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Coffee Habits That Are Shortening Your Life, According to Science

We turned to research to learn which coffee habits need a kick to the curb.
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We'll put it to you plainly—there are a lot of health benefits to drinking coffee on a regular basis. Coffee can actually do wonders for your body, and can even help you lose weight. But if you're not careful with your coffee habits, that magical cup of joe may actually be having negative effects. This is why we turned to the research to learn the coffee habits that are shortening your life. Here they are, and for more healthy tips, be sure to check out our list of The 7 Healthiest Foods to Eat Right Now.

1

You're drinking too much coffee.

Man barista making coffee latte
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This one may be obvious, but it's a coffee habit worth noting. One previous study that evaluated 40,000 adults noticed that drinking over four cups of coffee a day could actually have negative effects on one's lifespan. However, the scientists that authored the study did note that having 28 cups a week is fine (exactly 4 cups each day of the week), but drinking more of that could result in negative consequences in terms of longevity.

Here's why Drinking This Many Cups of Coffee Per Day Is Bad For You, Experts Say.

2

Your coffee order is drowning in sugar.

Barista adding flavored syrups for coffee
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Have you ever actually looked at the nutrition information of that caramel latte you love to order? If you're ordering a large caramel latte at your favorite coffee shop, you're likely consuming at least 30 grams of sugar at once—sometimes more for shops like Starbucks or Dunkin'.

Studies have shown that eating too much sugar can lead to an early death. And no, it's not due to obesity or weight gain, but the fact that sugar can cause dehydration which can be a symptom of high blood sugar and, if not monitored, a risk of diabetes.

Instead of ordering a sugary latte, why not ask for a regular latte with a small caramel swirl on top? You can mix in the caramel and still get that same great taste, but with significantly less sugar. Or why not make one of these 12 Tastiest Homemade Coffee Drinks From a Nutritionist.

3

You're adding too much creamer.

Coffee creamer
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Similar to your sugary latte, if you're not careful with your creamer, your coffee at home will also be drowning in sugar. Choosing to use a half-in-half or a little milk, or even almond milk, would be a better choice than a sugary coffee creamer. However, if you prefer a sweeter coffee taste, simply be careful at measuring out the amount of coffee creamer you put in your cup.

4

You're not embracing a little caffeine.

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Seems a bit counterintuitive, right? But it's true! One study published by the journal Longevity & Healthspan says caffeine can actually help extend your life span, improve your health, and delays age-associated diseases like Alzheimer's. That's because caffeine can actually help with dietary restriction and reduced insulin signaling.

Just be careful of how much caffeine you consume! Healthline says consuming over 1,000 milligrams of caffeine a day can cause negative effects on the body including increased anxiety, insomnia, and digestive issues. Here's Exactly How Much Caffeine Is Too Much Caffeine.

5

You're not drinking it at all.

refusing coffee
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As we said, there are actually quite a few benefits to drinking coffee on a regular basis—even in terms of longevity! According to the AARP, coffee drinkers have a lower risk of death compared to coffee abstainers by 10 to 15%. So maybe it's time you start brewing yourself a cup in the morning.

And once you start drinking coffee, here are the 9 Tricks for the Best-Ever Cup of Coffee.

Kiersten Hickman
Kiersten Hickman is a senior editor at Eat This, Not That!, specializing in recipe development, food, and diet coverage. Read more
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