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Dec 17, 2015 10:48 PM EST

Coffee intake linked to lower risk of death


A 10-year U.S. study has revealed that people who people who drank coffee were less at risk to die of many causes, as compared to those who didn't drink coffee at all, Fox News reports.

"Coffee contains numerous biologically active compounds, including phenolic acids, potassium, and caffeine," said lead author Dr. Erikka Loftfield of the National Cancer Institute in Rockville, Maryland.

For the study, the researchers used data from a previous study on 90,317 adults without cancer or history of cardiovascular disease who were followed from 1998 through 2009.

The participants reported their coffee intake, along with other dietary and health details, at the start of the study.

The more coffee, including decaf, study participants consumed, the lower their risk of dying.

By 2009, about 8,700 people of the participants had died. The researchers found that coffee drinkers were less likely to have died during the study than nondrinkers.

"Although coffee drinking has also been inversely associated with incidence of certain cancers, like liver, in epidemiological studies, we did not observe an association between coffee and overall cancer mortality," Loftfield said. "This may be because coffee reduces mortality risk for some cancers but not others."

The study found that people who consumed two to three cups of coffee per day had approximately an 18 percent lower risk death compared to those who reported drinking no coffee. The risk of death was lowest for those who drank four to five cups of coffee per day. 

"There is an accumulating number of studies of very high quality that show that people who drink more coffee tend to have better health outcomes," said Dr. Marc J. Gunter of Imperial College London, who was not part of the new study.

"Coffee drinking is correlated with other health behaviors," and those who drink it regularly may have other healthy habits, like exercising and keeping to a healthier diet, though the researchers tried to account for those other factors, Gunter told Reuters Health.

The study doesn't prove that coffee extends life.

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