Is coffee good for us? A question that has been baffling us for some time with conflicting advice.
According to a recent publication by Annals of Internal Medicine – Moderate Coffee Intake Can Be Part of a Health Diet’ moderate coffee consumption is not associated with adverse health effects in adults and can be incorporated into a healthy diet.
The paper was written by a team at the Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health, Baltimore.
The amount of caffeine in different types of coffee varies and is typically :
· 8 mg of caffeine per fluid ounce of instant coffee
· 12 mg per fluidounce of brewed or drip coffee, and
· 64 mg per fluid ounce of espresso
The research looked at a number of reviews and longitudinal studies across the world.
A recent systematic review concluded that daily consumption of up to 400 mg of caffeine per day in healthy adults (300mg/day for pregnant women) was not linked to acute toxicity, adverse cardiovascular, behavioural, bone and calcium or development and reproductive effects.
Other studies and reviews found that coffee may be associated with lower risk for metabolic syndrome, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and death.
Another study looked at the impact on 520,000 men and women from 10 European counties with an average follow-up of 16 years and found that mortality rates in men and women drinking coffee was higher. This was consistent with a study of 180,000 African American, Native Hawaiians, Japanese Americans, Latinos and whites, also for an average of 16 years follow-up.
This study came to the same conclusion as the European research, and concluded that regardless of ethnicity, people who drank coffee had a higher mortality rate.
Both studies did only report a minor improved mortality rate for coffee drinkers. The studies also found that improved mortality rates were evident only after adjustment for smoking.
The experts do warn about using cream and sugar with coffee because of the additional calories.
The report does also point to other factors that could make contributions to mortality rates: smoking, body mass index, lipid levels and blood pressure.
So are we really any better informed about whether or not to drink coffee? Probably. At least it does not appear to be as bad some health experts have claimed.
There do not appear to be links to heart attacks and other cardiovascular issues. This report was put together by some very clever people so they should know.
With so many people drinking coffee as their pick-me-up to get them going for the challenges of work, can they all be wrong?
The report does state that there is no connection with behavioral development. That depends on what they mean. It’s not really clear. Coffee certainly is a mood enhancer.
Try being in a long meeting where the coffee flows. Conversation can certainly become pacey and people are energetic and think faster than without the stuff.
It would be interesting to know what the experts mean by behavioral development.
The report has certainly sparked a debate about whether or not coffee is good for us.
So, until there is another research report that tell us otherwise, it seems that to live longer, reduce our chances of any cardiovascular diseases drinking between 3 to 5 cups a day could be good for us.
Hooray! Without the cream and sugar.