Coffee linked to higher heart disease risk in severe high blood pressure

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A recent study has found that consuming two or more cups of coffee daily may double the risk of death from heart disease among individuals with severe high blood pressure (160/100 mm Hg or higher).

In contrast, one cup of coffee or daily consumption of green tea did not increase the risk of heart disease-related mortality, even though both beverages contain caffeine.

This study sheds light on the potential risks associated with coffee consumption, particularly for individuals with severe hypertension.

Coffee and Heart Health

Previous research has produced mixed findings regarding the effects of coffee consumption on heart health. Some studies have suggested that moderate coffee intake may be beneficial, such as reducing the risk of heart attacks or strokes and aiding heart attack survivors.

Additionally, regular coffee consumption has been associated with potential benefits, including the prevention of chronic illnesses, appetite control, lower risk of depression, and improved alertness.

However, excessive coffee consumption can lead to adverse effects such as increased blood pressure, anxiety, heart palpitations, and sleep disturbances.

The study categorized blood pressure into five groups: optimal and normal (less than 130/85 mm Hg), high normal (130-139/85-89 mm Hg), grade 1 hypertension (140-159/90-99 mm Hg), grade 2 (160-179/100-109 mm Hg), and grade 3 (higher than 180/110 mm Hg), with grades 2 and 3 considered severe hypertension.

The study included over 6,570 men and more than 12,000 women aged 40 to 79 years.

Study Findings

Over nearly 19 years of follow-up, during which 842 cardiovascular-related deaths occurred, the researchers made several key observations:

Drinking two or more cups of coffee per day was associated with double the risk of heart disease-related death in individuals with blood pressure measuring 160/100 mm Hg or higher, compared to those who did not consume coffee.

Consuming one cup of coffee daily did not increase the risk of heart disease-related death across any blood pressure categories.

Green tea intake was not linked to an increased risk of heart disease death in any blood pressure category.


These findings suggest that individuals with severe high blood pressure should exercise caution when consuming excessive amounts of coffee.

Given their heightened sensitivity to caffeine, the potential harmful effects of caffeine may outweigh its protective benefits and increase the risk of death from heart disease.

In contrast, green tea’s lack of association with increased risk may be attributed to the presence of polyphenols, which are micronutrients known for their antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, found in plants.

If you care about blood pressure, please read studies about unhealthy habits that could increase high blood pressure risk, and people with severe high blood pressure should reduce coffee intake.

For more information about blood pressure, please see recent studies that early time-restricted eating could help improve blood pressure, and results showing plant-based foods could benefit people with high blood pressure.

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