Both sweetened and unsweetened coffee may help you live longer, study finds

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Are you a coffee lover?

Well, there’s some good news for you. A new study says that adults who drink moderate amounts of coffee—whether it’s unsweetened or sweetened with sugar—seem to live longer.

Specifically, the study found that people who had 1.5 to 3.5 cups of coffee daily were less likely to pass away during a 7-year check-up compared to those who didn’t drink coffee at all.

However, the effects aren’t as clear if you’re putting artificial sweeteners in your brew.

The Coffee Drinking Experiment

Researchers in China looked at data from a big UK health study. They checked out information from more than 171,000 people who didn’t have heart disease or cancer to start with.

These people answered questions about their health habits, including how much coffee they drank and whether they added sugar or artificial sweeteners.

Here’s what the study found:

People who drank any unsweetened coffee were 16-21% less likely to die during the 7-year period.

Those who enjoyed 1.5 to 3.5 cups of sugar-sweetened coffee daily were 29-31% less likely to die during the same period.

The effect was not clear for people who added artificial sweeteners to their coffee.

The researchers pointed out that the folks who sweetened their coffee with sugar only added about a teaspoon per cup on average.

Why This Matters

Until now, most studies about coffee didn’t really differentiate between sweetened and unsweetened coffee, or what kind of sweetener was used.

This study adds another layer to our understanding, showing that the type of coffee—sweetened with sugar, unsweetened, or artificially sweetened—can make a difference.

However, it’s important to keep a few things in mind. The study looked at UK folks where tea is also very popular, so it’s unclear if the same findings would apply in other countries.

Also, the researchers cautioned that the kind of coffee drinks that are popular at coffee chain stores are often loaded with more sugar than what the average participant in this study was consuming.

The takeaway? While coffee in moderate amounts can be part of a healthy diet, going overboard with high-calorie, sugary coffee drinks might not be the best idea. So, go ahead and enjoy your coffee, but maybe stick to a simpler brew.

If you care about nutrition, please read studies about foods that could improve survival in Parkinson’s disease, and vitamin D supplements strongly reduce cancer death.

For more information about nutrition, please see recent studies about plant nutrient that could help reduce high blood pressure, and these antioxidants could help reduce dementia risk.

The research findings can be found in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

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