Daily Cup Of Coffee Could Help Elderly Americans Avoid Death

Coffee 051712 17May12

There may be a link between coffee consumption and longer lifespan for those over 50, a new study published this week in the New England Journal of Medicine says.

Researchers at the National Institutes of Health reviewed health records of 400,000 healthy adults between the ages of 50 and 71 for 13 years.

Over the course of the study, 13 percent of the participants died. Those who drank the most coffee, however, were the least likely to die. Drinkers of six or more cups of coffee a day were 10 to 15 percent less likely to die than those who drank no coffee at all.

"There has been some concern coffee might increase the risk of death, and this provides some reassurance against that worry," Neal D. Freedman, lead researcher from the NIH, said.

When looking at individual cases, this lowered risk may seem insignificant, but researcher Susan Fisher from the University of Rochester Medical Center said it could have greater implications when spread on a broader scale.

"Even a small decrease, when you're talking about a [behavior] that is so ubiquitous across the human population, could mean many, many lives saved," Fisher said.

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