Drinking three cups of coffee or more daily could lower the risk of elderly men developing sarcopenia, according to a study by Jeju National University in Korea.
Sarcopenia is an age-related loss of muscle mass and strength. The condition is typically brought on by age-related changes such as decreased levels and sensitivity of anabolic hormones, lack of physical activity, and nutritional deficiencies. The condition is also more common in men than women.
The research, which studied 1,781 Korean men aged 60 and above, found that people who consumed at least three cups of coffee daily showed a 57 percent decreased risk of sarcopenia. The decrease was not significant when daily coffee consumption was one or two cups, which bodes well for those consuming this amount on a daily basis.
Coffee has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties that have been shown to be inversely related to the factors which cause sarcopenia. Moreover, a number of studies have shown habitual coffee consumption is associated with lower prevalence of diabetes or pre-diabetes, insulin resistance, stroke, Parkinson's disease, and cardiovascular disease. There is also evidence that coffee consumption is associated with decreased risks for some types of cancer.
The researchers hypothesised that coffee’s antioxidant properties in particular help to reduce the risk of sarcopenia.