Tuesday, 3 March 2015

Love Coffee? Your Heart May, Too


Three to five cups daily appeared to lower risk of clogged arteries, study says

WebMD News from HealthDay

By Steven Reinberg

HealthDay Reporter

MONDAY, March 2, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Drinking three to five cups of coffee a day may reduce the risk of developing clogged arteries, which in turn might reduce the risk for heart attack, a new study suggests.

"We found that drinking three to five cups a day was associated with less calcium build-up in the arteries," said researcher Dr. Eliseo Guallar, a professor from the department of epidemiology and medicine at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in Baltimore.

Calcium build-up is an early sign of hardening of the arteries and the risk for heart disease, he explained.

Guallar said that this study cannot show a direct cause-and-effect relationship between coffee and reduced calcium in the arteries, but noted that the association between these factors is very strong.

Although the reasons for this association are not known, Guallar said, researchers speculated that coffee may reduce the risk for type 2 diabetes, a risk factor for hardening of the arteries.

Guallar doesn't go so far as to recommend that people start drinking coffee just to prevent heart disease. But he did note, "People should not be concerned about coffee intake. This is a habit that is not harmful to the heart."

The report was published March 2 online in the journal Heart.

Dr. Gregg Fonarow, a professor of cardiology at the University of California, Los Angeles, said, "Multiple studies have shown that coffee consumption is associated with lower risk of heart attacks and strokes, with lowest risk with three to five cups of coffee a day."

In fact, the 2015 Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee recently released a report saying that the health risks associated with drinking that much coffee are minimal, and having as many as five cups of coffee each day is linked to several health benefits, including a reduced risk of type 2 diabetes, Fonarow said.

For the study, Guallar's team collected data on more than 25,000 men and women living in South Korea. Their average age was 41. None had signs of heart disease. During a yearly health exam, the participants were asked about what they ate and drank. They all had CT scans to determine how much calcium had built up in their heart arteries.

source : Love Coffee? Your Heart May, Too

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