Drinking Coffee Actually Has Health Benefits, Study Finds

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Earlier this year, Spanish researchers reported 20,000 people who drank at least four cups of coffee a day had a 64% lower risk of death than those who never or nearly never drank coffee.

"Coffee drinking appears safe within usual patterns of consumption", the researchers concluded in their study, published in the British Medical Journal on November 22.

Listen up, coffee addicts: A new search says that drinking three to four cups of coffee per day might be good for you.

The research, which combined data from 200 previous studies, showed that coffee consumption is linked to lower risks of diabetes, liver disease, dementia, and some cancers.

They warned people should not start drinking coffee, or increasing their intake, for health reasons.

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However the authors of the study also point out that the potential health benefits are not universal, with coffee consumption by pregnant women linked to a higher risk of miscarriage.

"Consequently, there is likely to be a bias towards better health in those who chose to drink coffee compared to those that avoid it, who may do so because they have health problems - this is a limitation of the studies this review looked at as these factors weren't always taken into account". To acquire an understanding of its effects on human health, Robin Poole, a public health specialist at the University of Southampton in Britain, led an "umbrella review" of 218 studies around the world.

Experts said it is impossible to know whether the health lift it due to the coffee or other habits that are more common amongst drinkers.

There was less evidence for the effects of drinking decaffeinated coffee but it had similar benefits for a number of outcomes.

Further research may now be needed to determine whether the relationship highlighted by this study is a causal one.

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However, But Prof Paul Roderick, co-author of the study, said it was hard to ascertain whether coffee had made the difference. "There is a balance of risks in life, and the benefits of moderate consumption of coffee seem to outweigh the risks", he added.

They also urge coffee drinkers to stick to "healthy coffees", so your Venti Iced Toffee Nut Latte with Hazelnuts and White Chocolate Mocha Sauce might be off the menu.

"Is coffee good for you?"

The study collated evidence from over 200 previous studies finding that three or four cups a day offers the greatest health benefits. As always, feel free to sound off in the comments section below!

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