How much coffee do YOU drink? Study reveals why some of us need five cups a day while others can manage on one


Your desire to grab coffee from Starbucks could be written in your genes, scientists claim.

New research has found people with a certain variation of a gene don’t need to consume as much coffee to get a caffeine hit – quelling their urge for more.

The gene in question is called PDSS2 – and the variation reduces the body’s ability to break down caffeine – causing it stay in a person’s system for longer.

Those without the variation metabolise caffeine more quickly and as a result, are more likely to have an extra cup each day.

People without a variation in their PDSS2 gene are more likely to have an extra cup of coffee each day, researchers found

Researchers from the University of Edinburgh and the University of Trieste, Italy, studied the DNA of around 3,000 coffee drinkers in the Netherlands and Italy.

Participants were asked to complete a survey about how many cups of the hot drink they had each day.

They found Italian people with the DNA variation tended, on average, to consume one less cup of coffee a day than those without it.

However the DNA difference affected the drinking habits of adults from the Netherlands slightly less.

Experts believe this could be because of the different styles of coffee that are drunk in the two countries.

The genetic variation makes it harder for the body to break caffeine down. This means people with the DNA twist don’t need to consume as much coffee to get a kick, experts say

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In Italy, people tend to drink smaller cups such as espresso, whereas in the Netherlands the preference is towards larger cups that contain more caffeine overall.

Dr Nicola Pirastu, from the University of Edinburgh, said: ‘The results of our study add to existing research suggesting our drive to drink coffee may be embedded in our genes.

‘We need to do larger studies to confirm the discovery and also to clarify the biological link between PDSS2 and coffee consumption.’

The findings were published in the journal Scientific Reports.





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