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Excess Coffee May Be Linked To Early Death

Soulskill posted about a year ago | from the not-enough-coffee-may-be-linked-to-early-morning-violence dept.

Medicine 220

Mr.Intel writes "Should we believe it? Those of us under 55 who drink a lot of coffee – more than four cups per day – may be at greater risk of an early death. And not just death from heart problems, but death from all causes. The study, published in Mayo Clinic Proceedings (abstract), followed people for almost two decades, and found that in both sexes, younger people were more likely to die of anything than people who drank less."

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220 comments

Juan Valdez (2)

ackthpt (218170) | about a year ago | (#44585945)

Must be spinning in his grave ... oh wait...

Re:Juan Valdez (4, Funny)

Jeremiah Cornelius (137) | about a year ago | (#44586413)

People who drink more coffee also have more sex.

It's the sex that kills 'em off. But what a way to go! Buzzed and polished.

Re:Juan Valdez (4, Insightful)

mcgrew (92797) | about a year ago | (#44586713)

I should be dead, because I've been drinking a whole pot every day for over 40 years. But then, I'm in the middle of few Bell curves.

Perhaps there's no causation behind this correlation? Perhaps what kills you isn't the coffee (like you said humorously) but substituting coffee for sleep? If a and b or correlated, sometimes the causative factor is c which triggers both a and b.

I drink a lot of coffee, but I also sleep 7 to 9 hours a night. This needs further study.

eh (3, Funny)

O('_')O_Bush (1162487) | about a year ago | (#44585951)

Good thing they invented Redbull

RIP Mr. Intel (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44585959)

He died suddenly shortly after submitting this article.

In lieu of flowers, contributions can be sent directly to the EFF.

causation versus correlation (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44585961)

if you are the kind of person who drinks that much coffee...

anyway it's not clear that coffee is the problem

Re:causation versus correlation (5, Informative)

ackthpt (218170) | about a year ago | (#44586005)

if you are the kind of person who drinks that much coffee...

anyway it's not clear that coffee is the problem

Doesn't matter in the market, though, expect Starbucks stock to dip on the news. Wait for it to go to a sufficient low and buy, because caffeine addicts will rationalize their fear away (the way smokers are real pros at) and be back in two shakes of a lamb's tail.

Re:causation versus correlation (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44586107)

Starbucks stock didnt move on the news. Any other advice?

Re:causation versus correlation (1)

ackthpt (218170) | about a year ago | (#44586199)

Starbucks stock didnt move on the news. Any other advice?

Either coffee drinkers are more bound to their daily dose or quicker on the uptake of rationalization than Krispy Kreme fans, when the word got out that donuts can make you fat.

Or people are more conscious of how they appear than how they feel about early onset of bucket kickin'

Re:causation versus correlation (2)

compro01 (777531) | about a year ago | (#44586277)

Actually, it appears SBUX peaked around 11am (about when the Forbes article went up if I'm right about the timezones), then dropped until about an hour ago, and is now going back up.

Probably just a coincidence though.

Re:causation versus correlation (3, Insightful)

idontgno (624372) | about a year ago | (#44586547)

Stop considering taking stock tips from random slashdotters. Not even as a joke.

That's almost worse than trolling "Ask Slashdot" for career advice.

Re:causation versus correlation (4, Interesting)

cusco (717999) | about a year ago | (#44586211)

Most shocking thing to me is that 4 cups of coffee a day is considered "a lot of coffee". Of course I live in Seattle so my view may be a bit skewed.

Re:causation versus correlation (2)

ackthpt (218170) | about a year ago | (#44586303)

Most shocking thing to me is that 4 cups of coffee a day is considered "a lot of coffee". Of course I live in Seattle so my view may be a bit skewed.

There are Cups and there are Cups. Starbucks coffee, even just the straight stuff I baffle people with (when I endeavour to slum) is far more potent than the stuff I make when at the office or camping. I thin it out pretty good (you can actually see through it) and sip it, rather than wrap my mouth around the cup and tilt my head back with a sound like a toilet bowl draining.

