People who drink three to four cups of coffee a day have about 40 percent less risk of getting heart, cerebral vascular or respiratory diseases compared with those who barely drink the beverage, according to a summary of findings published online by Japanese researchers Thursday.

Their research, previously published online in English in March in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, could not find any relationship between coffee drinking and death from cancer. Meanwhile, coffee drinkers had a 24 percent less risk of dying from cancer compared with nondrinkers.

The research was conducted on about 90,000 people aged between 40 and 69 living in 10 prefectures in the 1990s, and followed up on them until 2011 to determine the relationship between their daily habits and major causes of death among Japanese.