KEY POINTS

  • Researchers discovered that women who drink 2 to 3 cups of coffee daily have lower body fat
  • The effect was evident regardless of the age
  • They believe that coffee has bioactive compounds that may help regulate weight

Researchers have found evidence that women who drink two to three cups of coffee daily have a lesser total body and abdominal fat than those who drink less. The study has been published in The Journal of Nutrition.

Low Adiposity Level

National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey data were examined by researchers to look at the relationship between abdominal or “trunk” fat (adiposity) and coffee drunk per day. They discovered women 20-44 years old who drank two or three cups of coffee daily had low levels of adiposity, 3.4% lower compared to people who are not consuming coffee.

For those aged between 45 and 69 years old, and have four or more cups daily, they have an adiposity rate of 4.1% or lower. Overall, the average total body fat ratio was 2.8% lower among women who drank two or three cups of coffee daily regardless of age. women who drink 2 to 3 cups of coffee per day tend to have lower body fat women who drink 2 to 3 cups of coffee per day tend to have lower body fat Photo: shixugang - Pixabay

The researchers’ findings were consistent whether the coffee that the women consumed was caffeinated or decaffeinated. It was also consistent among smokers and non-smokers, as well as those suffering from chronic ailments when compared to those in good health. The relationship was not that significant in men, although men aged 20 to 44 years old and who drank two or three cups daily had 1.3% less total fat. They also enjoy 1.8% less trunk fat compared to those who are not drinking coffee.

Bioactive Compounds

According to Dr. Lee Smith, the study’s senior author and Reader in Public Health at Anglia Ruskin University, their research suggests the existence of bioactive compounds in coffee besides caffeine. He theorized that this bioactive compound may have been regulating weight and might be potentially utilized as an anti-obesity compound. “It could be that coffee, or its effective ingredients, could be integrated into a healthy diet strategy to reduce the burden of chronic conditions related to the obesity epidemic,” Dr. Smith said.

The senior author warned, however, that their research was done at a specific point in time, which means trends cannot be established yet. He emphasized the importance of interpreting the findings of their research in light of its limitations. “However, we don't believe that someone's weight is likely to influence their coffee consumption,” according to Dr. Smith.