You might have seen the news recently that two major international studies in the European Union and the United States of America have found an association between coffee drinking and having a longer life.
According to these reports, people who drink about three cups of coffee a day tend to have a longer life as compared to non-coffee drinkers.
Wait, say what?!
The first research, done by the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) and the Imperial College London, followed half a million people across 10 European countries. This study used subjects who are 35 years at the time of study and are generally healthy, excluding those with cancer, heart diseases and diabetes.
The second research, completed by a team in the Keck School of Medicine of University of Southern California, included more than 180,000 participants of various ethnic backgrounds in the United States.
Both studies found an association between drinking coffee and having a longer life in general. The European study claimed that they found higher coffee consumption was linked with lower risk of death, especially those of circulatory and digestive disease.
These results were similar across the 10 European countries, making them conclusive that coffee drinking is linked to a longer life.
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The American study found that coffee, whether it is caffeinated or not, is beneficial because coffee drinkers had a lower risk of death due to heart diseases, cancer, stroke, diabetes, respiratory and kidney diseases.
However, experts who examined both studies have cautioned against taking the studies with absolute trust.
While both studies have found association, both results were observational in nature, and failed to prove cause and effect.
In addition, experts also found loopholes in the studies.
For example, the first study by IARC failed to establish their subjects’ coffee drinking habits over the course of 16 years, but only asked about their coffee consumption once – at the start of the study. If their subjects have changes in their coffee consumption, the researchers did not manage to capture that information.
Also, the study also found a link between women who drank lots of coffee and the higher risk of cancer death. This negative finding was dismissed as “spurious” and ignored.
How about you? Would you believe in these studies and start drinking more coffee from today?
Perhaps the best way to interpret the studies is to take the law of moderation. Too much of anything good might not continue to be good in excess while anything bad might not be bad if taken in moderation.
Therefore, if you are a coffee drinker, you might want to continue your coffee drinking habits without change.
If you are not a coffee drinker, you can choose to try your hands at drinking some coffee now and then, but there is no hard and fast rule that you should drink coffee in order to have a longer life. After all, remember: non-caffeinated works as well.
At the end of the day, it is still up to our healthy living habits that will give us a longer and fulfilling life!
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