4 Ways Drinking Coffee May Help You Live Longer, According to a Dietitian
Living a long and healthy life is a wish that many people share. But since we have yet to find the fountain of youth, we have to lean on certain dietary and lifestyle choices to help keep our tickers ticking and our bodies working for a long time.
There are many ways that people may encourage a longer life, including avoiding smoking, participating in physical activity and eating more produce. Less known is that sipping on our beloved morning brew may help us live longer too, which is excellent news for java lovers everywhere.
Nutrients Naturally Found In Coffee
There’s nothing quite like the taste and aroma of a freshly brewed cup of coffee. From the almost-nutty smell a brewed batch gives off to the balanced and distinct flavor your taste buds enjoy when you take your first sip, coffee is one beverage many people enjoy drinking every single day. In fact, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, around 80% of the US adult population reports consuming caffeine daily.
So, what does coffee have that makes it such a healthy superstar? This beverage, made from processed and roasted seeds from the coffee cherry fruit, is jam-packed with good-for-you nutritional features, including antioxidants and certain micronutrients, like magnesium and potassium, all in a low-calorie package. Coffee also contains caffeine, which can contribute to some of the health effects of drinking coffee.
How Coffee Can Help You Live Longer
Drinking several cups of coffee each day could extend your life, per 2018 research published in JAMA Internal Medicine. And even though drinking coffee won’t contribute a significant amount of macronutrients to your diet (assuming you aren’t adding loads of sugar, creamer or other additions), including this low-calorie beverage can have some amazing effects on your health that can help extend your life in impressive ways.
Here are some ways that coffee can positively impact your lifeline.
1. Can Support Weight Loss
If you are carrying more weight than what is ideal for your own needs, you may be at an increased risk of experiencing early death. Along with exercising, eating a balanced diet and prioritizing sleep, including caffeine in your diet may help manage your weight. According to results from a 2019 meta-analysis published in Critical Reviews in Food Science and Nutrition, caffeine intake may help promote reductions in body fat and weight, which may support a healthy weight and ultimately support your overall health.
2. Can Support Heart Health
Heart disease is the leading cause of death in the U.S. And, according to a 2018 review of observational studies and meta-analyses published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, drinking 3 to 5 cups of coffee per day is associated with a 15% reduction in the risk of this potentially devastating disease among healthy people. However, adding sugar and cream to coffee may work against your heart-health goals. Your best bet when supporting heart health is drinking it black.
3. May Reduce the Risk of Type 2 Diabetes
Diabetes was the cause of 1.5 million deaths globally in 2019, according to the World Health Organization. As such, finding ways to prevent the development of this disease may help people promote living a long life.
Data published in 2021 in Nutrients showed that drinking coffee is linked to a reduced risk of type 2 diabetes. Additionally, a 2018 meta-analysis of 30 studies published in Nutrition Reviews supports this claim. This may be due to the fat-burning support coffee offers, as well as its antioxidative and anti-inflammatory effects and microbiome diversity support.
4. May Help Fight Cancer
Cancer is the second leading cause of death in the U.S, and developing it can be caused by several factors, including some that are entirely out of your control (like your family history). But among the many dietary and lifestyle interventions people can take that may decrease their risk of developing cancer, drinking coffee may be one of them.
Data published in 2020 in BMC Cancer shows that drinking coffee may reduce the risk of certain cancers, including liver and endometrial. While drinking coffee won’t guarantee you will live your life cancer-free, it may reduce your risk of developing this condition.
The Bottom Line
Who doesn’t want to live a long and healthy life? While we all know that there is no guarantee, there are some things we can do that may help keep that inevitable occurrence from happening too soon. And if you are a coffee lover, rejoice in knowing that sipping on your favorite afternoon pick-me-up or your must-have perfect morning brew may be just the ticket to helping you live a longer life.
Contributed By Lauren Manaker M.S., RDN, LD, CLEC