New research has revealed that despite the myths surrounding perceptions of coffee drinking, it may be more beneficial to our health than we think. The British Coffee Association undertook new market research which uncovered that 74% of coffee drinkers have tried to reduce their consumption as they believe it can be addictive, and 50% of drinkers think it’s dehydrating. These myths have been quashed by scientific evidence, supported by the Foods Standards Agency and the British Dietetic Association, that shows a cup of coffee contributes to your recommended daily fluid intake. It can even protect against cognitive decline and a the development of type 2 diabetes as well as a number of other neurological disorders such as Parkinson’s disease.

“We need to be aware that there are many misconceptions about coffee that are simply not true,” said Dr Sarah Jarvis, GP Richford Gate Medical Practice. “There is strong scientific evidence to suggest moderate coffee consumption (4-5 cups per day) may confer a variety of health benefits and should be enjoyed.”

The research also revealed different drinking habits between the sexes. Men tend to drink coffee at work in order to stay alert, whilst women tend to drink it more when out shopping or socially with friends or family. Coffee is drunk by 72% of the population, and in areas such as the North East, has overtaken tea as the hot drink of choice, in some places being drunk twice as frequently.

Various research has shown coffee can have a protective effect on the liver, and a study published in June this year revealed that women who drank three cups of coffee a day were 25% less likely to die from heart disease. “We need to understand that coffee, in moderation, is perfectly safe for most people,” said Dr Sarah Schenker, dietitian and member of the British Dietetic Association. “Relax and enjoy your coffee!”