An extensive study into gout has revealed that drinking four cups of coffee a day may help prevent the disease.
Tests carried out over 12-years in the US found that increased coffee consumption could decrease risks of contracting the disease in men over the age of 40.
According to the UK Gout Society, gout is the most common cause of inflammatory joint disease in men over 40-years-old and is almost six times more likely to affect men than women.
The study involved 45,869 men over the age of 40 with no history of gout who documented their daily intake of coffee and other products containing caffeine, such as tea, cola and chocolate.
Coffee was the only substance that had an affect on the risk of contracting gout, reducing chances by 40 per cent in the men who drank four to five cups a day, while six or more cups a day registered a 59 per cent reduction compared to men who never drank coffee.
Dr Choi, who conducted the research, believes the results can help older people make an informed decision about their coffee intake.
"Our findings are most directly generalisable to men age 40-years and older, the most gout-prevalent population, with no history of gout," he commented.
Dr Choi suggests that coffee contains strong antioxidants which help to lower uric acid levels, the substance which causes gout if there is too much in the body.