Perhaps there's something like a Caffeine Molarity to be considered.

Re:causation versus correlation (3, Funny)

h4rr4r (612664) | about a year ago | (#44586325)

Why would you ever want to thin it that far?

I find Starbucks coffee already too weak. I want a fork to stand up in the coffee, ideally.

Re: causation versus correlation (2)

ackthpt (218170) | about a year ago | (#44586597)

We keep the 16 M coffee under the hood. Be sure to wear gloves and goggles when handling.

Re:causation versus correlation (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44586219)

The stock market does not work that way.

Stock prices are affected by emotion more than logic.

The big people who buy/sell enough to actually affect the stock price are not necessarily the majority of people who drink caffeine in the Venn diagram here.

No justification is required or needed.

Re:causation versus correlation (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44586393)

I dunno. Bought some Herbal tea in a common grocery store. The real stuff. Yeah, the last two days have been hell, but I'm thinking it's a detox process so it should go over pretty soon (I'm otherwise from drinking a lot more coffee the last two years, living a pretty healthy lifestyle).

When I say hell, I mean it: Not just headaches, but hypertension and dizzyness. Calling in sick (I didn't need one sick leave in two years, so it's up by quite alot of % here ;-).

I need to go out more for walks, but that's about it. Oh yeah, and the Herbal tea, it was really good.

Let's face it: What I need is hydration, not coffeine giving a false stimuli causing me to overdo things and cramp up trying to finish everything. Hydration will do many more wonders in the long run, while coffee, like smoke, just seem to give a buzz the first couple of cups. It's not even a buzz anymore, just a bit sickening in the stomach.

It's my choice. After reading so many studies stating coffee is good for you, and having tried it alot the last two years, I'm ready to go all Herbal (the REAL stuff).
Your choice may be different, and I fully respect that.

Re:causation versus correlation (1)

pr0fessor (1940368) | about a year ago | (#44586689)

I like the commercials where they say cigarettes have urea which is found in cat pee. All I can think is, you mean they use the same fertilizer they put on all those vegetables you eat?

{don't get me wrong there is no smoking in my house but those commercials are silly}

Re:causation versus correlation (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44586051)

Totally agree.

I drink a lot of coffee, but it's probably the whole 75 hour work weeks that lead me to do so that are the problem (and the associated lack of sleep and terrible diet).

Re: causation versus correlation (1)

ackthpt (218170) | about a year ago | (#44586657)

Could also be pesticides. Gotta keep those Peruvian Coffee Weevils at bay.

Re:causation versus correlation (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44586461)

I drink therefore I... damn

Life without coffee? (4, Funny)

Hatta (162192) | about a year ago | (#44585967)

Why would you even want that?

Re:Life without coffee? (4, Funny)

RobinH (124750) | about a year ago | (#44586267)

I always love the "for the price of a coffee a day" arguments about how little it costs to start saving. What are my savings goals, though? I guess to retire, so I can go down to the local coffee shop every morning and enjoy a coffee. Oh wait...

Re:Life without coffee? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44586419)

how do you save when you cant afford the coffee?

Re:Life without coffee? (4, Insightful)

CastrTroy (595695) | about a year ago | (#44586773)

This is why I just make my coffee at home. Even if you use really good beans, Even if you buy really expensive beans (fresh roasted and all that) you can still make a cup of coffee at home for under 50 cents. If you buy cheaper coffee it can be made for under a quarter. When they say "for the price of a coffee a day" they are usually referring to a coffee you buy from a coffee shop. Somewhere around $2. So if you make it at home, you can have your cake and eat it too. Save the money, and still drink your coffee.

Re:Life without coffee? (1)

Yetihehe (971185) | about a year ago | (#44586283)

I don't believe in life before coffee.

