Drinking up to five cups of coffee a day can lower your risk of heart disease, type 2 diabetes and neurological problems but the benefits have nothing to do with the caffeine.
People drinking that second or third cup of coffee get the same health benefits whether it is decaffeinated or not, suggesting it is the other natural compounds in the drink that may be having the effect.
Bioactive compounds in the drink reduce insulin resistance and inflammation, say researchers from the Harvard T H Chan School of Public Health.
They based their findings on three major studies involving more than 200,000 people. After stripping out other lifestyle factors, such as drinking alcohol and cigarette smoking, found that people who drank between two and five cups of coffee a day were far less likely to develop heart problems, type 2 diabetes, or neurological problems. They were also less likely to commit suicide.
Although the researchers cannot say with absolute certainty that there is a direct cause-effect correlation with drinking coffee, their research adds to the growing number of studies that are coming to the same conclusion about coffee`s health-giving qualities.
(Source: Circulation, 2015; doi: 10.1161/CIRCULATIONAHA.115.017341)