Starting off your day with a freshly brewed cup of coffee might have more benefits than just getting you up and out of bed in the morning. New research by the National Cancer Institute found that coffee drinkers have a lower risk of death compared with those who don’t brew the beans.
The study looked at information in Britain’s U.K. Biobank, a large genetic study that followed nearly a half million people over the course of 10 years. Most of the people who volunteered for the study had different coffee-drinking habits. But whether it was instant coffee, decaf or even Starbucks, those who drank coffee were less likely to die.
The team focused on differences in several genes involved in metabolizing caffeine and found that over 10 years, coffee drinkers were less likely to die than their counterparts. They also found that the amount of coffee consumed did not make a difference. Those who drank eight cups of coffee a day still fared better than those who didn’t drink any. But it’s also important to note that there is no benefit to drinking extra cups of coffee every day.
This study adds to others that speak to the benefits of coffee drinking. Coffee is a powerful antioxidant that can help fight damage to DNA, reduce inflammation and improve how insulin is used. There is other evidence that coffee can help people recover from colon cancer. It might also help protect against diabetes and Parkinson’s disease.
So the next time you find yourself really needing a boost to get through your day, grabbing a cup of coffee might be just the thing for you in that moment — and a healthful habit for the rest of your life.