The secret to longevity might lie in your morning order: people who drink coffee daily are less likely to die prematurely, according to a pair of new studies.
In one study, published in the Annals of Internal Medicine, researchers analysed survey data from over 520,000 people across 10 European countries on how often—and how much—coffee they drank, and performed lab work to test them for things like liver and metabolic function, along with heart disease risk.
They discovered that women who drank the most coffee—an average of 855ml (about three and a half large cups) a day—were 7 per cent less likely to die of any cause during the 16-year follow-up than those who didn’t drink any coffee at all.
In men and women, the reduction in premature death seemed to be primarily driven by a sharp decline in the number of digestive-disease deaths, which includes liver-related causes. Women who drank the most coffee were 40 per cent less likely to die of digestive disease over the follow-up than those who didn’t imbibe.
In the second study from the University of Southern California, researchers found that people who consumed one 350ml cup each day slashed their risk of dying early by 12 per cent over 16 years, while three cups reduced the risk by 18 per cent.
Prof Sir David Spiegelhalter from the University of Cambridge calculated that this meant a cup of coffee a day extended the average life of a man by three months and a female by one month.
“Pro-rata, that’s as if that cup of coffee puts, on average, around nine minutes on a man’s life, and around three minutes on a woman's. So perhaps we should relax and enjoy it,” he said.
We'll sip to that.
This article originally appeared on Men's Health