The study included nearly 450,000 participants between 40 and 69 years of age (55.3% women) from the UK Biobank database. Each participant completed a questionnaire asking how many cups of coffee they drank per day and whether they usually drank instant, ground or decaffeinated coffee. The researchers followed up with the participants after a median of 12,5 years to see the health outcomes.
Coffee linked with a longer lifespan
The researchers found that instant coffee was the most commonly consumed type with 44,1% of participants drinking it. Ground and decaffeinated coffee were consumed by 18,4% and 15,2% of participants respectively. The remaining 22,4% of participants who didn’t drink any coffee served as a control group for the study.
The researchers grouped participants based on their daily coffee intake into 6 categories: none, fewer than one, one, two to three, four to five, and more than five cups a day. After analysing these groups, they found that drinking 2-3 cups of coffee a day was linked with a longer lifespan compared with avoiding coffee. Here is the breakdown for each coffee type.
- 27% lower all-cause mortality – Ground coffee
- 14% lower all-cause mortality – Decaffeinated coffee
- 11% lower all-cause mortality – Instant coffee
Coffee linked with a lower risk of cardiovascular diseases
The study revealed a similar beneficial link when it comes to cardiovascular diseases such as coronary heart disease, congestive heart failure and ischaemic stroke. Drinking 2-3 cups of coffee per day was linked with a lower risk of cardiovascular diseases compared to no coffee.
- 20% lower risk of cardiovascular disease – Ground coffee
- 9% lower risk of cardiovascular disease – Instant coffee
- 6% lower risk of cardiovascular disease – Decaffeinated coffee
Arrhythmia was diagnosed in 6,7% of participants during the follow-up. Interestingly, ground and instant coffee (but not decaffeinated) were associated with a lower risk of arrhythmias compared with no coffee.
- 17% reduced risk of arrhythmia – Ground coffee (4-5 cups per day)
- 12% reduced risk of arrhythmia – Instant coffee (2-3 cups per day)
“In this large observational study, ground, instant and decaffeinated coffee were associated with equivalent reductions in the incidence of cardiovascular disease and death from cardiovascular disease or any cause. The results suggest that mild to moderate intake of ground, instant and decaffeinated coffee should be considered part of a healthy lifestyle. Caffeine is the most well-known constituent in coffee, but the beverage contains more than 100 biologically active components. It is likely that the non-caffeinated compounds were responsible for the positive relationships observed between coffee drinking, cardiovascular disease and survival,” said study author Professor Peter Kistler of the Baker Heart and Diabetes Research Institute, Australia.
Are you going to start drinking coffee after reading about this study? Or should we say, are 2-3 cups per day enough for you?