More on caffeine (or 'What nurses know already')

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A new study shows that women who regularly drink caffeinated coffee have a 20% lower risk of depression than nondrinkers. This fresh-brewed research, published in a recent issue of The Archives of Internal Medicine, analyzed data on nearly 51,000 women who took part in the famous Nurses' Health Study.

By the way, does “Nurse's Health Study” mean that nurses were the ones studied because we already know that caffeine makes us VERY happy? Just watch how much coffee we drink in a day.

This study showed that the likelihood of depression fell with each additional cup of coffee, in this case up to as many as six cups a day. Just 6 cups? Ha! Amateurs!

Now what is also interesting to me is that previous research has already shown that the risk of suicide decreases with increasing coffee consumption. OK, so this is how my twisted brain works: I can envision it now … we see one of those directfs-to-consumer advertisements. We get to the part where the voice-over announces, “Drug X may cause feelings of suicidal ideation or action. If you have these feelings, call your doctor immediately.” (OK, so all I can think of is, when? Call your doctor, but before you jump off the bridge or leave a note? As usual, I digress …)

But now we can add, “Drug X may cause feelings of suicidal ideation or action. If you have these feelings, just drink 6 cups of coffee!”

In the editor's note that accompanied the study, the main researcher was quoted as saying that this was an important contribution because, to his knowledge, this was the first large-scale study of coffee consumption to evaluate a mental health outcome in women.

Really, does anyone need to study that? Just ask my husband about my mental state before I have my coffee in the morning!

Just keeping it real,

Nurse Jackie

The Real Nurse Jackie is written by Jacqueline Vance, RNC, CDONA/LTC — a real life long-term care nurse who is also the director of clinical affairs for the American Medical Directors Association. A nationally respected nurse educator and past national LTC Nurse Administrator of the Year, she also is an accomplished stand-up comedienne. She has not starred in her own national television series — yet.

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The Real Nurse Jackie

The Real Nurse Jackie is written by Jacqueline Vance, RNC, CDONA/LTC, a 2012 APEX Award of Excellence winner for Blog Writing. Vance is a real life long-term care nurse who also is the director of clinical affairs for AMDA - The Society for Post-Acute and Long-Term Care Medicine. The opinions supplied here are her own and do not necessarily reflect those of her employer or her professional affiliates.

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