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Higher coffee consumption associated with lower risk of early death

By cwan | October 23rd, 2017

Higher coffee consumption is associated with a lower risk of death, according to research presented by researchers from Hospital de Navarra, Pamplona, Spain at ESC Congress. The observational study in nearly 20,000 participants suggests that coffee can be part of a healthy diet in healthy people.

The purpose of this study was to examine the association between coffee consumption and the risk of mortality in a middle-aged Mediterranean population. The study was conducted within the framework of the Seguimiento Universidad de Navarra (SUN) Project, a long-term prospective cohort study in more than 22 500 Spanish university graduates that started in 1999.

This analysis included 19,896 participants of the SUN Project, with an average age at enrollment as 37.7 years old. On entering the study, participants completed a previously validated semi-quantitative food frequency questionnaire to collect information on coffee consumption, lifestyle and sociodemographic characteristics, anthropometric measurements, and previous health conditions.

Participants were followed-up for an average of ten years. Information on mortality was obtained from study participants and their families, postal authorities, and the National Death Index. During the ten-year period, 337 participants died. The researchers found that participants who consumed at least four cups of coffee per day had a 64% lower risk of all-cause mortality than those who never or almost never consumed. There was a 22% lower risk of all-cause mortality for each two additional cups of coffee per day.

The researchers examined whether sex, age or adherence to the Mediterranean diet had any influence on the association between baseline coffee consumption and mortality. They observed a significant interaction between coffee consumption and age. In those who were at least 45 years old, drinking two additional cups of coffee per day was associated with a 30% lower risk of mortality during follow-up. The association was not significant among younger participants.

The take home message is that, with variety of benefits from coffee, drinking coffee each day could be an integral part of a healthy diet.

Thanks for reading.

Dr. Connie Wan

Journal Reference: European Society of Cardiology. “Higher coffee consumption associated with lower risk of early death.” ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 27 August 2017. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2017/08/170827101750.htm>.