Coffee can be part of a healthy lifestyle, new studies show

There’s nothing like that first sip of coffee in the morning and two new large studies confirm a few daily cups of the intense brew can be part of a healthy lifestyle.

Drinking coffee — either caffeinated or decaf — was associated with a reduced risk of death when researchers followed thousands of people of different races and people living in different countries in the separate studies, published Monday in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

It’s “premature” to recommend that people drink coffee to live longer or prevent disease, cautioned an editorial in the journal.

Still, it’s increasingly evident moderate daily coffee intake — defined as three to five cups or no more than 400 mg of caffeine — “is not associated with adverse health effects in adults and can be incorporated into a healthy diet,” the editorial notes.

“The key message is that people can drink coffee,” Veronica Setiawan, an associate professor of preventive medicine at the Keck School of Medicine of USC, told TODAY. “It seems there’s no long-term harm.”

“We are always recommending people to avoid doing things… so I think it is very refreshing that we can tell people: If you drink coffee, don’t worry about it — it’s OK,” added Dr. Eliseo Guallar, one of the authors of the editorial and professor of epidemiology and medicine at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.

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