People who drink more coffee live longer

Experts find four or five cups will do it

Coffee makes you live longer. This is a coup for the many who rely on coffee, those who spend days buzzing and shaking, those who comply – proudly – with all the usual stereotypes of the caffeine addict.

What’s new? Harvard professor Dr Frank Hu has completed what is likely the biggest ever study into coffee, testing 200,000 people and spending 40 years studying its effect on the body, reporting that people who drink more live longer. And drinking a moderate amount (classified as up to five cups a day) reduces your chance of you dying from heart disease or diabetes.

Despite the extensive research, Dr Hu admits that the correlation is slightly unclear.

“Coffee is certainly a very complex beverage. Besides caffeine, it contains hundreds, perhaps thousands, of bioactive compounds. So it’s very difficult, perhaps impossible, to tease out the effects of individual compounds or chemicals.”

Pretentious? Yes. But good for you

Pretentious? Yes. But good for you

Coffee’s  benefits derive from  hundreds of different minerals and antioxidants. This is why one month, you’ll read that it definitely gives you cancer, and the next that a coffee a day can cure it.

This study took several generations of scientists to complete, so it’s more thorough. Apparently, the more you drink, the more you’ll feel the benefits – though this does peak at around four or five cups a day. Unfortunately for moody Dylan wannabes, the team also reported that the best way to enjoy coffee is to take it without cigarettes.

“We found that the health benefits of coffee are more pronounced, or evident, in people who don’t smoke. In other words, smoking actually masks the potential health benefits of drinking coffee, and it’s really important to separate the effects of coffee from smoking.”

There’s no ambiguity on smoking – it’s Bad For You – but coffee has been vanquished again. Until next time.