It’s traditional to make a toast to the New Year. So today, I would like to toast your good health and share some new findings that support my long-standing recommendation to start the day with coffee.
Many previous studies linked moderate coffee intake to lower risks of developing many common diseases, such as cancer, Type II diabetes and heart disease, as well as neurological conditions such as Alzheimer’s dementia, multiple sclerosis, and Parkinson’s disease.
Despite this ever-growing pile of evidence, mainstream medicine continues to rail against coffee, considering it some kind of “vice.” But hopefully some recent research from Harvard University School of Public Health will prompt doctors to break this bad habit.
This new study shows coffee drinkers live longer and have lower risks of neurological diseases. This research, published in the journal Circulation, adds to the large body of evidence that illustrates the multiple health benefits of coffee consumption.
Of course, it’s really like looking at both sides of the same coin.
Since coffee drinkers are less likely to succumb to nearly all the common diseases that cause death, avoiding those same diseases necessarily leads to living longer. But it’s a big enough finding to do another government-funded study anyway.
Science backs moderation in all things — including coffee
This prospective study involved the best kind of evidence, in which researchers followed more than 200,000 health professionals over three decades. They periodically checked in on the participants to examine lifestyle habits and health problems. During that observation period, 32,000 of the participants died.
Previous studies show a healthy synergy of moderate intake of caffeine (coffee), nicotine (tobacco), and alcohol. But the present study only looked at nonsmokers.
Those who drank three to five cups of coffee per day were 15 percent less likely to die during the study period. Among the heaviest coffee drinkers, at more than 5 cups per day, there was a 12 percent lower risk of mortality
Overall, this evidence shows a few cups of morning coffee support a healthy lifestyle. In other words, moderation in all things, as I have often recommended about what the science is actually telling us.
AHA brews up a big cup of contradictions
Amazingly, experts at the big, non-profit, health bureaucracy, the American Heart Association (AHA) quickly urged caution, “This doesn’t mean you should start drinking coffee in the hopes of getting health benefits.”
But out the other side of their mouths, the AHA experts said, “There’s this lingering idea that coffee must be bad for you because it’s enjoyable. It’s almost like we’ve been trying to find something wrong with it.” Indeed.
These contradictory quotes from the AHA seem to suggest they recognize the bias against coffee. They seem to acknowledge the evidence shows the benefits of moderate coffee consumption. But never mind all that — let’s continue to ignore the evidence and perpetuate the anti-coffee bias by not recommending that people drink coffee.
I repeat my recommendation to start the day with three or four cups of coffee for all the immediate benefits you will feel as well as all the long-term benefits demonstrated by the scientific studies.
I also heard a rumor recently that consuming coffee somehow makes women’s breasts shrink. This rumor probably stems from the old, myth that caffeine contributed to “benign breast disease” or “fibrocystic disease of the breast.”
Our thinking has drastically evolved since then. And I give you all the details about the real causes, prevention, and treatment of breast cancer in the cover story of the January 2016 of my Insiders’ Cures newsletter. (If you’re a subscriber, you can access this issue on my website, www.drmicozzi.com, with your username and password. If you’re not yet a subscriber, now is the perfect time to get started.)
Back to the coffee cup at hand…
Why bother to do studies and why bother to admit prior biases are all wrong, when doctors, scientists, and “experts” refuse to actually recommend the healthy behavior because of the old, discredited bias?
It makes no sense.
As I often say, the mainstream will research everything and anything. But no matter what they find, the answer is always to do more research, instead of actually using the results of that research in the here and now with people who desperately need natural approaches to prevent and treat chronic medical conditions.
Some simple health advice for 2016?
Start the day with a few cups of joe.
“Association of Coffee Consumption With Total and Cause-Specific Mortality in 3 Large Prospective Cohorts,” Circulation 2015 Dec 15;132(24):2305-15