Coffee is Really Good for the Heart
Even people with heart conditions may consider coffee ‘part of a healthy diet,’ new research finds
Coffee is, for some of us, right behind air and water on Maslow’s hierarchy of human needs and well ahead of love, esteem, and self-actualization. Luckily, coffee is really good for most people—lowering the risk of type 2 diabetes, heart attacks, and some cancers—with few significant side effects. It’s even recommended by the Food & Drug Administration as part of a healthy diet.
Now scientists have brewed up another reason to enjoy your daily habit: Two or three cups a day promotes good heart health and longer life not only among healthy individuals, but also in people with various types of heart disease.
The three-part study, presented this week at a meeting of the American College of Cardiology but not yet published in a peer-reviewed journal, examined a decade of data on people in the UK.
The first part analyzed 382,535 people, average age 57, who had no history of heart disease at the outset. Those who consumed two to three cups of coffee daily had a 10% to 15% lower risk of developing heart disease, heart rhythm problems, heart failure, or dying for any reason during the 10-year study period.
The second part looked at 34,279 individuals who had some form of cardiovascular disease at the start of the study period. Again, two or three daily cups of coffee was linked to a lower risk of death, including for people with heart rhythm issues like atrial fibrillation (AFib). For example, people who had a history of AFib and who drank one cup of coffee daily were 20% less likely to die than non-coffee drinkers with AFib.
Does no harm
You might have heard that coffee can quicken heart rate, and “some people worry that drinking it could trigger or worsen certain heart issues,” says study leader Peter Kistler, MD, a professor and researcher at the Alfred Hospital and Baker Heart Institute in Melbourne, Australia.
“But our data suggest that daily coffee intake shouldn’t be discouraged, but rather included as a part of a healthy diet for people with and without heart disease,” Kistler says in a statement. “We found coffee…