London - If you’re feeling thirsty, you might think a glass of water is the sensible thing to reach for.
Not necessarily, according to researchers - who say that coffee is just as good.
Believe it or not, they claim the idea that coffee dehydrates us is a myth and a few cups of it a day can be as thirst-quenching as water.
The industry-funded study at Birmingham University asked 50 healthy men to drink four mugs of either water or coffee a day for three days.
Tests showed they were just as well hydrated whichever they chose, the journal PLOS ONE reported.
Sports scientist Sophie Killer said the idea coffee dehydrates us stems from research on caffeine more than 80 years ago. But caffeine interacts with other compounds in the brew, so the 1928 study isn’t necessarily relevant to daily life.
She added: ‘It is a common belief that coffee consumption can lead to dehydration and should be avoided or reduced.
‘The advice provided in the public health domain regarding coffee intake and hydration status should be updated to reflect these findings.’