Coffee. The lifeblood of many, if not all, of my mornings. The seemingly boundless source of motivation and creativity. Close your eyes and imagine waking up to the incredible aroma of this beautiful, cocoa-colored elixir. Just thinking of coffee is enough to heighten your senses and get you determining when and where you’ll be able to get your next fix. It’s our social, ritualistic happy-time juice that many of us find pleasure in each and every day. But, is drinking coffee on a daily basis healthy for us?
A recent review of 201 meta-analysis studies found that consuming 3-4 cups of coffee per day was associated with a multitude (11 to be exact) positive health outcomes including cardiovascular disease, cancer, metabolic disease, and even death. These observations are viewed from a very high level, a meta-level, and would need heartier controlled studies to show causation.
What the hell is a meta-analysis?
A meta-analysis is a batch of reviews that combines pertinent data from several studies to come to a conclusion that has greater statistical power. This conclusion is much stronger statically than a single study due to the greater number of subjects, effects, and results. For the coffee data, meta-analyses were used to provide a better understanding of the harms and benefits when they looked at the relative risks, odds and hazard ratios, an relative rates of consuming a few cups of coffee per day.
Sweet.. That still sounds super fluffy. Does this meta-analysis mean I can safety drink 3-4 cups of coffee a day and be good to go? As far as the research is concerned it’s a yes for now.
What these scientists added to what was already known for coffee drinkers:
- “Coffee drinking seems safe within usual patterns of consumption, except during pregnancy and in women at increased risk of fracture”
- “Existing evidence is observational and of lower quality, and randomized controlled trials are needed”
- “A future randomised controlled trial in which the intervention is increasing coffee consumption would be unlikely to result in significant harm to participants”
Seeing as these results were based on a meta-analysis of 201 studies, that is good enough for me. Pour me up a nice, hot cup of Mrs. Brown Eyes and let’s get to work!
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