Here’s a shot of news to perk up your day: Your morning brew may help you live longer, according to a large study published in the journal Circulation. This new finding is just another addition to a growing body of evidence highlighting java’s health benefits. Coffee has been linked to decreasing the risk of stroke, heart diseases, and diabetes; improving penile blood flow; increasing exercise speed and burning fat; and cutting the risk of Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s and multiple sclerosis. There’s also indication that coffee enhances cognitive function and mood when you’re sleep-deprived.
In the new study, people who drank three to five cups of coffee per day were about 15 percent less likely to develop certain diseases—and they tended to live longer. They had lower rates of death from heart disease, stroke, neurological conditions (like Parkinson’s) and suicide. And the health benefits applied whether people drank regular coffee or decaf.
The coffee bean itself is loaded with many different nutrients and phytochemicals, all working together to create these benefits, said co-author Walter Willett at the Harvard School of Public Health. But do note that the study shows an “association,” not a direct cause-and-effect relationship. In an NPR interview, Willett said, “I think if people like coffee, it's fine to include it [as part of your daily habit]. So, certainly, [people] should not feel guilty about moderate coffee consumption. It definitely can be part of a healthy lifestyle. I wouldn't suggest that someone who doesn't like coffee go out and drink it.”
So if you’re a coffee lover, sounds like you have yet another reason to feel energetic about your daily brew.