01 Jul Why Might Coffee Drinkers Live Longer?
Recent studies uncovered the mechanisms behind the association between coffee drinkers and living longer.
Research has recently revealed that cardiovascular disease in the later years is driven by an inflammatory process. Coffee drinkers reduce this risk since caffeine counters this very inflammatory process.
This research that was spearheaded by Dr. Furman from the Institute for Immunity, Transplantation, and Infection at Stanford University (California), was published it the Journal of Natural Medicine.
It is now confirmed that tea, coffee, soda, chocolate and other energy drinks that contain caffeine not only boost the person mentally every morning but also increase their longevity.
Research on Inflammatory process
In the findings by Dr. Furman, it is clearly stated that caffeine has anti-inflammatory properties that help keep the heart healthier during old age. The research first studied data got from Stanford Ellison cohort, of adults between 20-30 and healthy adults of 60 and above. After analyzing the blood samples of the group they found that in the older group two gene clusters were very active. It was these that were linked to the manufacturing of a circulating inflammatory protein called IL-1-beta.
They divided the subjects based on the basis of low and high gene cluster activity. Out of 23 people that were studied, 11 had low gene cluster activity and 12 had high. Out of the 12, nine had high blood pressure but out of the 11 with low activity, only one had high blood pressure.
So they deduced that out of the older group the ones with high gene cluster activity were at a high risk to have arterial stenosis that is one of the leading causes of heart attack and stroke.
The adults with high activity in the gene cluster had higher levels of IL-1-beta and a higher level of free radical activities (molecules that are uncharged and may cause cell damage), also the presence of nucleic acid metabolites was found in them.
The study found that by incubating an immune cell by two of the nucleic acid metabolites they were able to increase activity in one of the gene clusters which in turn leads to an increase in the production of IL-1-beta. When these metabolites were injected into mice, the mice experienced systematic inflammation and high blood pressure. Also, the increased pressure in the renal area of the rodent increased blocking the kidneys.
Dr. Davis who was a co-senior author on the study (also from the Institute for Immunity, Transplantation, and Infection at Stanford), said that an existing inflammatory process that is related to aging in humans, drives cardiovascular disease and is driven by the molecular activities and events that can be combated and targeted medically.
Further investigation showed that caffeine may help counter the harmful effects of the nucleic acid metabolites. After studying the caffeine consumption of the participants, it was found that blood samples from older adults with low gene cluster activity were more likely to have theophylline and theobromine which are caffeine metabolites.
On incubating the immune cells along with nucleic acid metabolites and caffeine metabolites it was discovered that caffeine metabolites helped prevent the inflammatory effects that were caused by the nucleic acid metabolites.
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