Decades ago, some hippies thought it would be a good idea to spread a myth around health circles that coffee was in some way bad for you. But something doesn’t become good or bad for you based upon opinion – it either is, or it is not.
Is Coffee Good for You?
Extensive research has found that higher volumes – as much as 4 to 12 cups of coffee daily – can help prevent most major killers, including cardiovascular disease, cancer, diabetes, liver disease, and Alzheimer’s disease
In case-controlled human studies, compared to coffee abstainers, those who drank the most coffee cut their risks of breast cancer by 57% and diabetes by 67%
June 8, 2011, issue of the Journal of the National Cancer Institute. The research team reported that men who drank over 6 cups of coffee a day had an 18% lower risk of prostate cancer – and a 40% lower risk of aggressive or lethal prostate cancer. This effect was noted for decaffeinated as well as caffeinated coffee – indicating that compounds other than caffeine are responsible for this preventive effect.
With breast cancer ranked as the second leading cause of cancer death among American women (after lung cancer), The May 14, 2011, issue of Breast Cancer Research reported that postmenopausal women who consumed 5 cups of coffee daily exhibited a 57% decrease in their risk of developing ER-negative (non-hormone-responsive) breast cancer.
Colorectal cancer is the second most common cause of cancer-related deaths in the US overall (both sexes). A large meta-analysis has reviewed the combined data from 24 previous studies and found an overall 30% lower incidence of colorectal cancer among those categorised as heavy coffee drinkers.
A case control study found that individuals who consumed more than three cups of coffee daily had a 40% lower risk of oral, pharyngeal, and throat cancers, compared to those who drank one cup of coffee or less each day.
In a 2005 study, just one cup a day was associated with a 42% lower risk of liver cancer.
A 2011 study confirmed coffee’s DNA-related effect on cancer risk. The researchers found that regular coffee drinkers enjoyed a 13% decreased risk of cancers generally, and those who consumed high levels of coffee enjoyed an 18% decreased risk. Additionally, they enjoyed specific protection against prostate, breast, colorectal, pharyngeal, esophageal, hepatocellular, pancreatic, bladder, and endometrial cancers.
Drinking just one cup of coffee a day – caffeinated or decaffeinated – can decrease the risk of developing diabetes by 13%. But at 12 cups a day, the risk of getting diabetes is slashed by 67%
As the leading cause of death, cardiovascular disease (CVD) kills over one third more Americans than cancer.
A 15-year study of over 41,000 women found that the risk of death from cardiovascular disease was 24% lower among those consuming 1 to 3 cups of coffee daily.
Chronic liver disease and cirrhosis cause 35,000 deaths per year in the United States. Cirrhosis is the ninth leading cause of death in America, responsible for 1.2% of all US deaths
Those drinking 4 cups of coffee daily exhibited a full 84% lower risk of cirrhosis, according to a study in the Annals of Epidemiology. This is consistent with an earlier 8-year study of over 120,000 people that found that each cup of coffee daily lowered the risk of dying from cirrhosis by 23%
Alzheimer’s disease becomes increasingly prevalent with aging, striking more than 40% of those over age 84.
Scientists have discovered that long-term coffee intake exhibits a dose-dependent association with improved cognitive function and memory, and it protects primary neuronal cells.
In fact, one mouse study has far-reaching implications for humans. Researchers found that moderate caffeine intake – equivalent to human consumption of 5 cups of coffee daily – began to reverse Alzheimer’s damage in just 5 weeks.
Although the mechanism by which coffee lowers the risk of cognitive decline is not known, a 2009 study on mice found that caffeine decreases levels, in both the blood and the brain, of amyloid-beta, a substance involved in the development of Alzheimer’s – the equivalent of 5 cups of coffee daily in humans.
Caffeinated coffee has also been associated with protection against Parkinson’s disease, the second most common neurodegenerative disorder after Alzheimer’s. A study of 29,000 individuals found that one to four cups daily decreased the risk of Parkinson’s by 47% and 5 or more cups decreased the risk by 60%.
Those who drink the most coffee have a substantially reduced risk of developing diabetes, cancer, liver disease, cognitive decline, and DNA damage. But the health benefits of coffee’s complex phytochemistry don’t end there:
Decaffeinated and caffeinated coffee lowered the risk of kidney stones in women by 9 and 10%, respectively.
Caffeinated coffee reduced the incidence of gallstones and gall bladder disease in both men and women.
Scientists found that coffee boosted regular weight loss by 8 pounds and promoted body fat metabolism.
Sometimes-inconsistent findings have generally linked coffee drinking with reduced all-cause mortality and cardiovascular mortality.
For athletes, caffeine reduced muscle pain, increased energy (ergogenic aid), and enhanced endurance.
One study found caffeine, taken 2 hours before exercise, prevented exercise-induced asthma.
Confirming earlier research, a 2011 study on over 50,000 women found that 4 cups of coffee daily lowered the risk of depression by 20%, compared to coffee abstainers.
Antibacterials in coffee were found to inhibit plaque formation and prevent dental decay.
Whether caffeinated or decaffeinated, coffee consumption prevents constipation and – despite the myth that coffee dehydrates the body – contributes to the body’s fluid requirements.
A large, as-yet-unpublished study presented October 24, 2011, found that men and women with the highest coffee consumption have a 13% and 18% lower risk, respectively, for basal cell carcinoma (a type of skin cancer).
One 2009 study on humans found that 3 cups of coffee daily for 3 weeks increased the number and metabolic activity of beneficial bacteria called bifidobacteria. These intestinal bacteria may explain one mechanism for coffee’s benefits: bacteria can boost immunity, lower blood pressure, and increase mineral absorption.
How Do Coffee Compounds Work?
Despite coffee’s powerful antioxidant punch, the mechanism for coffee’s protection against a host of diseases may involve a lot more than a fierce battle between antioxidants and free radicals. Scientists are beginning to discover that coffee’s phytochemistry also exerts direct biological actions on the body, which may underpin a web of indirect, protective effects against diseases from diabetes to cancer.
Some people are sensitive to caffeine’s stimulating effects on the central nervous system, even just one cup a day can be too much for some. Coffee is associated to adrenal fatigue, a common problem with modern stressed lifestyles.
Caffeine is a proven sleep disruptor, so is best avoided later in the day.
It is possible for caffeine to accumulate in the body, resulting in heart palpitations. Drinking clay regularly detoxifies the body of caffeine.
The beneficial effects are for COFFEE; with espresso and Americano being the pure forms of coffee.
However, MILK is proven to be a leading cause of Cancer, Osteoporosis, Auto-Immune Diseases, and Bowel diseases.
Whilst SUGAR is proven to lower the immune system response, accelerate ageing, and cause adult onset diabetes.
Whilst some people are very sensitive to coffee, many people can perfectly well consume it without problems. I was shocked to learn about the massive health benefits associated with people who consume higher volumes of coffee. I find that if I have too much coffee – FOR ME – I start to feel jittery, anxious, and even a little sad. But as part of my daily pattern, I find I can consume 2 or 3 cups of coffee daily (before noon) – Americano black – with no adverse effects, which I appreciate for it’s ability to help lower my risk of various diseases.