Thursday, November 19, 2015

Hu said coffee is good for you?

Everyone's got a deal, and here is mine: It's just like the weather...if you hear something is bad for you, wait ten minutes and someone else will come along and tell you it's ok.

Red meat bad!  No, red meat is ok as long as you don't grill it! Wait a while; red meat is ok but chicken is bad and eggs are worse!  Undercooked pork used to be bad and we were told we'd get lockjaw, and maybe some of us should have, but trichinosis turned out to be less of a threat to us than slipping on banana peels, which was a staple of cartoon fun, but you never saw it happen to anyone in real life.

And now, for those who were told that coffee and its caffeine would send you to the Pearly Gates Starbucks way too soon, you can sip easily. Harvard University did a study and they say that coffee drinkers are likely to live longer.  They followed 200,000 java junkies for almost 30 years and find that those who guzzled 3 to 5 cups per day had a lower mortality rate - up to 15 percent lower! - than those who made do with Postum or water or whatever.

Frank Hu, M.D., Ph.D., M.P.H, is the author of the study, and he says the reason for this kick in the years is a powerful antioxidant called chlorogenic acid, which is super abundant in coffee.

Dr Hu also says that those who average swallowing half a Big Box of Joe from Dunkin Donuts are 37 percent less likely to die from a neurodegenerative disease such Parkinson's, and 36 percent less likely to die from suicide, compared to nondrinkers.

Insert obvious joke about people who can't get their coffee fix ending their lives way too soon...

Dopamine seems to be the key here...all that coffee produces a ton of dopamine for you, and a large feature of Parkinson's is a lower level of dopamine, the chemical that plays a large part in both animal and plant lives. And plenty of dopamine means plenty of nerve transmitters in your brain, and that produces an antidepressant effect. And that's a good thing.

Dr Hu did not answer the puzzling question about what would happen to a person who drinks coffee while listening to Adele. For some, that's really having it all!

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