Coffee Lowers Death Risk: Moderate Consumption Helps Longevity, Suggest Studies

Coffee Lowers Death Risk

A few cups of coffee a day lowers death risk, indicated researchers from the Harvard.

People who drink coffee daily are less likely to die from heart disease, neurological disease, type 2 diabetes, or suicide as compared to people who do not, concluded a new study. A new study, published by researchers from the Harvard School of Public Health, studied the benefits of both caffeinated and decaffeinated coffee. It has indicated that statistically, coffee drinkers who down a few cups of coffee each day have a better chance of extending their lifespan, than people who refrain from drinking even a single cup.

The study appears to be restricted to coffee drinkers in America and has found that both caffeinated and decaffeinated coffee both conferred a lower risk of dying from the leading causes of death in the United States, reported MSN. Furthermore, the study has drawn the conclusions empirically.

Researchers did not specifically test how upping coffee consumption would change health outlooks. Hence they can’t be sure that coffee is directly responsible for decreasing risk of death, reported Reuters. Instead, the researchers looked at death trends in groups with varying amounts of coffee consumption and realized people who drank coffee regularly seemed to live a longer life, and with reduced risk of degenerative diseases, said senior author Dr. Frank Hu of the Harvard School of Public Health in Boston,

“The main takeaway is that regular consumption of coffee can be incorporated into a healthy diet. This study provides further evidence that moderate consumption of coffee may confer health benefits in terms of reducing premature death due to several diseases. These data support the 2015 Dietary Guidelines Advisory Report that concluded that ‘moderate coffee consumption can be incorporated into a healthy dietary pattern.'”

The study published in the journal Circulation involved 208,501 participants in total, who completed a follow-up questionnaire about their diet every four years. The routine evaluation lasted for three decades, with researchers tracking coffee consumption among the participants. Over the years, they found a pattern emerge that was directly related to how much coffee they drank on an average day.

Observing death rates among the participants, researchers found that those who drank about 3 to 5 cups of coffee daily were far less likely to die from life-shortening illnesses like heart disease and type 2 diabetes. Moreover, coffee appeared to protect people from neurodegenerative diseases like Parkinson’s disease. What’s even more interesting is the fact coffee somehow managed to lower deaths by suicide as well.

To ensure their results weren’t being influenced by other factors, researchers also accounted for environmental factors that influence death. Habits such smoking, alcohol consumption, as well as the participants’ physical activity levels and Body Mass Index (BMI), besides other dietary factors, were analyzed over the 30-year period. Eventually it was coffee that proved to be the elixir that was linked to the lower death rate.

There have been studies at Harvard that indicate even moderate to heavy coffee drinking doesn’t influence high blood pressure. In fact, after closely examining 36 separate studies, it became apparent that coffee could actually protect the heart. Speaking about the effects of coffee on the human body, the study’s co-author Ming Ding, a doctoral student at Harvard’s Department of Nutrition, said,

“Bioactive compounds in coffee reduce insulin resistance and systemic inflammation. That could explain some of our findings. However, more studies are needed to investigate the biological mechanisms producing these effects.”

Essentially, the study concludes that those who are drinking coffee should continue to enjoy it. However, those who don’t consume a hot cup of Joe needn’t start consuming solely for health reasons, continued Dr. Hu,

“There is no evidence of harm of regular consumption in terms of chronic disease risk or mortality, and consistent evidence that consumption of coffee reduces the risk of diabetes and cardiovascular disease.”

Though coffee appears to lower death risk, the only precaution researchers advice is to be mindful of how much sugar you put in your brew, reported Fox News.

[Photo by Kevork Djansezian / Getty Images]