Reduce Your Risk of Stroke and Heart Failure by Drinking Coffee

The evidence that coffee has positive health benefits keeps on coming. Most recently a paper presented at an American Heart Association meeting demonstrates a reduced risk of stroke and heart failure in coffee drinkers.

Drinking coffee may be associated with a decreased risk of developing heart failure or having stroke, according to preliminary research presented at the American Heart Association’s Scientific Sessions 2017, a premier global exchange of the latest advances in cardiovascular science for researchers and clinicians.

Researchers used machine learning to analyze data from the long-running Framingham Heart Study, which includes information about what people eat and their cardiovascular health. They found that drinking coffee was associated with decreased risk of developing heart failure by 7 percent and stroke by 8 percent with every additional cup of coffee consumed per week compared with non-coffee drinkers.

What is striking about this study is that the benefit of drinking coffee is measured in cups of coffee a week instead of per day. That means that the one cup a day coffee drinker will have a substantial risk reduction whereas previously the most benefit was typically with folks who drink four or six cups a day.

This is an observational study which means that scientists found a relationship between the amount of coffee that folks drink and a reduced incidence of both stroke and heart failure. The study does not indicate a cause. However, other research may be helpful in that regard. We wrote that the benefits of drinking coffee improve with age.

The researchers say that for every two cups of coffee a person drinks per day they receive the benefit of a 22% lower risk of death in the next ten years. However, when the data is parsed out by age groups it turns out that for those over the age of 45 experienced at 30% reduction in ten year mortality. And when the older people were subtracted from the study there was little change in predicted mortality for the younger members of the study.

The researchers in this study believe that the antioxidants in coffee which reduce inflammation are more beneficial in older persons for whom inflammatory conditions are more dangerous. Heart failure and stroke are primarily diseases of the elderly. Thus the benefit of coffee in prolonging life is proportionally greater in older people. This argument may well explain how you can reduce your risk of stroke and heart failure by drinking coffee.

Regular or Organic?

The study cited above does not distinguish between regular coffee and healthy organic coffee. However, we know that regular coffee can contain as many as 130 unwanted substances such as residues of synthetic fertilizers, herbicides, pesticides or fungicides. These things are not good for your health when ingested. Although coffee in general lets you live longer the effect is more pronounced in older people. We can also assume that if and when someone is able to look at organic versus regular coffee the greater benefit and lesser risk will come down on the side of organic!

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