Make mine a venti

The good news for women who drink coffee.

Published June 18, 2008 1:30PM (EDT)

Whoa, how did I miss this report on Monday that coffee may help one live longer? Must have been in line for my morning latte. A recent study, published in the Annals of Internal Medicine, found that drinking up to six cups a day (!) won't shorten your life span -- in fact, regular cups of joe may actually have benefits, especially for women. The study looked at 84,000 healthy women and found, over time:

"Women who drank two or three cups of caffeinated coffee daily had a 25 percent lower risk of death from heart disease during the follow-up (from 1980 to 2004) than non-drinkers. Women also had an 18 percent lower death risk from a cause other than cancer or heart disease compared with non-coffee drinkers."

In my own personal study, I have found that drinking three cups of coffee gives me a 25 percent higher risk of being spastic, jittery and unable to control the tapping of my right leg. But I know plenty people who happily knock back six cups or so, and when everything that feels good seems bad for you, research like this is a little reason to celebrate. However, one doctor warned: "'I think what this study tells us is not so much that coffee is the answer to everything,' he said. But, rather, that some compounds, such as the antioxidants found in coffee, may be healthy."

So now it seems the most dangerous thing about coffee … is the price.

By Sarah Hepola

Sarah Hepola is the author of the New York Times bestselling memoir, "Blackout: Remembering the Things I Drank to Forget."

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