It turns out that drinking a few cups of coffee every day can do more than give you a boost at work, it can even help you live longer.
Two to three cups of coffee a day are associated with greater longevity and a lower risk of cardiovascular disease, found a new study published in the European Journal of Preventive Cardiology. These benefits were seen regardless of whether the coffee had caffeine or not, or whether it was ground or instant, according to an analysis of the habits of nearly 450,000 people.
“Ground, instant, and decaffeinated coffee were associated with equivalent reductions in the incidence of cardiovascular disease and death from cardiovascular disease or any cause,” said study author Peter Kistler. “The results suggest that light to moderate intake of ground, instant and decaffeinated coffee should be considered part of a healthy lifestyle.”
The study specifically looked at the link between light coffee consumption and cardiovascular problems, including coronary heart disease, congestive heart failure and ischemic stroke. Participants were free of these diseases at baseline, and the researchers asked them how much and what type of coffee they drank each day, if any.
The researchers followed the participants for an average of 12.5 years.
During this time, cardiovascular disease was diagnosed in more than 43,000 participants, 9.6% of the total. The researchers found that those who drank two to three cups of coffee a day had the lowest risk of developing the disease, and those who drank ground, instant and decaffeinated coffee saw a reduced chance of 20%, 9% and 6 %, respectively.
Another 30,100 people were diagnosed with arrhythmia. While ground and instant coffee were associated with a lower risk of this development, decaffeinated coffee did not help, the researchers found. Unlike other areas, drinking even more coffee made a difference for this condition, with those who drank four to five cups a day seeing the lowest risk. Those who drank two to three cups also saw a significantly lower risk.
By the end of the study, 27,809 (6.2%) of the participants had died. However, it found that all types of coffee were linked to a reduction in death from any cause, with two to three cups a day associated with the greatest benefits. Ground, decaffeinated, and instant coffees were associated with a 27%, 14%, and 11% lower likelihood of death, respectively.
Kistler said that while caffeine is the most well-known aspect of coffee, it likely isn’t the reason for the drink’s life-saving abilities. Coffee has more than 100 biologically active components, he said.
“It is likely that non-caffeinated compounds were responsible for the positive relationships observed between coffee consumption, cardiovascular disease and survival,” he said. “Our results indicate that drinking modest amounts of coffee of all types should not be discouraged, but can be enjoyed as a heart-healthy behavior.”
This study adds to previous research that coffee, especially several cups a day, has.
A 2018 study found that over a 10-year study period, coffee drinkers were about 10%than those who did not drink coffee. Another, published last year, found that drinking three to four cups of coffee, regardless of whether it has caffeine, reduces the risk of developing and dying from guilt. .
Editor’s note: This story and headline have been updated to more accurately reflect the results of the observational study.