Food and Behaviour Research

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10 July 2017 - Nutraingredients - Coffee and anti-ageing: Consumption 'contributes to the prevention' of age-related diseases

Cheryl Marie Tay

Coffee consumption has been shown to offer anti-ageing benefits and contribute to improved insulin resistance, according to new research from Japan.

Coffee consumption has been shown to offer anti-ageing benefits and contribute to improved insulin resistance, according to new research from Japan.

The study, conducted by the Tokyo Metropolitan Institute of Gerontology and the Tokyo Medical and Dental University, investigated lipid metabolism, energy metabolism and locomotor activity in aged mice that had been fed either regular or decaffeinated coffee.

The mice who had consumed regular coffee saw their locomotor activity and energy expenditure, alongside their food and water intake, increase. Other positive effects of caffeine on the mice included “improved insulin resistance” and “enhanced grip strength of skeletal muscles”.

On the other hand, regardless of whether they had consumed regular or decaffeinated coffee, adenosine triphosphate (ATP) levels — associated with anti-ageing — in the mice’s livers increased, while their plasma-free fatty acid levels decreased.

Ageing benefits

Regarding the possible effects of regular coffee consumption on humans, the study stated that caffeine provides “protection from fatty liver disease” and that “coffee polyphenols are known to have antioxidant activity that prevents the oxidation of DNA, proteins and lipids”.

It added that, based on the results of previous related studies, coffee consumption has proven beneficial in numerous ways for older people when it comes to ageing or age-related diseases: “Coffee attenuated the fibrosis of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, heavy coffee intake decreased the risk for severe depression in middle-aged men”, and drinking three to four cups of coffee a day “decreased mortality by 24% for 40- to 69-year-old Japanese” people. 

All this points to coffee having “substantial anti-ageing effects that contribute to the prevention of age-related diseases”.

The study concluded that “the present results contribute to an improved understanding of coffee’s anti-ageing potential".