After years of hearing about the ill effects of coffee, coffee drinkers finally have something to cheer about. A new study has shown that people who drink one to three cups of coffee are protected from heart disease to some extent.
This research was part of the Iowa Women's Health Study and has found that up to 60 per cent of antioxidants which help in the battle against free radicals in our bodies may come from coffee. These antioxidants protect cells from damage and even reduce arterial wall inflammation.
Active parts of coffee, as the researchers claim, contain caffeine as well as polyphenols that are found in red wine which has long been linked to a reduction in cardiovascular disease risk in people who drank one to three glasses of red wine daily.
Data of 27,000 older women, followed for 15 years, has been used for this study. Its results have been published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.
The study found that women who took coffee in moderation had a reduced risk of cardiovascular disease, by about 30 per cent.
As with all things moderation is the key word. Dr Sarah Jarvis, a fellow of the Royal College of General Practitioners said, 'This is a message about moderation. Too much exercise, too much coffee or too much alcohol are bad. In moderation they are beneficial.'