Maybe it’s sad to say, but I have to have my coffee in the morning. Every morning. But, I think when it’s all said and done, I only average two cups a day (three on a “good day”). So, I’m not a raging caffeinated lunatic.
In fact, my habit may be a good thing… since there are actually purported health benefits to my morning joe.
A new study even suggests that coffee may keep your mental health sharp when you get to your golden years. This was a study long in the making. Swedish and Danish researchers tracked coffee consumption in a group of about 1,400 middle-aged men and women for an average of 21 years.
The scientists found that their subjects, who reported drinking three to five cups of coffee on a daily basis, were 65 percent less likely to have developed dementia, compared with those who drank two cups or less. People who drank more than five cups a day also reduced their risk of dementia, but there were not enough people in this group to draw a solid conclusion. During the study period, 61 participants developed dementia, 48 with Alzheimer’s disease.
The interesting part of the study is that the benefits seem to apply to people who have 3 or more cups (apparently I need to drink more coffee). Or then again, maybe not. Confusing, I know. But read on.
As with many studies, they push their findings, but then take a step back and let you know that it’s not meant to suggest you use coffee as a preventative measure.
“This is an observational study,” says Dr. Miia Kivipelto, an associate professor of neurology at the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm, and the lead author of the study. “We have no evidence that for people who are not drinking coffee, taking up drinking will have a protective effect.”
January 31st, 2009