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The #1 Best Coffee Habit to Live Longer, New Study Says

It all has to do with how much you should be drinking.
FACT CHECKED BY Kristen Warfield

When it comes to coffee, you might indulge in your preferred brew to benefit from the boost of caffeine or focus on the best coffee recipes for weight loss. At the same time, you might want to incorporate one particular coffee habit into your routine that can actually help you to live longer—and it all has to do with how much you should be drinking.

Three studies set to be presented at the American College of Cardiology's 71st Annual Scientific Session that took a look at data collected from various numbers of participants have all shown that "drinking coffee—particularly two to three cups a day—is not only associated with a lower risk of heart disease and dangerous heart rhythms but also with living longer," according to EurekAlert!

multiple cups of coffee
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"Because coffee can quicken heart rate, some people worry that drinking it could trigger or worsen certain heart issues. This is where general medical advice to stop drinking coffee may come from," explained Peter M. Kistler, MD, professor and head of arrhythmia research at the Alfred Hospital and Baker Heart Institute in Melbourne, Australia, who was a senior author involved in the research. "But our data suggest that daily coffee intake shouldn't be discouraged, but rather included as a part of a healthy diet for people with and without heart disease."

RELATED: The #1 Best Juice to Drink Every Day, Says Science

When it comes to why two or three cups of coffee a day benefits the body, Dana Ellis Hunnes PhD, MPH, RD, senior dietitian at UCLA medical center, assistant professor at UCLA Fielding School of Public Health, and author of Recipe for Survival (2022), tells Eat This, Not That! that there are a number of healthy compounds in coffee that may contribute to this phenomenon.

"Anti-inflammation and plant antioxidants may help boost metabolism keeping weight in check, and inhibit our intestines from absorbing certain fats and block receptors that are involved in abnormal heart rhythms," Hunnes says. "Coffee is also thought to be protective of the liver and [in developing] diabetes."

Of course, while you want to make sure that you're drinking enough coffee to experience positive results, you also don't want to be drinking too much coffee. Hunnes notes that the researchers behind the studies "don't name an unhealthy amount, but since it's a U-shaped curve where benefits curtail after three drinks, probably no need to go beyond that."

Hunnes also says that when it comes to what you might be adding to your coffee such as sugar or creamer, "they will dampen the positive effects of the coffee as some creamers and sugar will contain fats and sugar which are both inflammatory. They probably won't fully negate the healthy effects of coffee, but could dampen it. Black coffee will retain the most benefit."

To find out more about the best kind of brew, be sure to read This Is The Best Coffee In The World, Says Science.

Desirée O
Desirée O is a freelance writer who covers lifestyle, food, and nutrition news among other topics. Read more