Coffee addicts may have something to celebrate. A new government report says it’s okay to drink up to five cups of coffee a day. The report, which was submitted to the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the Department of Health and Human Services, indicates that moderate coffee drinking, defined as three to five cups a day, is not associated with negative health issues as first thought.
ABC News reports that the committee goes even further stating that coffee may have health benefits, such as reducing the risk of type 2 diabetes and possibly protecting against Parkinson’s disease. Findings like those in the report will shape revised governmental dietary guidelines.
Coffee isn’t alone in being exonerated of blame for health problems. The report also suggests that what we thought about food cholesterol may be wrong. Research indicates that the cholesterol we get from food has little to do with blood cholesterol although saturated fats and trans fats may increase blood cholesterol.
Mother Jones provided a brief overview of the report’s key findings. Americans do not eat enough whole grains and we consume too much sodium and saturated fat. We also tend to lack vitamin D, calcium, potassium, and fiber. Vegetable intake has declined in recent years, especially for children.
The report predictably slammed added sugars for contributing to a number of health issues, including, obesity, cavities, high blood pressure, and possibly cardiovascular disease. The committee recommended that most people limit their added sugar intake to between 4.5 to 9.4 teaspoons a day depending on their BMI.
The report further states that moderate alcohol consumption is fine for most adults, but with a caveat.
“However, it is not recommended that anyone begin drinking or drink more frequently on the basis of potential health benefits.”
Despite the good news about drinking up to five cups of coffee a day, the committee’s report did cite concerns about caffeine intake at higher levels. The Inquisitr reports that caffeine is the world’s most widely used drug. Although caffeine has been linked to improvements in memory, high levels of caffeine, such as those in energy drinks, may be dangerous for children and pregnant women.
Watch for the updated governmental dietary guidelines later this year. Meanwhile, drink no more than five cups of coffee a day, ditch the extra sugar, and eat your veggies.
[Image via iStockphoto]