Drinking Coffee Cuts Your Risk of Dying by 16 Percent, Study Says

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Even the heaviest coffee drinkers are less likely to die early than people who don't drink coffee, new research finds. New research shows it may boost chances for a longer life, even for those who down at least eight cups a day.

It didn't matter whether the coffee was decaf or regular, ground or instant - all were beneficial (though the connection to lower risk of death was weaker for instant coffee).

Coffee beans are loaded with nutrients and phytochemicals - including lignans, quinides, and magnesium - individually known as polyphenols.

The study, conducted by the US National Cancer Institute, used data from more than 500,000 British volunteers.

A study published past year in The BMJ British medical journal looked at more than 200 previous studies and suggested drinking three to four cups of coffee a day can positively impact health more than cause harm.

Researchers accessed genetic data for 403,816 of the 498,134 study participants to create 2 genetic "caffeine metabolism" scores (CMSG) by "adding the number of alleles of single base changes, or single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), previously associated with blood caffeine metabolite levels, and the map near genes with plausible roles in caffeine metabolism". Today's latest study, published Monday in the journal JAMA Internal Medicine, says drinking coffee will help extend your life span.

Actually caffeine can keep you more hydrated than other liquids because you are drinking it with a volume of fluid like iced coffee or tea.

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Still, some doctors warn against starting a coffee habit. "But when the data were looked at more carefully, and more factors were controlled for, and more contemporary methods of producing the coffee and consuming the coffee were taken into consideration, it seems not only were those potential negative effects not corroborated, but it turns out that a lot of positive effects of coffee were identified".

The study looked at almost 500,000 adults in the United Kingdom over the course of 10 years.

Overall, coffee drinkers were about 10 percent to 15 percent less likely to die than abstainers during a decade of follow-up. The researchers were then able to correlate the rates of death with the amount of coffee that each cohort described drinking each day.

"While this research offers further reassurance to current coffee drinkers, people should not start drinking coffee purely in an attempt to become healthier", he advised. In fact, the opposite may be true, as studies have shown consumption can increase numbers of beneficial bacteria and improve microbial diversity.

In many studies, it hasn't mattered whether coffee was caffeinated or not, which indicates that many benefits may not be connected to caffeine - there are all kinds of other antioxidant-rich compounds in coffee that could have an effect.

In the end, there were 14,225 deaths due to cancer (58 percent); cardiovascular disease (20 percent) and respiratory disease (4 percent).

And the researchers say there's no added benefit to drinking more coffee than one usually does.

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