PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Coffee lovers make a joyful toast because two new studies suggest that a cup of joe does a body good.
“I love coffee! I drink coffee way too much,” said Mariam Mosinyan, who is among millions (62 percent of Americans) who drink coffee every day.
Two new studies say drinking coffee, whether regular or decaf, is associated with a lower risk of death, especially when it comes to cardiovascular and digestive track diseases.
“Before today, I was thinking about cutting back…but that’s not going to be the case anymore,” Mosinyan said.
The studies also show antioxidants found in coffee have a protective effect on the body.
Professor Elio Riboli, head of the School of Public Health at Imperial College London said there are “lower markers of inflammation” and “better markers of liver function” with those who consume more coffee.
In one study, researchers examined data from more than a half-million people from 10 European countries and they found people who drink one cup of coffee a day are 12 percent less likely to die than non-coffee drinkers.
In addition, people consuming two to three cups a day reduce their chances of death by 18 percent.
A second study shows the benefits appear to be the same for people of all ethnic backgrounds.
Wendy Setiawan, an epidemiologist and cancer researcher, said, “Until now, there’s no data in non-whites showing protective associations between coffee and death rates and I think it’s really important to show in nonwhite populations, who we know have different lifestyles, different disease risks, if we can see similar associations.”
The benefits of coffee were found no matter how it’s prepared, filtered or boiled.
“I like the taste; it wakes me up,” Gian Keys said. “So, I guess I should drink more, right?”
Doctors say it’s important to remember that caffeinated coffee is a stimulant, which can interfere with sleep and cause stomach trouble for some people . But if you don’t have that sensitivity, the researchers say this proves that 3 to 5 cups a day can be part of a healthy diet.
The findings are published in the Annals of Internal Medicine.