Coffee is one of the most consumed drinks in the world, with a history going back to the middle of the XV century. Millions of people around the globe have coffee with or instead of breakfast each morning, enjoy one or more coffee breaks during the day and meet friends over a cup of the energizing drink. More than 500 billion cups are consumed each year!
Although coffee is such a popular, ancient drink there are still arguments and studies on all the different ways it affects the human organism. The common opinion most people have in the back of their mind and the main reason for many regular coffee drinkers to give up that habit is that they believe caffeine to be harmful. While it is true that when used extensively it can cause headache, anxiety or dehydration, more recent studies show that regular moderate coffee consumption is benign and even beneficial for healthy individuals. A research conducted by the National Institutes of Health - AARP Diet and Health in 2012 proved that the amount of coffee consumed correlates negatively with the risk of death and that coffee drinkers live longer than non-drinkers. That was confirmed by an ongoing 22-year study published in the New England Journal of medicine in 2012. The scholars from the Harvard School of Public Health stated that “the overall balance of risks and benefits [of coffee consumption] are on the side of benefits.”
Moreover, coffee reduces the risk of cancer, Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, dementia, diabetes type 2 and heart disease. According to a research from the Ernest Mario School of Pharmacy, part of Rutgers University in New Jersey, those who exercise regularly and moderately consume coffee develop 62 percent fewer skin tumors than those who don’t.
Another positive effect caffeine has is of an acute antidepressant. Dr. Albert Asherio, cited by Be Youthful, says: “Caffeine is known to affect the brain because it modulates the release of mood transmitters. I’m not saying we’re on the path to discovering a new way to prevent depression, but I think you can be reassured that if you are drinking coffee, it is coming out as a positive thing.” A study in the Archives of Internal Medicine confirms that women who consume up to four cups of coffee a day are 20 percent less prone to chronic depression than the ones who only drink one or less.
Do you drink coffee?