Correlation not cause (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44585973)

Possible correlation to people who drink a lot of coffee and people who work crazy hours/lots of stress/not much sleep/eat poorly/etc..

My excessive coffee drinking is a symptom of my shitty lifestyle.

Re:Correlation not cause (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44586015)

Combine that with a steady supply of a hot, tasty vasoconstrictor and perpetually, artificially elevated heart rate and yeah, you're setting yourself up for a rough time.

Re:Correlation not cause (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44586537)

Hmm, I'm a heavy drinker (certainly well over 4 cups), yet my resting heart rate is in the 40's. Rule #1: Cardio.

Re:Correlation not cause (3, Interesting)

ackthpt (218170) | about a year ago | (#44586033)

Possible correlation to people who drink a lot of coffee and people who work crazy hours/lots of stress/not much sleep/eat poorly/etc..

My excessive coffee drinking is a symptom of my shitty lifestyle.

I was a serious caffeine addict for the better part of a year, while putting in 14-16 hour days - yeah, I think the lack of sleep alone, plus the spice of stress, was doing quite a bit of damage. Now I only have a little now and then, preferring tea. Life is better.

Re:Correlation not cause (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44586115)

[Not a statistician or researcher, so I may be using the term wrong, but..]

I think it might be called "selection bias"--you make seemingly arbitrary distinction between two groups (coffee vs non-coffee), and you find a statistically significant difference between the two. The distinction is real, but the underlying cause may not be directly related to your initial cut.

Possible correlation to people who drink a lot of coffee and people who work crazy hours/lots of stress/not much sleep/eat poorly/etc..

It would make more sense to think the shitty lifestyle leads to drinking more coffee, as you say. But, there are lots of coffee drinkers out there, so the headline is sure to pull in eyeballs for advertisers...

Re:Correlation not cause (2)

Sique (173459) | about a year ago | (#44586165)

And? No one ever said there was a causal connection between the two. Just a link - a co-relation, as you called it.

And yes, there are many possible root causes for the link. One you already cited: Living excessive is connected to both early death without a dominant cause, and excessive consumation of certain products.

Re:Correlation not cause (2)

liquidsin (398151) | about a year ago | (#44586215)

My excessive coffee drinking is a symptom of my shitty lifestyle.

My excessive coffee drinking is the cause of my awesome lifestyle. You're doing something wrong.

Re:Correlation not cause (1)

Khashishi (775369) | about a year ago | (#44586243)

I think that's at least partly causative. The coffee enables people to work the crazy hours.

Fits the data (2)

DaveAtFraud (460127) | about a year ago | (#44586349)

Possible correlation to people who drink a lot of coffee and people who work crazy hours/lots of stress/not much sleep/eat poorly/etc..

My excessive coffee drinking is a symptom of my shitty lifestyle.

There probably is a strong correlation between younger people who drink a lot of coffee and have an unhealthy lifestyle. Supposedly the researcher corrected for smoking but not for things like too little sleep, too much stress, etc. (Been there. Done that.) If that describes you and you survive into your 50s, chances are that your lifestyle gets healthier but you still have the coffee habit and then the health benefits of coffee consumption kick in. (There now. Doing that.)

I'm down to only about 5 mugs a day which is better than when I was an undergrad (mid 1970s) and drinking 10 to 15 mugs a day.

Cheers,
Dave

Re:Correlation not cause (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44586423)

Let me guess: Coffeine doesn't affect your brilliant mind and body at all?

Then why do you use it?

Re:Correlation not cause (1)

cciechad (602504) | about a year ago | (#44586711)

It depends on your genes. There are different caffeine metabolization genes depending on which you have caffeine may be significantly worse for you. https://www.23andme.com/health/Caffeine-Metabolism/ [23andme.com]

Re:Correlation not cause (1)

DerekLyons (302214) | about a year ago | (#44586741)

You can drink a lot of coffee and work regular forty hour weeks and have a fifteen minute or less commute too. (I know half a dozen people like that.)

