NCA Update: 2020 US Dietary Guidelines Scientific Review

Setting the stage for the next evolution in dietary guidance to Americans for 2020-2025

Editor’s note: The connection between lifestyle and health is increasingly being recognized by the medical and scientific communities. We know that diet, exercise habits, and smoking and alcohol consumption impact our health. And as the science continues to advance, it seems there are new discoveries weekly.

To help Americans make healthy food and beverage choices, the U.S. Government issues Dietary Guidelines, which in the past have been communicated by USDA guides such as the Food Guide Pyramid and MyPlate.

When the USDA last undertook this exercise, the NCA formally recommended that the healthy aspects of coffee be recognized – and they were.  The 2015-2020 Guidelines acknowledge that coffee can be part of a healthy diet.

And the process to update these guidelines is now well underway.


By Dr. Mark Corey, Director of Scientific & Government Affairs, National Coffee Association

Over the past two days, I attended the meeting of the 2020-2025 Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee (DGAC) in Washington, DC, focused on creating the protocol and guidelines shaping US nutrition and guidance to Americans for the next 5 years.

Panels of experts are examining every aspect of the American diet, inside and out, and have outlined their process for evaluating the science-based evidence. Subcommittees are focused on a range of topics such as dietary patterns and looking across different age groups from birth to older adults.

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What the Research Really Shows on Coffee & Cancer

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Coffee may lower the risk of several types of cancer, according to recent studies reviewed by researchers at the American Cancer Society.

The following excerpt was originally posted at the American Cancer Society

AICR has named February Cancer Month. Learn more

To learn more about science, coffee, and why the research matters, join the experts from the NCA Scientific Leadership Council for “The Coffee Science Fair: A Fun Look at a Serious Topic,” a special educational session at the NCA 2019 Convention in Atlanta, GA on March 8.


Scientists have been investigating the links between coffee and cancer for decades. And while our understanding of coffee’s potential health benefits has improved with advances in research, there’s still more to learn.

In 2016, an expert panel convened by the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) — the arm of the World Health Organization that is responsible for assessing whether certain substances cause cancer — could not conclude that drinking coffee is carcinogenic based on the current evidence available.

Yet the coffee-cancer connection has recently reappeared in the news, due to the ongoing Prop 65 legislation in California to put misleading “cancer warning labels” on coffee.

So, what do coffee drinkers need to know?

In following interview written by Elizabeth Mendes, American Cancer Society researchers Susan Gapstur, PhD, and Marjorie McCullough, ScD, explain what the studies really show when it comes to coffee and cancer, and discuss what other research is still needed.

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Coffee and Cigarettes: Misinformation By Algorithm

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Despite overwhelming scientific evidence, popular myths on coffee and health continue to persist.

By Kyra Auffermann, NCA Digital Content & Communications Manager


Coffee plays an important role in the lives (or at least mornings) of most people — in the United States, nearly 80% of all adults drink coffee, typically at the start of their day.

Yet most coffee drinkers don’t have a good understanding of coffee: the plant, the way it is processed, or the precision of a “perfect” roast.

In fact, more coffee drinkers may have a good misunderstanding of coffee. And despite overwhelming evidence, myths persist — particularly when it comes to coffee and health.

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How This Coffee Roast May Protect Your Brain

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Both caffeinated and decaf coffee showed the protective effect against cognitive decline

Drinking coffee has previously been linked to a reduced risk of Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases. Now, scientists may be closer to understanding why.

New research from the Krembil Research Institute examines how coffee helps protect against long-term cognitive decline  — and it turns out that the roast might matter.

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A “Common Sense” Victory For Coffee Science in California

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“Call it a victory for science — or maybe just for common sense.” – The Seattle Times


It was a good news week for  coffee science in California.

Earlier this month, OEHHA (the state’s Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment agency) proposed a plan that would exempt coffee from Prop 65 required “cancer warning labels” in California after the most recent ruling in the ongoing legislation.

The statement was met with resounding support from scientists and coffee lovers alike.

“OEHHA’s Rulemaking is supported by both the full weight of scientific evidence and law,” wrote William “Bill” Murray, NCA President and CEO, in comments filed Aug. 30. The letter commended the decision and laid out the strong case for coffee in a scientific summary signed by Dr. Mark Corey, NCA’s Director of Scientific & Government Affairs, and Dr. Alan Leviton, Consultant to the NCA Scientific Advisory Group.

Simply put, the research speaks for itself: coffee does not cause cancer.

Then this week, in a groundbreaking announcement, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration sent a letter to Sacramento which emphatically set forth their support for this rule.

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Reading the Coffee Coverage: Longevity

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What’s right, what’s wrong, and what’s interesting.

The following article is based on this LinkedIn post by William (Bill) Murray, NCA President & CEO 


When it comes to coffee coverage in the media, a healthy dose of context (and common sense) is critical.

Take this week’s Daily Mail article, “How Six Cups of Coffee a Day Can Help You to Live Longer,” on new research from the National Cancer Institute (NCI), published in JAMA Internal Medicine.

Let’s take a look of the story, in light of the science:

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Fresh Brewed Data: New NCA Coffee Market Research Breakout Reports

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The National Coffee Association recently launched 8 new market research mini reports, based on new analysis of 2018 consumption trends data

By Karly Nevils, Dig Insights (karly@diginsights.com)

This July, it’s going to be a brew-tiful month!

The NCA has released eight new breakout market research reports based on the 2018 National Coffee Drinking Trends (NCDT) study data.

The reports look at the following topics:

National Coffee Drinking Trends Breakout research Reports

New NCA Market Research Reports

  • Coffee Brewing
  • Health and Coffee
  • Coffee Claims
  • Coffee at Work
  • Gourmet Coffee
  • Coffee Preparation In-Home
  • Coffee Preparation Out-of-Home
  • Tea – available free for a limited time only!

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Which Type of Coffee Drinker Are You?

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New research identifies three main groups of caffeine sensitivity among individuals.

Genetic differences help explain why everyone experiences coffee’s effects differently.

via Coffee & Health

Coffee drinkers fall into one of three major groups based on their caffeine sensitivity, according to physician and author Dr J.W. Langer, in a new report authored for the Institute for Scientific Information on Coffee (ISIC).

The report, “Genetics, Metabolism and Individual Responses to Caffeine,” draws on existing research to explain how the body metabolizes caffeine, why some people are more affected by caffeine than others, and how healthcare professionals can take this into account when advising patients.

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Why the Latest Prop 65 Ruling is Bad for Coffee Farmers

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Coffee is both delicious and healthy.”

California’s Misguided Labeling Decision Impacts Coffee Growers & Drinkers

This post was originally published on the Global Farmer Network

By Luiz Roberto Saldanha Rodrigues

When a Los Angeles judge earlier this month finalized a ruling that coffee sold in California must carry cancer warning labels, many California residents may not have paid much attention to yet another labeling requirement.   

Ever since voters passed Proposition 65 more than 30 years ago, after all, Californians have watched the steady proliferation of vague statements about chemicals, cancer, and birth defects. They appear almost everywhere, from the windows of hardware stores to signs at Disneyland. They’re so abundant that Amazon even sells them as stickers in rolls of 500.  

Many people have begun to ignore these labels because they’re so common and because the information they convey is almost useless.  

So why am I  concerned if they now also show up on coffee?

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