there are too many factors to weigh like why people start drinking coffee. However, earlier studies focused primarily on health risks after the presence of such diseases were found. Instead, it could be one or a combination of several of the hundreds of chemicals that make up coffee.

Past studies have indicated an inverse association between drinking coffee and the risk of developing chronic conditions such as heart disease, diabetes, Parkinson's and cancers of the liver, bowel, colon and endometrium. Some studies have suggested that unfiltered coffee, made in percolaters or French presses, might raise unhealthy cholesterol levels.

That finding, combined with the apparent longevity-boosting effect of decaf coffee, suggests that caffeine isn't the life-lengthening mechanism at work in java, Loftfield said. However, the findings provide additional reassurance to coffee drinkers, while reinforcing previous research on the benefits of the beverage to human health.

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