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article imageSo is coffee good for you or bad for you?

By Tim Sandle     Aug 17, 2013 in Health
Many recent studies have suggested that moderate coffee intake causes no harm (and may cause some good). However, a new study suggests that 'high' coffee consumption can reduce the lifespan.
What the new study has indicated is that heavy coffee drinkers under 55 are more likely to die sooner. For the study, 'heavy' has been defined as those who consume at least four cups a day. This contradicts other studies about the health benefits of coffee (such as helping to overcome depression, helping the liver function better, and in avoiding certain cancers). For example, a May 2012 study published in the New England Journal of Medicine found that coffee drinkers "who drank at least two or three cups a day were about 10 percent or 15 percent less likely to die for any reason during the 13 years of the study.
The recent, contradictory study consisted of around 43,000 participants. The participants were monitored for for 17 years. During that time, around 2,500 people died. After taking several variables into account, the researchers found that men under 55 who drank at least 28 cups of coffee per week were 56 percent more likely to have died during the study than men who drank less. Also. women under 55 were a little more than twice as likely to have died than women who did not drink as much coffee.
However, the causes of death were very varied and there was no common connection (such as heart attack). The scientists are currently considering a genetic link.
Acknowledging that the study results conflict with previous research, Carl Lavie, one of the study’s authors and a cardiologist at Ochsner Medical Center in New Orleans said in a statement: "There continues to be considerable debate about the health effects of caffeine, and coffee specifically, with some reports suggesting toxicity and some even suggesting beneficial effects."
The findings have been published in the journal Mayo Clinic Proceedings. The paper is titled "Association of Coffee Consumption With All-Cause and Cardiovascular Disease Mortality."
Is this latest study conclusive? Not exactly, it only serves to add to the jumble of conflicting results about the health impacts of coffee.
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