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Coffee may be better for health than previously believed

Friday 24th November 2017
UK scientists have found that people who drink three to four cups of coffee a day may be less likely to develop heart problems. Image: efetova via iStock
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Drinking several cups of coffee a day may be better for health than has previously been believed, according to new research.

Scientists from the University of Southampton have found that consuming three to four cups of coffee each day could in fact have significant benefits for a person's health.

They set out to analyse the findings of 200 previous studies into the health effects of coffee consumption, finding that between three and four cups a day appeared to be the optimal amount of coffee to drink in order to reduce the risk of the development of heart problems, including potentially fatal ones.

What's more, it wasn't just heart problems that regular coffee consumption was found to prevent, but also various types of cancer. Overall, drinking between three and four cups a day was found to be most beneficial for protecting people against the onset of liver disease.

The researchers believe that this may be due to caffeine containing natural antioxidants and anti-fibrotics that can slow down or possibly even prevent damage to cells throughout the body.

However, co-author of the study Professor Paul Roderick explained that the researchers could not categorically say whether or not it was coffee alone that had led to these results.

"Factors such as age, whether people smoked or not and how much exercise they took could all have had an effect," he stated.

"There is a balance of risks in life and the benefits of moderate consumption of coffee seem to outweigh the risks," Professor Roderick added.

Despite the findings, the experts are still recommending that pregnant women do not consume more than two cups of coffee a day, while those deemed to be at higher risk of fractures due to osteoporosis or similar should also continue to limit their consumption.

They also emphasised the importance of people ordering 'healthy' coffees without sugar and with skimmed milk where possible in order to garner maximum health benefits.

Written by Martin Lambert

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