We may not have it all together, but together we have it all.
This morning’s Fort Worth Star-Telegram contained the last—or at least the latest—word in the coffee wars. You know—it’s good for you/it’s not good for you. This report was prepared by Marilynn Marchione for the Associated Press.
Since almost every writer I follow on Twitter lists coffee as a must-have for survival, I thought I’d try to help you out here. It’s important that you know whether you are lengthening your life or destroying your health by imbibing.
First of all, let me qualify a bit. The study did not include people who smoked, were way overweight or diabetic. It tried to eliminate other factors that would affect the longevity of its subjects, so that the only real difference was coffee consumption.
Although the article didn’t specify, I suspect the study group included only real coffee drinkers, not people who drive by Starbucks and get all sorts of goop with little bits of coffee added. After all, we’re trying to study coffee, not milk, cream, sugar and/or whatever other things they insert into that stuff. (Aren’t you guys glad I refrain from letting my opinion interfere with my objectivity?)
One of the basic things they discovered is that caffeine/decaf makes absolutely no difference in life expectancy. Sorta flies in the face of some of the drivel we coffee drinkers have been fed through the years, doesn’t it?
Now that we’ve got the study group down to non-diabetic, semi-healthy skinny people who drink real coffee, either regular or decaf, let’s see what they found. First of all, they found 400,000 people who were healthy enough and skinny enough to fit their group. The gist of the report is that coffee is good for you.
Men who drink one cup a day tend to live six per cent longer than those who don’t drink coffee at all. For women, the figure was five per cent. The strongest effect was for women who drank four or five cups a day—sixteen per cent. But for both sexes, each additional cup per day reduced the number of deaths.
Coffee drinkers were less likely to die from heart or respiratory disease, stroke, diabetes, injuries, accidents or infections. Risk of death from cancer was unaffected.
Now, I’m sure you’re all wondering how to explain the results of this study, so I’m going to help you out with my own very scientific analysis. Since I have an M.S. degree, I feel qualified to interpret for you. Actually, I only have a B.A. in B.S., but through the years I’ve added enough to my knowledge to raise that to M.S.
To understand the analysis, it’s necessary to begin by stating the rather obvious fact that exercise helps one maintain better health and attain greater longevity. I think even those of us who hate exercise can agree on that.
Now, here’s the secret. The more coffee you drink, the more frequently you’re gonna get up from your computer—or television or dinner table or whatever—and trot down the hall to the bathroom. Ergo, the more exercise you get, ergo, the longer and healthier your life.
Aren’t you glad you have me to simplify these deep and murky scientific facts for you? Hold the applause. You don’t need that much exercise if you’re running to the bathroom all day.
Every Wednesday and Friday one of our Life List Club members posts a blog on the LLC Website. Today, Lara Schiffbauer, will post on that site.
After you comment on my post, be sure to come back here and click on the LLC Website so you can read hers also.
David N. Walker is a Christian father and grandfather, a grounded pilot and a near-scratch golfer who had to give up the game because of shoulder problems. A graduate of Duke University, he spent 42 years as a health insurance agent. Most of that career was spent in Texas, but for a few years he traveled many other states. He started writing about 20 years ago, and has six unpublished novels to use as primers on how NOT to write fiction. He is currently putting the finishing touches on his non-fiction Web Wisdom: Godly Thoughts and Inspiration from the Inbox and starting his new fiction work—a series of novellas set during the period from 1860 to 1880.
Contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or tweet me at @davidnwalkertx