Uh oh (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44585977)

I only started drinking coffee about 4-5 years ago because there was a great Saeco machine at work. Now I have my own machine at home and I easily drink 5-6 espressos a day. It has no effect on me I can drink them all in a row and go to bed. Sometimes I wonder if there isn't something wrong with the machine.

Re: Uh oh (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44586049)

When puke up you rotten burned out kidneys and drop dead, you'll see the effects.

I'm worried! (5, Funny)

skade88 (1750548) | about a year ago | (#44585983)

Death from all causes is the leading causes of death for people under 55.

Re:I'm worried! (3, Funny)

localman57 (1340533) | about a year ago | (#44586147)

Agreed. And fully half of those people die younger than the median mortality age in that group.

Re:I'm worried! (2)

sgage (109086) | about a year ago | (#44586279)

Thank the godz I'm over 55!

Re:I'm worried! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44586501)

Death never killed anybody. Stopping breathing did though

Not always... (1)

gnushell (195014) | about a year ago | (#44585999)

I turn 55 next month and drink insanely strong coffee and have been doing so since I was 15. Just sayin'.

Re:Not always... (3, Funny)

localman57 (1340533) | about a year ago | (#44586161)

Huh. You know how you can take your social security earlier in exchange for a smaller monthly payout? Take a good look at that.

Well, I am 53... (3, Funny)

Skiron (735617) | about a year ago | (#44586001)

...and doubt I ever have drunk 53 cups of coffee as I am English, and TEA is the way. So bring on 55 - (forget the fags I smoke and Beer I drink ;) )

Re:Well, I am 53... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44586305)

Damn, Slashdot really is for old people, two 50 year olds in a row and I'm 30...where do all the young nerds chill at? REddit? oh fuck no not gonna do it.

Re:Well, I am 53... (3, Funny)

h4rr4r (612664) | about a year ago | (#44586357)

In American English your comment is very funny. You mention forgetting homosexuals, but you drink tea. I know what you meant, but man you are a bunch of Nancies.

Re:Well, I am 53... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44586605)

Says the nation whose beer is famous for being for pussies

Re:Well, I am 53... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44586739)

We import Boddingtons for a reason!

Re:Well, I am 53... (2)

h4rr4r (612664) | about a year ago | (#44586809)

Says the guy who has not tried out modern beer.

is this really a correlation? (1)

intermodal (534361) | about a year ago | (#44586007)

This seems like it might be a single element that has little to do with the coffee itself. Despite the study's findings, this is far from a guarantee that the coffee itself was the cause. It could well be that dying and coffee are both attributable to somethign else they had in common. Perhaps it would be better to look at what the common thread between the coffee drinkers studied. especially the ones who died.

Where did those studies go .. (1)

roguegramma (982660) | about a year ago | (#44586041)

.. of a lower incidence of prostrate cancer in anyone drinking more of anything, including coffee? http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23702886 [nih.gov]

Re:Where did those studies go .. (1)

localman57 (1340533) | about a year ago | (#44586171)

Prostrate cancer? What is that, like a benign tumor or something?

Re:Where did those studies go .. (1)

ilguido (1704434) | about a year ago | (#44586207)

Man doth not die by prostate cancer only etc. etc.

Re:Where did those studies go .. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44586291)

The great thing about quoting 'studies' is that you can almost always find one that shows exactly the opposite of what the new one says.

This is because so many of them are bogus make-work for otherwise unemployable science grads.

Obviously... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44586057)

This is just because the coffee drinkers are living life faster than you "normals."

Did they look at other habits too? (1)

XxtraLarGe (551297) | about a year ago | (#44586065)

I only scanned TFA, and didn't see it. My guess is it's probably because people who drink 4+ cups of coffee also have other habits that are bad for their health. I typically drink 3 cups a day, but it wasn't unusual for me to drink a whole pot a day when I was younger. I also ate lots of junk food, was overweight and didn't exercise on a regular basis, and would get maybe 4 hours of sleep a night. I'm still overweight, but I've greatly reduced my junk food consumption & exercise on a regular basis now and get 6-7 hours of sleep a night, so I need less caffeine to make it through the day.

