According to a recent large study which analysed ‘habitual coffee consumption in 398,646 UK Biobank participants aged 37–73 years’.
The study found that “High coffee consumption was associated with smaller total brain volumes and increased odds of dementia”.
In particular, consumption of >6 cups/day was associated with 53% higher odds of dementia compared to consumption of 1–2 cups/day.
A word of caution applies to all ‘food and disease’ association reports. Almost every week there are newspaper reports of studies exploring associations between “various food/drink” with “various diseases”. Some of them are conflicting and confusing with a positive study followed by a negative study !
This study report is no different in that respect.
A previous review published in 2017 concluded that ‘Drinking Coffee was often associated with Health benefits than harm for a range of health outcomes’.
The 2017 review in particular concluded that ‘Coffee consumption reduced risk of Alzheimer’s disease’.
So how to make sense of these two conflicting study reports ?
A 2021 negative report versus a 2017 positive report.
One can look for quality of studies, pedigree of authors and further confirmatory studies .
But there are no easy answers.
Everything in moderation is perhaps the most sensible thing when it comes to Food and Drink.
High coffee consumption, brain volume and risk of dementia and stroke. Nutritional Neuroscience.
An International Journal on Nutrition, Diet and Nervous System. Published online: 24 Jun 2021
Calcification in arteries . . . and other stories
BMJ 2021; 374 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.n1901 (Published 05 August 2021)
Cite this as: BMJ 2021;374:n1901
BMJ. Coffee consumption and health: umbrella review of meta-analyses of multiple health outcomes
BMJ 2017; 359 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.j5024 (Published 22 November 2017)
Cite this as: BMJ 2017;359:j5024
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