Coffee lovers have been given another reason to have another cup with two new international research studies finding the world’s most popular beverage may well prolong life.
But the latest research bodes better for men than women with one study of more than half a million people across 10 European countries finding men who consumed at least three cups a day were 18 per cent less likely to die from any cause than non-coffee drinkers.
Women, on the other hand, drinking the same amount benefited less but still experienced an eight per cent reduction in mortality.
US scientists turned up the same result from their study of 185,855 people from different ethnic backgrounds. They found irrespective of ethnicity people who drank two to three cups of coffee daily had an 18 per cent reduced risk of death. Each of the studies, both published in the journal Annals of Internal Medicine, showed no advantage from drinking either caffeinated or decaffeinated coffee.
Experts believe the antioxidant plant compounds in coffee rather than caffeine are responsible for the life-extending effect. Previous research has suggested that drinking coffee can reduce the risk of heart disease, diabetes, liver disease, and some cancers.
Dr Marc Gunter, from the International Agency for Research on Cancer, who led the European study said: "We found that higher coffee consumption was associated with a lower risk of death from any cause, and specifically for circulatory diseases, and digestive diseases.
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"Importantly, these results were similar across all of the 10 European countries, with variable coffee drinking habits and customs. Our study also offers important insights into the possible mechanisms for the beneficial health effects of coffee."