It is amazing when one item is told to have health benefits, only for the next week to discover that it will also kill you. Such is the case with coffee: Recently, we reported that coffee drinkers were half as likely to commit suicide. Of course, now we are hearing that such suicidal tendencies mean little, since drinking too much coffee will in fact kill you anyway, especially if you are under 55. While some people believe that it has to be either something harms you or helps you, coffee proves that it is almost always both.
A long-term study was conducted by members of the University of South Carolina, the Oschner Medical Center in New Orleans, and the University of Bath in the United Kingdom. Titled "Association of Coffee Consumption With All-Cause and Cardiovascular Disease Mortality," it was published yesterday by the Mayo Clinic Proceedings periodical. In it, scientists surveyed more than 40,000 people over the course of three decades, from 1971 to 2002, to determine whether coffee intake affected mortality rate from any cause, and specifically from heart disease.
Upon conclusion of the research, during which time more than 2,500 of those surveyed passed away, the scientists determined that coffee drinkers under the age of 55 that downed more than 4 cups a day, every single day (or more than 28 cups per week), were far more likely to die of all causes of death than non-drinkers and regular drinkers. This was especially the case with men, which had a 32% increase of death from heart disease, and a 56% increase in death from all causes. For women in the age bracket had double the risk of death from all causes.
The reasoning behind this marked increase remains uncertain. While the caffeine in coffee causes changes in the body that are detrimental to one's health, co-author Xuemei Sui pointed out that many heavy coffee drinkers also tend to promote other unhealthy behaviors, such as a bad diet, sleeping late, and not exercising.