Photo by Unsplash
An extensive new study on the health benefits/risks regarding the consumption of coffee over a 30-year period suggests that a few cups of coffee a day has proven to actually be good for you. Overall, the study looked at three different groups that added up to a total of about 168,000 women and 45,000 men between the ages of about 25-75 (when the study began) who recorded how much coffee they drank and what they ate to the best of their knowledge every four years. After the 30 years were over, Dr. Frank B. Hu found that those who drank coffee on a moderately regular basis (1-5 cups a day) were less prone to dying of chronic diseases, had a slightly reduced rate of mortality, and that its consumption (moderate) showed little to no signs that coffee causes heart disease or cancer.
Hu found that coffee contains antioxidants, vital minerals like magnesium (which plays a role in a person’s resistance to chronic pain, fatigue, and diseases related to stress and aging), and that it actually improved insulin sensitivity which refers to the body’s ability to maintain blood glucose levels. When someone has low insulin sensitivity, they are unable to take in proper amounts of insulin and therefore their body compensates by producing more insulin which in turn leads to serious health problems like high blood pressure and heart disease. Hu also theorized (but did not have enough evidence to claim) that coffee might also act as an antidepressant and had a small effect on suicides and neurological issues.
Overall, the study indicates that because of the health benefits of coffee- it can be incorporated into a healthy diet. However, this does not mean that non-coffee drinkers should start consuming it as a means of prevention against illness and increasing one’s life span. In fact, many people could have bad reactions to caffeine and it is known to stunt growth in children and adolescents as well as endanger pregnant women and their fetuses. Also, overconsumption (over 5 cups a day) can lead to heart disease and other illnesses. All this study goes to show is that moderate consumption of coffee is not dangerous and unhealthy as the world has pegged it for many years.