Cheer Up With Java

Coffee, the new health elixir? Maybe not, but more studies suggest you can get health benefits from that stimulating beverage.

Women who drink caffeinated coffee may be less prone to depression, for example, according to data collected from the long-running Nurses’ Health Study from the Harvard School of Public Health. For several years, the experts examined the diets of more than 50,000 women with an average age of 63. Those who consumed two to three cups of caffeinated coffee a day had a 15 percent decreased relative risk for depression compared with women who drank a cup or less a week. Drinking four or more cups a day resulted in a 20 percent decrease. (Researchers found no link between decaffeinated coffee and depression risk.)

In addition, coffee may help you reduce your risk of endometrial cancer, according to a study recently published in Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention. Drinking more than four cups of coffee a day was linked to a 25 percent lower risk of endometrial cancer, according to experts at the Harvard School of Public Health, who also used data from the Nurses’ Health Study. These benefits were seen with both decaffeinated and caffeinated coffee, which is rich in antioxidants.