Although many people are intoxicated by the mellow taste of coffee, there are still many people who find it difficult to adapt to the taste of coffee and add a large amount of sugar to temper the taste. And this brings up a new question: Does coffee with added sugar pose health risks?
It is well known that moderate amounts (40 to 300 mg) of caffeine reduce fatigue, increase wakefulness, and shorten reaction times. It may also improve people's alertness during long work hours where arousal levels are low (such as working on an assembly line, driving long distances, and flying airplanes). However, considering the high caffeine content in coffee, many people are still concerned about whether long-term coffee intake will bring about some accumulation effects and thus unpredictable risks.
To this end, in July 2020, the top medical journal NEJM published a review article "The Relationship between Coffee, Caffeine and Health", which demonstrated in detail the physiological and toxic effects of coffee and caffeine, their correlation with the risk of chronic diseases, and the importance of drinking by pregnant women Coffee precautions and other issues. The review points out that there is substantial evidence that drinking coffee does not increase the risk of cardiovascular disease and cancer.
In September of the same year, researchers from the National University of Singapore published an article in NEJM confirming that drinking coffee may be closely related to a reduced incidence of liver cancer. Prospective cohort studies suggest that caffeine in coffee may prevent liver fibrosis by acting as an adenosine receptor antagonist because adenosine promotes tissue remodeling, including collagen production and fibrin production. Consistent with this, caffeine metabolites can reduce collagen deposition in liver cells, caffeine inhibits liver cancer development in animal models, and a randomized trial shows that drinking caffeinated coffee reduces liver collagen in patients with hepatitis C. level. Additionally, coffee polyphenols protect against hepatic steatosis and fibrosis by improving fat homeostasis and reducing oxidative stress.
In June 22, a study published in Annals of Internal Medicine by the team of Professor Mao Chen of Southern Medical University answered this question. The research team collected 171,616 participants from the UK Biobank, none of whom had cardiovascular disease or cancer at the time of enrollment, and used a health behavior questionnaire to record their coffee consumption.
After analyzing all the data, the study concluded that moderate drinking of sugar-free or sweetened coffee, that is, 1.5-3.5 cups per day, can reduce the risk of cancer and cardiovascular disease death.
It is worth mentioning that in this study, the need to drink coffee in moderation was also emphasized. Sugary coffee drinkers only drink an average of 1.1 teaspoons of sugar (approximately 5 grams) per day. Calculated based on an average of 2 to 3 cups of coffee per day, the average sugar content per cup of coffee is less than half a spoon, which is much lower than the sugar content of specially prepared coffee sold on the market. More importantly, the researchers found that when participants drank >4.5 cups of sweetened coffee per day, the risk of death increased by 5% compared with those who did not drink coffee.
The right amount of coffee also has a huge impact on health. So, what is the optimal amount of coffee to drink?
Fortunately, numerous health studies can also answer this question. Regarding the standards for moderate coffee application, in 2022, researchers from the Harvard School of Public Health released their opinions in Nature Reviews Cardiology after analyzing some of the latest scientific evidence. The article believes that for most people, it is safe to consume no more than 400 mg of caffeine per day. And according to epidemiological studies, if you drink 2 to 5 cups of coffee a day, this moderate amount is generally a relatively healthy lifestyle.
It should be noted that coffee is not suitable for everyone, and some special groups must be careful when drinking coffee. For example, the daily caffeine intake of pregnant women should not exceed 200mg (<2 cups), otherwise it will increase the catecholamine levels in the blood of pregnant women and fetuses, which will cause uterine and placental vasoconstriction and hypoxia, endangering the life of the fetus; patients with osteoporosis are advised to 1 Do not exceed 3 cups a day; adults with grade 2 or 3 hypertension also need to reduce their coffee drinking, especially try not to drink coffee in the morning to avoid a sudden increase in blood pressure.