A new study, which appeared recently in PLOS Biology, shows that a physiologically-relevant dose of caffeine protects cardiovascular cells from damage. That dosage amount? Approximately four cups.
Caffeine has long been associated with a reduced risk of Type 2 Diabetes, stroke, and heart disease. However, the link to these diseases was yet to be discovered. According to researchers Judith Haendeler and Joachim Altschmied, a mitochondrial protein, p27, may be the culprit. The protein is known to protect heart muscles from cell death, helping to repair the muscles after a heart attack. This research overturns the assumption that the elderly should avoid caffeine. This and over 100 studies have shown the beneficial aspects of coffee consumption in decreasing the risk of breast, colorectal, colon, endometrial, and prostate cancers.
Another recent study, this time conducted by NIH, showed that coffee consumption is related to a lower risk of all-cause mortality. The sample group included over 400,000 Americans aged 50 to 71. Another multinational study of over 500,000 Europeans confirmed the finding.
Coffee, however, should not be seen as a cure-all. Drinking four cups of coffee every day—the magical number—is not enough to give an individual’s sedentary lifestyle a pass. Regular exercise and a good diet still matter and may indeed be intervening variables in some of these studies. However, the shown statistical significance proves coffee’s ability to improve overall health. If you find yourself needing that fourth cup of coffee to make it to the end of your work day, go ahead and reach for it.
Read the original article at BigThink.
In an interview with Time magazine, form Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz warned that climate change ranks among the company’s biggest challenges. Rising temperatures and lengthy droughts have made it tougher and more expensive to grow the coffee beans the chain needs to remain active. He said that climate change is going to play a bigger role in affecting the quality and integrity of coffee worldwide—not just at Starbucks locations.
At the time of the interview, Schultz was visiting a Starbucks farm in Costa Rica. This particular farm grows and roasts Arabica coffee, but it also serves as an essential research center for the company. It allows Starbucks to study the impact of climate change on growing coffee. Though the research center was built specifically for Starbucks, Schultz wants to share the implications of their data with the world. He says that if the information is not widely spread, there will be “tremendous adverse pressure on the coffee industry.”
The risks climate change poses to coffee are not new. In 2016, a report from Australia-based Climate Institute said the total growing area for coffee worldwide would be cut in half by 2050. A 2017 study published by “Proceedings for the National Academy of Sciences” said the decline in areas could drop even further. It found that certain regions in Latin America could decline by as much as 88 percent by 2050.
Schultz himself, though no longer the CEO of Starbucks, holds the honorary title of chairman emeritus. This designation adds more weight to his statements; no longer the chairman or CEO, he has no responsibility to the company. His words should not be taken lightly by coffee companies and consumers.
Read the original article at USA Today.