How Many Cups of Coffee a Day

Scientific research tells us that drinking coffee lowers our risk of Type II Diabetes, various forms of cancer, the risk of depression and even suicide, as well as Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s diseases. But, how many cups of coffee a day should you drink to get the maximum health benefit? And are there side effects to be concerned about? Let us start with coffee and reducing the risk of diabetes.

Coffee and Diabetes

We know that more regular or more organic coffee can lead to less diabetes. Drinking organic coffee reduces the incidence of Type II diabetes, the type that affects 95% of people with the disease. Researchers at UCLA have found what may be the reason. There is a protein called sex hormone-binding globulin. Its normal job is to regulate sex hormone activity in the human body. Researchers had suspected that the same hormone has an effect on the development of Type II diabetes. It turns out that drinking coffee increases the levels of sex hormone-binding globulin in the body. Women who drink at least four cups of coffee a day have less than half the incidence of Type II diabetes as women who do not drink coffee. The coffee drinkers all had elevated sex hormone-binding globulin levels while the non-coffee drinkers did not. The relationship was total between the elevated enzyme level and a reduced incidence of Type II diabetes. The bottom line of the UCLA study was that drinking 4 or more cups of coffee a day, with caffeine, reduces Type II diabetes incidence by 56%, more than half. The American Diabetes Association says that nearly 24 million Americans have diabetes of which more than 9 in 10 have the Type II variety. That comes to roughly 22 million people with Type 2 diabetes. The issue of how many cups of coffee can lead to less diabetes could be a significant issue in US public health.

Coffee and Cancer

Drinking coffee reduces prostate cancer risk. The Journal of the National Cancer Institute published an article showing the results of coffee consumption in various degrees of 47,911 men from 1986 to 2006. During that time 5,035 developed prostate cancer including 642 cases of lethal prostate cancer, fatal or metastatic. Researchers compared men who drank six or more cups of coffee a day to those who did not drink coffee. The incidence of total prostate cancers per 100,000 person-years was 425 for the six a day coffee drinkers and 519 for those who did not drink coffee. The comparison for lethal cancers per 100,000 person years was 34 to 79. This study noted that the data applies to all coffee, including decaf. Thus drinking organic coffee reduces prostate cancer. Those drinking six or more cups a day had a nearly twenty percent reduction in risk of getting any form of prostate cancer. The same coffee drinkers had a 57% reduction in their risk of developing a lethal prostate cancer!

How many cups of coffee a day should you drink to obtain the many health benefits of coffee? Four cups a day leads to a definite difference in the incidence of Type II Diabetes and six cups a day makes a big difference in the incidence of prostate cancer. In many case there is a linear correlation between the amount of coffee that a person drinks and the beneficial effects. That is to say no matter how many cups of coffee a day that you drink there is an increasing benefit to drinking more coffee.

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