Drinking coffee may just save your life. A new study suggests a person’s chance of death is significantly lower simply by indulging in the popular hot beverage.
Over a 10-year period, researchers followed the health and lifestyle habits of nearly 20,000 people in Spain. Study participants who habitually drank four cups of coffee had a 64 percent less chance of death than those that avoided the beverage.
Even a little coffee helps. Individuals, particularly ones over age 44, who consumed two cups per day lowered their risk of death by 22 percent.
While the study did not definitely establish a link between coffee and longer life, it did agree with research done earlier this year showing that three cups of coffee lowers the risk for heart disease, stroke, and liver disease. Dr. Adela Navarro, lead author of the most recent study, believes the antioxidants in coffee kept the participants alive longer.
“I would advise drink plenty of coffee, it could be good for your heart. I think it’s a good idea to have about four cups a day,” she said, as reported by the Telegraph. “I think it’s the polyphenols [a type of antioxidant], they have an anti-inflammatory effect.”
It is important to note that the study participants were considered healthy when the research began. There was no evidence that suggested drinking coffee would reverse any health problems.
Although drinking coffee is one possible way to reduce the risk of death, it should not be your only health-conscious habit. A healthy lifestyle – eating a balanced diet and exercising – will likely be a more effective path to a longer life than filling up on lattes.