When coffee is in the headlines, I tend to shield my eyes. I don’t want to hear why one of my dearest pleasures in life is potentially bad for me. And if you’re a coffee drinker, I imagine you feel the same.
Well, take heart fellow java lovers, because today’s news will inspire you to drink up! A new study published in the New England Journal of Medicine is suggesting that coffee may be linked to a longer life.
The AARP joined researchers from the National Institute of Health to conduct a very long study regarding coffee consumption. The study lasted 13 years, to be exact. And during that time, researchers followed more than 400,000 healthy men and women between the ages of 50 and 71. In the time frame of 13 years, 13 percent of the participants died.
The research concluded that overall, coffee drinkers were less likely than their peers to die throughout the study. Also, the more coffee the individuals drank, the lower their mortality risk seemed to be. This is compared to those in the study who drank no coffee at all. The male coffee drinkers who drank more than six cups of coffee a day were 10 percent less likely to die during the study; while the females with the same consumption were 15 percent less likely to die during the study.
The views have often been mixed about the positive versus the negative aspects of coffee. Often researchers believe coffee, or the caffeine rather, might contribute to heart disease. However, Neal D. Freedman, PhD, the lead author of the study, explains how this research can reduce those concerns.
“There has been some concern that coffee might increase the risk of death, and this provides some reassurance against that worry.”
A plethora of factors were considered when drawing conclusions in the study. The diets and other habits of these coffee drinkers may have played a significant role in their longevity. However, researchers pointed out that coffee contains more than 1,000 compounds, many of which contain healthy antioxidants – arguing even more for the case that coffee is a strong contender in promoting good health.
The study and findings are interesting. As it’s evaluated, there’s bound to be more discussion on the topic. Until then, the research is inspiring enough for me - and I’m sure most other coffee drinkers – to have that second cup, if not for taste then in the name of health.
May 18th, 2012