Drinking Coffee Actually Has Health Benefits, Study Finds

Drinking Coffee Actually Has Health Benefits, Study Finds

Drinking Coffee Actually Has Health Benefits, Study Finds

The good news is that overall, coffee consumption was determined to be "generally safe within usual levels of intake" - but if you're you want to get even more specific, the sweet spot was three to four cups a day.

"The link between coffee drinking and reduced risk of development of heart failure and stroke was consistently noted in all three studies", said lead author of the project Dr. Laura Stevens. There were also lower rates of type 2 diabetes, gallstones and dementia associated with coffee consumption.

Dr Marc Gunter, of the International Agency for Research on Cancer, said: "We are not at the stage of recommending people to drink more or less coffee".

The "umbrella review" examined 201 studies based on observational research and 17 studies based on clinical trials. What we can say is that people who already enjoy moderate amounts of coffee as part of their diet are most probably getting health benefits from it, rather than harm.

The researchers say coffee drinkers should stick to "healthy coffees" - which avoid extra sugar, milk or cream, or a fatty snack on the side.

Reassuringly, harms were not apparent apart from during pregnancy when coffee drinking was linked to low birth weight, premature birth (in the first six months of pregnancy) and miscarriage. Moderate coffee intake is usually considered to be around four or five daily cups, or the equivalent of up to 400 milligrams of caffeine per day.

The greatest risk reduction was noticed for liver cirrhosis: "any versus no coffee consumption" was linked to a 39 percent lower risk of developing this condition. "Does coffee prevent chronic disease and reduce mortality?"

"Factors such as age, whether people smoked or not and how much exercise they took could all have had an effect", he said.

Decaffeinated coffee has a similar impact to the standard version, they found, suggesting the caffeine is not responsible for health benefits.

But, this news might not be strong enough to start a coffee habit.

As the paper points to health benefits "associated" with coffee consumption, but not proved to be causal, researchers believe further studies would be beneficial.

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