Re:Did they look at other habits too? (1)

ZombieBraintrust (1685608) | about a year ago | (#44586131)

They looked at smoking. When they controlled for smoking the risk went down some.

Re:Did they look at other habits too? (1)

TheCarp (96830) | about a year ago | (#44586385)

As should be expected, smoking nicotine increase the rate at which the body eliminates caffiene, actually cuts the average plasma half life in half. This means smokers, who have a higher than average likelihood of early death, who drink coffee, can be heavier coffee drinkers easily.... leading to a bit of a selection bias if they didn't controll for it.

Re:Did they look at other habits too? (2)

Samantha Wright (1324923) | about a year ago | (#44586133)

"However, after stratification based on age, younger (28 cups per week) and all-cause mortality after adjusting for potential confounders and fitness level (HR, 1.56; 95% CI, 1.30-1.87 for men; and HR, 2.13; 95% CI, 1.26-3.59 for women)."

I believe the standard next step is to assert that they couldn't have possibly checked for all possible correlated variables, and hence all studies are meaningless. If you're into that sort of thing.

Make up your mind, dammit! (5, Insightful)

JustAnotherIdiot (1980292) | about a year ago | (#44586073)

Sometimes they say coffee is beneficial [slashdot.org] and helpful. [slashdot.org]
Or even sometimes they say it actually lowers the risk of death. [slashdot.org]

Other times they say it's horrible [slashdot.org] and should be avoided. [slashdot.org]
Can you please make up your minds already? |:

Re:Make up your mind, dammit! (3, Insightful)

GLMDesigns (2044134) | about a year ago | (#44586405)

It's the inane hyperbole of science reporters that make the situation worse. Reporting and sensationalizing science news without taking things into context creates this yo-you effect. (As with most /.ers I did not RTFA so I'm assuming basic competence in the original study.)

Re:Make up your mind, dammit! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44586493)

Well, correlation does not necessitate causation. Even if it did, it could have some positive benefits while being negative overall. For instance, of course you're less likely to get Alzheimer's if you're going to die earlier.

may be? (1)

ionymous (1216224) | about a year ago | (#44586087)

That was true before the study.

Correlation equals Causality (4, Funny)

tie_guy_matt (176397) | about a year ago | (#44586127)

Every good junk scientist knows that correlation always equals causality. I am a member of the junk scientists world club. We meet every year. Everyone flys to the west to get to our meeting so that no one will end up flying off the end of the earth. Correlation equals causality is thesis of every speach. So it can't be that people addicted to coffee might be more likely to be addicted to something else as well. If coffee is correlated to death then coffee must cause death!

Oh Shit (1)

Murdoch5 (1563847) | about a year ago | (#44586129)

As a guy who can drink 2L of coffee a day that is scary.

I Drink Three Cups Daily (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44586141)

But, they are all four-shot latte's, so I'm safe.

How big are the cups? (1)

Traciatim (1856872) | about a year ago | (#44586149)

Did they mean 4 cups as in 4 250ml units of coffee... or 4 cups as in 4 actual sized coffees available at retailers that are generally 3 measured cups for the large or extra large sizes that seem so popular?

Re:How big are the cups? (2)

sgage (109086) | about a year ago | (#44586361)

That is a good question. In the US, most coffemakers are graduated such that a cup is 6 US ounces (an official cup being 8 ounces). I drink 2 good-sized mugs of coffee every morning, which is about 4 coffeemaker cups, so about 3 official cups.

But I am over 55, so I have nothing to worry about. :-)

Thinly disguised non-story (1)

melonman (608440) | about a year ago | (#44586153)

They make this claim in the first paragraph and then spend the next four pages pointing out that they didn't check lifestyle, didn't distinguish caffeinated and decaff and that half a dozen other studies have shown health benefits of drinking coffee, and conclude by saying that health experts are not putting coffee on any lists for lack of hard evidence.

