Two new studies on the health benefits of coffee say that your morning caffeine boost doesn’t just get you through your workday. It might actually be much more helpful, by lowering your risk of developing cancer, heart disease, and diabetes.
The two studies published on Monday in the Annals of Internal Medicine found that people who drank more coffee – even decaf coffee – had a lower chance of an early death.
Research teams from the National Cancer Institute, University of Southern California, and University of Hawaii studied the coffee drinking habits of more than 180,000 Americans as part of the Multiethnic Cohort Study, which has been observing many of the study’s participants since 1993. It’s one of the most diverse studies going right now, and includes subjects of African American, Latino, Native Hawaiian, and Japanese heritage.
Those who drank two or more cups of coffee per day were 18 percent less likely to have died during the study period than the 16 percent of participants who had never drank coffee. Even those people who drank less coffee – anywhere from one to six cups of coffee per week – were 12 percent less likely to die.
Then the researchers looked at the 10 leading causes of death in America (which of course included things that coffee has no effect on like pneumonia or accidental deaths): Apparently, the more coffee you drink, the less likely you are to die from heart disease, kidney disease, and cancer – drinking coffee even lowers your risk of having a stroke
The second study looked at more than 500,000 European people in 10 different countries including the United Kingdom, Spain, Greece, and Norway. These participants were also tracked for around 16 years.
Taking into account outside factors like smoking, researchers found that the men and women who drank the most coffee in each country were 12 percent and 7 percent, respectively, less likely to suffer an early death.
The researchers insist that “moderate coffee intake,” is part of a healthy diet, and that coffee does not necessarily prevent chronic diseases, so these studies aren’t license to live off coffee. But if you enjoy a cup of coffee everyday, you might want thank your barista (or your coffee machine): It's a habit that could, in the long run, save your life.
Of course, drinking Hawaiian coffee - and having Maui Wowi DC bring it to you in DC, MD or VA with coffee catering packages - could make you and your guests live even longer, but that's just the feedback we get from everyone loving their "foo foo" coffee drinks.
This article was originally published in Food & Wine