This Is Exactly How Much Coffee Is Safe to Drink Every Day, According to Science

Two new studies reveal the benefits and dangers of your cup(s) of joe.

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Many of us can't fully function without a cup of coffee in the morning, but another cup mid-morning, a third at lunch, and a mid-afternoon pick-me-up is another story. Too much coffee can start to cause some serious problems, particularly for your heart. And now, a new study published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition has revealed just how much coffee is safe to drink.

Caffeine is a central nervous system stimulant that helps you stay awake, and, in some cases, even gives you a temporary high. As a result, it's highly addictive and as with other drugs, consuming too much of it can lead to a caffeine overdose. That said, for this new study, researchers at the University of South Australia analyzed data on the coffee-drinking habits of more than 346,000 individuals between the ages of 37 and 73. And they found that those who reported drinking six or more cups of coffee per day had an increased risk of heart disease by 22 percent.

"Coffee is the most commonly consumed stimulant in the world—it wakes us up, boosts our energy, and helps us focus—but people are always asking, 'How much caffeine is too much?'" Elina Hyppönen, the director of the Australian Centre for Precision Health at the University of South Australia Cancer Research Institute and lead author of the study, said in a press release. "In order to maintain a healthy heart and a healthy blood pressure, people must limit their coffees to fewer than six cups a day. Based on our data, six was the tipping point where caffeine started to negatively affect cardiovascular risk."

As with anything, moderation is key—and a more reasonable amount of coffee actually has some health benefits. Another new study published in European Journal of Epidemiology claims that drinking coffee can boost your longevity, but only when consumed in limited quantities. Researchers from Kyung Hee University and Harvard TH Chan School of Public Health looked at 40 previous coffee-related studies, which analyzed more than 3.8 million individuals and 450,00 deaths. They found that "moderate coffee consumption"—which they defined as two to four cups per day day—was "associated with reduced all-cause and cause-specific mortality, compared to no coffee consumption."

So feel free to enjoy that morning cup of joe, just remember to limit yourself! And for more dirt on everyone's favorite breakfast beverage, check out Science Says Drinking Your Coffee This Way Means You're More Likely to Be a Psychopath.

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Diana Bruk
Diana is a senior editor who writes about sex and relationships, modern dating trends, and health and wellness. Read more
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