Should we believe it? (1)

frovingslosh (582462) | about a year ago | (#44586159)

After so many studies lately that talk about the benefits of drinking at least two cups of coffee a day, it's nice to see a study come out that not only seems to refute this but assaults common sense. Drink a lot of coffee? Then you're more likely to die in an industrial accident. Then you're more likely to die in a shooting. Then you're more likely to did in an airplane crash! Drink a lot of coffee and your odor will apparently provoke more deadly shark attacks. Drink a lot of coffee and you're more likely to die in your sleep. Drink a lot of coffee and you're more likely to die of old age. Of course you should believe it, this was a study done by professionals and you know how honest and reputable such research always is.

Not surprising (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44586183)

It tastes like fucking shit, so it isn't surprising. Mother Nature tries to warn you. The fact that it tastes like a dead fetus dredged through elephant shit and then drenched in donkey semen should be a sign we shouldn't drink it.

Re:Not surprising (1)

mdenham (747985) | about a year ago | (#44586287)

I assume you take your dead fetus dredged through elephant shit drenched in horse semen instead, then.

Re:Not surprising (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44586371)

It tastes like fucking shit, so it isn't surprising. Mother Nature tries to warn you. The fact that it tastes like a dead fetus dredged through elephant shit and then drenched in donkey semen should be a sign we shouldn't drink it.

Don't matter if it gives the buzz, I guess...

Bloody Confounded Epidemialogical Studies! (1)

TechyImmigrant (175943) | about a year ago | (#44586189)

This study tells you nothing useful. How much more confounded can you be than with the lifestyle choices that associate with coffee drinking?

Blown up coffee shop (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44586225)

How frequently do Coffee Shops blow up? That might correlate more random deaths with heavy coffee drinkers

Dup comment (2)

tool462 (677306) | about a year ago | (#44586265)

I may have to repost my old comment in every coffee story that makes it to the front page. It always seems to apply. http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=2899159&cid=40234945 [slashdot.org]

It's not that caffeine causes us to die early, caffeine dilates time itself. We live a lifetime of productive bliss in only a few moments. Why else do non-coffee drinkers never appear to age? In what feels like 60 years for us, only a short time passes for them. They look younger because they are younger. But, they also live long enough to get Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, cancer. In a twist of irony our lives are shorter but our years are longer. We looked to the internet for the Singularity, but we should have looked inside. The Singularity is us.

those who don't drink coffee (2)

OglinTatas (710589) | about a year ago | (#44586273)

Those who don't drink coffee are more likely to die in their sleep.

In other news... (1)

rwven (663186) | about a year ago | (#44586293)

Excess leads to death. As if, yakknow, we all didn't know this already.

Dying young but also crawling out of the casket (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44586313)

The future dead will be crawling out of their casket seeking for more coffee as it's a natural bodily instinct for them so their bodies can still function without their brain.

It didn't take long to figure this out (1)

hyades1 (1149581) | about a year ago | (#44586315)

TFA says, "...may be at greater risk of an early death. And not just death from heart problems, but death from all causes..."

This is obviously because people who drink more than four cups of coffee a day are awake and actually doing things. People who don't are sleeping their lives away, all safe and tucked away in bed. And except for that poor bastard in Florida who got eaten by the sink hole, remarkably few healthy people die while they're peacefully snoring away in their own bed.

QE-frickin'-D.

Looks like Mormons were right about everything (0)

elabs (2539572) | about a year ago | (#44586327)

Fresh fruits & veggies, whole grains, no smoking or chewing tobacco, eating meat sparingly, one by one all of the health guidelines outlined by the LDS Church in the 1800's have been adopted by modern health advocates. Finally the ban on coffee joins the list.

