This story has been getting a lot of “buzz”! Sorry for the pun, but many news outlets are reporting that even 25 cups of coffee daily is fine for your heart. One thing for sure is that the authors of the study know how to grab a headline! First, let’s review the limitations of the conclusion that 25 cups of coffee a day is okay. The study was presented at a meeting and despite all the allusions to the study, I can’t find the study itself anywhere online. Also, because it was presented at a meeting, it has not been peer reviewed or published in any journal. That having been said, let’s see what they did. British researchers out of Queen Mary’s studied over 8000 Brits who self reported their coffee consumption. They were broken down into less than 1 cup a day, between 1 and 5 cups, and 5 up to as many as 25 cups a day. Without the study to look at, people more familiar with the raw data suggest that very few percentage of people reported drinking 25 cups. Most of the heavy coffee drinkers drank about 5 cups. All of these people had MRI studies of their heart. What they found is that over all ranges of coffee consumption, the heart didn’t falter. It would be nice to know exactly the age range that was studied. If it were all 30 year olds, it proves nothing other than young people are healthy.
This is good news. The benefits of coffee are well established. Coffee drinkers have less risk of depression, suicide, and gallstones. It isn’t the caffeine, but likely the antioxidants in coffee. It is comforting to know that drinking crazy amounts of coffee still doesn’t bother the heart. However, drinking that much coffee says something about your mental health I think. So the news isn’t that we should drink that much coffee, it’s just that if you drink coffee, don’t worry about it. It’s fine and probably beneficial. If you don’t drink coffee, I don’t understand you.