Scyphus being a forerunner in the UK and EU printed paper cups manufacturing industry, keeps a keen eye on everything that affects their business. Now, since most of their branded paper cups are coffee cups, ordered by the "uber modern" coffeehouses or coffee shops across UK and EU, Scyphus director Leslie Carr writes about the recent changes in perception of coffee as a healthier drink than it was ever thought to be.
University of Southampton’s review demonstrates that coffee cuts the risk of early death
Even if coffee fuels the world, it has been a controversial beverage amongst health-conscious people. However, a fresh review based on more than 200 scientific studies and conducted by researchers at the University of Southampton, outright dismisses these fears. The researchers assert that drinking coffee considerably lowers the risk of early death while offering a whole umbrella of health benefits to consumers. In the United Kingdom, about 55 million of cups of coffee are consumed every day.
The researchers advise three to four cups of coffee a day
The reason that pushed the researchers to dig into the facets of coffee is that it is one of the most consumed beverages in the world, and can subsequently have a significant impact on the health of populations. Data was gathered from various adult populations in all countries and all settings. After assiduous investigations, the researchers of the University of Southampton reached the conclusion that coffee presents a whole array of health benefits for consumers compared to non-drinkers. Their findings were published on November 22.
As the researchers highlight, roasted coffee is packed with more than 1,000 bioactive compounds, some of which have potentially anti-inflammatory, therapeutic antioxidant, antifibrotic, and anticancer effects. When green beans are roasted, they undergo a complex chemical metamorphosis which is further boosted by the methods of preparation to finally influence the biochemical composition in a cup of coffee. The researchers affirm that even seven cups of coffee per day represent a 10% lower risk of all-cause mortality.
However, the maximum benefits are gained when consuming three cups per day; the researchers based themselves on namely two recently published cohort studies. The first one consisted of 521,330 participants observed for a mean period of 16 years, while the second one comprised 185,855 participants for an average period of 16 years.
Coffee protects against several cardiovascular diseases
The research unveiled key findings, particularly regarding cardiovascular diseases. Indeed, the researchers affirm that coffee consumption is persistently linked to a lower risk of mortality from all-causes of cardiovascular diseases. It has an impact on coronary heart diseases as well as on strokes, reducing their risks of occurrence significantly when consumed thrice daily. For non-drinkers, the risk of cardiovascular disease is 16% higher while it soars to 30% regarding strokes. When an extra cup of coffee is consumed, the risk of myocardial infarction is equally diminished.
Cardiovascular diseases account for 45% of all deaths in Europe and globally, it is the number one cause of death, representing 31% of deaths. According to the World Health Organisation, most cardiovascular diseases may be prevented by addressing behavioural risk factors.
Coffee drinkers show a lower incidence of cancer and liver diseases
A meta-analysis of 40 cohort studies furthermore demonstrated a lower incidence of cancer in coffee drinkers. Three to four cups of coffee have been shown to lower the risk of endometrial cancer, prostate cancer, oral cancer, leukaemia, non-melanoma skin cancer, liver cancer, and melanoma.
Apart from liver cancer, the consumption of three cups of coffee has shown to reduce the risk of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease by 29% compared to a person not consuming coffee. While the risk of liver fibrosis is reduced by 27%, the risk of liver cirrhosis is diminished by 39%. An additional cup of coffee has also been associated with a reduced risk of mortality from cirrhosis, renal stones, gout, and gallstone disease.
Liver diseases are considered as the fifth biggest killer in England and Wales and year-on-year, it is still increasing as a major cause of death.
Coffee wards off metabolic disorders
According to the researchers, coffee consumption is intricately linked to the incidence of metabolic disorders. It has been observed that consuming coffee daily reduces the risk of Type 2 Diabetes and metabolic syndrome. Another review conducted by the University of Palermo and the University of Catania published in August 2016, stressed similar benefits. This review equally highlighted the fact that the polyphenols and chlorogenic acids present in coffee have a direct anti-hypertensive effect resulting in considerable improvement in levels of glucose and insulin.
Metabolic syndrome is one of the most feared killers in the world. Referred to as a maladaptation to the modern world, it manifests itself as diabetes, cardiovascular disease, cancers, insulin resistance and obesity. It is viewed as a major clinical challenge.
Coffee keeps off Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s diseases
The review published by the University of Southampton comes to consolidate previous findings of the positive impact of coffee drinking on patients suffering from Parkinson’s disease and Alzheimer’s disease. In 2015, a study conducted by researchers of Harvard University studied the potential anti-Parkinson’s effects initially suggested by Dr Ascherio in 2001. It was proved that drinking four to five cups of coffee per day reduces the risk of developing Parkinson’s disease by almost half, compared to a non-drinker.
The study conducted by the University of Harvard extended over 10 years and consisted of 47,351 men and 88,565 women not suffering from Parkinson’s disease, stroke or cancer at baseline. The findings underlined a positive impact of caffeine on the risk of Parkinson’s disease in both sexes and even showed that for women, an intake of one to three cups of coffee daily proved to be the most beneficial.
Another study published in 2016 by the Institute for Scientific Information on Coffee suggested that consumption of coffee reduces the risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease by up to 27%. The University of Southampton’s review supports the claim, affirming that coffee drinkers have a lower risk of depression and cognitive disorders, especially for Alzheimer’s disease. Alzheimer’s disease is the most common form of dementia and affects 62% of those diagnosed. It has no cure. In the United Kingdom, some 850,000 people suffer from dementia and it is expected that by 2051, over 2 million people will be affected. Worldwide, it is estimated that 46.8 million people suffer from dementia. This figure is predicted to soar to 115.4 million by 2050.
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