For someone who drinks a lot of coffee and writes a lot about aging and living longer I do get that question a lot: does coffee age you?
Before we dive into that (as much as I hate to delay any talk of coffee) if you’re new here make sure you check out the free audiobook on looking 10 years younger. Remember: The body is programmed to self-destruct as we age, but the speed at which it self-destructs is up to us. The quicker you act – the better and I guarantee this (completely free) audiobook will change your life even more than coffee changes your mornings.
Keeping in mind that coffee comes in a lot of different forms these days and there’s a massive difference in a small cup of black coffee and a massive bucket or whip cream covered, sugar loaded whatever. Not that I don’t love my occasional banana flavored mocha – but there is definetly a difference from a health viewpoint.
Good news for coffee drinkers, it does not make you age. The downside is it does promote elevated cortisol levels which are associated with belly fat. Cortisol is always there and necessary for certain functions. I recall years ago that a certain diet limited caffeine intake and the reason cortisol. Another problem with caffeine is that it can cause hypertension. This affects people who suffer from that problem. Enjoy your morning coffee. It’s one of the few pleasures in life we can enjoy with no consequences.
What does make us age is our loss of cells. They can only divide and replicate a fixed number of times then die. As we age we have less cells which results in loose skin, reduced functions and poor health for many. two things responsible for this are telomeres and an enzyme called telomerase.
(Via John’s answer on Quora)
Does Coffee Cause Premature Aging?
Everything is toxic at some level. Including coffee. Including water.
However, the medical evidence suggests that coffee in the usual range of doses is fairly benign and actually tends to be slightly positive healthwise. However, these may be secondary effects of the caffeine: it may make you a little more active and thus fitter. It may also be that the people who like and drink coffee tend to be a bit more active and fit so it is the people, not just the coffee.
Note from the editor: remember the different in correlation and causation here. While the science does say there are potential health benefits to caffeine more active people are already likely drinking coffee which is why a study would show a link between coffee and activity.
If you drink so much coffee that you aren’t sleeping properly, watch out. Sleep is important for mental and physical health. That amount will depend on your liver’s capacity to metabolize caffeine. It is different for different people and different times of life. Babies in particular metabolize caffeine very slowly. In general, liver function decreases with low fitness, excess body weight and aging. Don’t give babies caffeinated drinks and reduce your caffeine intake as your capacity to metabolize it decreases.
Of course, if you react badly to anything you should reduce or eliminate it, or see a doctor depending on the level of the reaction.
Does Tea Age You?
Since I’m British something in my blood told me I’d have to at least touch on tea as well.
It’s perfectly fine for you to drink tea or coffee in the morning and your skin won’t blemish. However, the radiance of your skin is a combination of many factors including your diet, exercise, exposure to harmful environments and genetics. So enjoy your cup of Joe in the morning or Darjeeling, herbal, green tea whatever. Do keep smiling