The candle which burns twice as bright... (1)

Overzeetop (214511) | about a year ago | (#44586343)

Fuck that - life without coffee isn't really life, amiright?

May as well ask me to give up bacon.

Where's the breakup of causes of death? (1)

gwstuff (2067112) | about a year ago | (#44586345)

It's really weird that there is no breakup of the causes of death. The study (linked in the article) says 32% of the deaths were from heart disease. In the study, the graph measuring the correlation between coffee drinking and incidence of heart disease cannot be accessed.

This makes it really hard to derive any meaning out of the study. Does drinking excessive coffee make it more likely that you'll walk into a manhole, or to have car accidents?

The irony (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44586365)

Nobody here having the trait being studied (i.e. drinking more than four cups of coffee a day) will actually read TFA. So those making the usual uninformed rants about the study methodology will all be on the same side of the debate :)

Running out of hearbeats (1)

T.E.D. (34228) | about a year ago | (#44586375)

Two decades or so ago, I read an article in Scientific American that bascially said biological organs have a maximum "cycle duty". In other words, humming-bird hearts and human hearts get pretty much same number of beats before they wear out, but since their hearts beat 1260 times a minute [wikipedia.org] instead of 70, they only live 5 years [wikipedia.org] instead of 90.

Now, this is clearly a simplistic view of anatomy. However, if he's onto something, then you'd expect people who regularly raise their heart rates (eg: with large daily caffine intakes), to live a bit shorter lives than everyone else on average.

Re: Running out of hearbeats (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44586721)

Would that also apply to people that exercise regularly?

Re: Running out of hearbeats (1)

Anonymous Codger (96717) | about a year ago | (#44586811)

No, because if you exercise regularly your resting heart rate will be lower, which presumably will compensate for the higher rate during exercise (I exercise a lot, and my resting heart rate is 49 bpm - a real athlete's rate will be even lower).

I know I'm pissing into the wind, but... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44586377)

"Correlation does not imply causation."

But, it seems our whole "scientific" (and I am using that term very loosely at this point) process revolves around that easy-to-fall-for fallacy.

Show me the causal relationship between "excess coffee" and "early death," and I'll give a shit about your study.

Contradicting studies (3, Interesting)

LateArthurDent (1403947) | about a year ago | (#44586379)

As soon as I read the headline, I was reminded of an earlier slashdot article [slashdot.org] from last year.

In the linked NIH study, drinking 3 or more cups of coffee a day was associated with a lower risk of death. From all causes. This study is probably a follow up to the earlier study, and they came to the opposite conclusion.

Conclusion: not enough studies to change your daily habits one way or another. Obligatory xkcd [xkcd.com]

This just in... (4, Funny)

new death barbie (240326) | about a year ago | (#44586487)

Coffee drinkers studied by Mayo Clinic scientists have a greater chance of dying than NIH coffee drinkers.

Large cup size? (1)

Camel Pilot (78781) | about a year ago | (#44586403)

Since there is no legal "standard" coffee cup does the study define a cup? Could be anywhere from 5 ounces to 8 oz.

Obvious conclusion: (2)

Hartree (191324) | about a year ago | (#44586421)

Bad for those under 55 years old, huh?

So, you're saying I only have to survive 4 more years until it starts being good for me?

That's why it's called EXCESS (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44586455)

Excess of anything can kill you, cause early death, generally do bad things.

Excess coffee causes early death?! (1)

mistaryte (2446492) | about a year ago | (#44586519)

The hell you ... ACK GURGLE

I'm in denial (1)

BenSchuarmer (922752) | about a year ago | (#44586607)

(sip) It must be (sip) bad science (sip) or something (sip).

Excess Posting Of Comments To Slashdot (1)

Ukab the Great (87152) | about a year ago | (#44586651)

"has been linked to an early d....ACK, GAG" (thud).

What does this phrase mean? (1)

Control-Z (321144) | about a year ago | (#44586671)

"younger people were more likely to die of anything than people who drank less." ???

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