Is Coffee really good for you?

BOTTOM LINE:

  • Overall, drinking coffee is safe!
  • Best benefits at 3-4 cups per day.
  • Decaffeinated coffee similar to caffeinated coffee (for all-cause mortality, cardiovascular mortality, Type 2 Diabetes)

WHY THIS MATTERS:

It seems like there is a new study on coffee every week. Its important to look at what the overall evidence shows.

 STUDY DESIGN

  • Umbrella analysis of:
    • 217 meta-analyses of observational research
    • 17 meta-analyses of randomized controlled trials

KEY FINDINGS

  1. All-Cause Mortality

  • 3 cups/day (caffeinated or decaffeinated) vs none:
    • 17% ↓
  1. Heart Disease

  • 3 cups per day:
    • 19% ↓ Cardiovascular mortality
    • 30% ↓ Stroke
  1. Cancer Incidence

  • High vs. low consumption
    • 18% ↓
  • Any vs. none
    • 13% ↓
  1. Liver

  • Any vs. none
    • Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease: 29% ↓
    • Liver cirrhosis: 39% ↓
  1. Diabetes Incidence

  • High vs. low
    • 30% ↓
  1. Dangers of Coffee

  • High vs. low consumption
    • Pregnancy loss: 46% ↑
    • Low birth weight: 31% ↑
    • First-trimester preterm birth: 22% ↑
    • Second-trimester preterm birth: 12% ↑
    • Third-trimester birth: no association
    • Coffee should be avoided in pregnancy (especially 1st/2nd trimester)

LIMITATIONS:

  • The data is looking at correlations but does not prove causality.

REFERENCE:

Poole, R., et al. (2017). “Coffee consumption and health: umbrella review of meta-analyses of multiple health outcomes.” BMJ 359.

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Sean Hashmi MD
Articles: 56

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