Coffee consumption is associated with lower total mortality, specifically in African Americans, Japanese Americans, Latinos, and whites, according to a study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

Song-Yi Park, PhD, and colleagues, from the University of Hawai’i Cancer Center in Honolulu, and colleagues conducted a population-based cohort study to examine the association of coffee consumption with risk for total and cause-specific death in nonwhites between 1993 and 1996. A total of 185,855 African Americans, Native Hawaiians, Japanese Americans, Latinos, and whites aged 45 to 75 years at recruitment were included.

The researchers found that 58,397 participants died during 3,195,484 person-years of follow-up.  Compared with drinking no coffee, coffee consumption was associated with lower total mortality after adjustment for smoking and other potential confounders (1 cup per day: HR, 0.88; 2 to 3 cups per day: HR, 0.82; 4 or more cups per day: HR, 0.82). Trends were similar between caffeinated and decaffeinated coffee.

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Significant inverse associations were observed in 4 ethnic groups; however, the association in Native Hawaiians did not reach statistical significance. Inverse associations were also seen in never-smokers, younger participants (younger than age 55 years), and those who had not previously reported a chronic disease. Inverse associations were observed for deaths due to heart disease, cancer, respiratory disease, stroke, diabetes, and kidney disease.

“Higher consumption of coffee was associated with lower risk for death in African Americans, Japanese Americans, Latinos, and whites,” the authors concluded.

In a second study, also published in the Annals of Internal Medicine, Marc J. Gunter, PhD, from the International Agency for Research on Cancer in Lyon, France, and colleagues sought to further understand the relationship between coffee consumption and all-cause and all-specific mortality. The study took place in 10 European countries and included participants enrolled in the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition (EPIC).

A total of 521,330 persons were enrolled. During a mean follow-up of 16.4 years, 41,693 deaths occurred. Compared with non-coffee consumers, participants in the highest quartile of coffee consumption had lower all-cause mortality (men: hazard ratio [HR], 0.88; women: HR, 0.93).  Inverse associations were also observed for digestive disease mortality for men (HR, 0.41) and women (HR, 0.60).

Among women, there was a statistically significant inverse association of coffee drinking with circulatory disease mortality (HR, 0.78) and cerebrovascular disease mortality (HR, 0.70), and a positive association with ovarian cancer mortality (HR, 1.31).


  1. Gunter MJ, Murphy N, Cross AJ, et al.  Coffee drinking and mortality in 10 European countries: A multinational cohort study.  Ann Intern Med. 11 July 2017.  doi: 10.7326/M16-2945
  2. Park SY, Freedman ND, Haiman CA, et al.  Association of coffee consumption with total and cause-specific mortality among nonwhite populations.  Ann Intern Med. 11 July 2017.  doi: 10.7326/M16-2472