Your Daily Grind

What do 83% of adults in the US have in common? Not much, but there is one thing. They all drink coffee, according to the National Coffee Association. There’s been a lot of talk about whether this lifeblood is actually good for us though.

Some research has argued that coffee is unhealthy because of the effects of caffeine on health such as increasing blood pressure, negatively affecting cholesterol, and contributing toward diabetes. On the other hand, other studies have pointed out that coffee contains things other than caffeine, which have potentially beneficial effects on inflammation and blood sugar.

A large study that looked at over 1 million people and their coffee-drinking habits had some interesting findings to sip on. They found that

drinking between 3-5 cups per day was associated

with the lowest rates of heart disease.

Doing this lowered the risk of heart disease by 11-15%! To give a sense of how powerful that is, it’s estimated that moderate exercise for 30 minutes per day, 5 days per week could prevent 5% of heart disease. Let me try to read your mind… no you should drink more coffee in place of exercising, but you might consider doing both.

What is it about this magical morning (or afternoon… or evening… or anytime) beverage that’s so healthy? It’s rich in phytochemicals, such as chlorogenic acid, which are antioxidants. These antioxidants are thought to decrease inflammation, which is a hot topic in heart disease treatment nowadays. There are a couple of new clinical trials seeing if medications that decrease inflammation help prevent heart disease, but wouldn’t it be nice if instead of medication, you could just have a cup o’ joe?

Here’s the take home: coffee is rich in antioxidants that can help decrease inflammation, which has heart-healthy benefits! Tired of reading? Go have some coffee to wake up and get health!

 

If you have questions about your heart health, ask Heartbeat’s top doctors here.

Published by: Mark P. Abrams, MD

I'm an Internist, Educator, and Cardiology fellow in training. As the Director of Patient Engagement at Heartbeat Health, my goal is to make trustworthy information easily accessible and more available so that people can become more active members of their healthcare teams. By joining together, we can work toward keeping more people healthier, happier, and living longer fulfilling lives.

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