The European Society of Cardiology has published a study in which the consumption of two or three cups of coffee a day is related to a longer and healthier life, from the cardiovascular point of view. The benefits would be obtained by drinking ground, instant or decaffeinated coffee .
The study carried out is of an observational type and has had the participation of a large number of people, specifically 449,563 adults between 40 and 69 years of age who did not suffer from arrhythmias or other cardiovascular diseases at the beginning of the experiment. The researchers’ goal was to study the associations between different types of coffee and arrhythmias, cardiovascular disease and death. Coronary heart disease, congestive heart failure, and ischemic stroke were included in the group of cardiovascular diseases.
“In this large observational study, ground, instant and decaf coffee were associated with equivalent reductions in the incidence of cardiovascular disease and death from cardiovascular disease or from any cause,” said study author Professor Peter Kistler , from the Baker Heart and Diabetes Research Institute, Melbourne, Australia. “The results suggest that mild to moderate intake of ground, instant, and decaffeinated coffee should be considered part of a healthy lifestyle .”
The study included the participation of 449,563 adults with a mean age of 58 years, whose data was obtained from the UK Biobank. 55.3% were women. Participants were asked in a questionnaire how many cups of coffee they used to drink a day and what type: instant, ground or decaf. Responses fell into six categories: no cup, less than one, one, two to three, four to five, and more than five cups a day. The result was that 44.1% of participants said they drink instant coffee, 18.4% ground and 15.2% decaffeinated. 22.4% declared not to drink coffee. This was the group with which to compare data.
What the researchers did was compare coffee drinkers with non-drinkers to see what the incidence of arrhythmias, cardiovascular disease, and death was in one group versus the other. Certain factors were previously taken into account, such as age, sex, ethnicity, obesity, high blood pressure, diabetes, obstructive sleep apnea, smoking, and consumption of tea and alcohol. Information on outcomes was obtained from medical records and death records. The median follow-up was 12.5 years.
27,809 (6.2%) people died during follow-up. All types of coffee were associated with a reduction in death from any cause. The greatest risk reduction was seen in the two to three cups a day category. When it came to coffee type, compared to non-drinkers, the odds of death were 27% lower for ground coffee, 14% lower for decaf, and 11% lower for instant.
43,173 (9.6%) people were diagnosed with cardiovascular disease throughout the study. All types of coffee were associated with a lower risk of suffering from these types of diseases. Again, the lowest risk was seen by drinking two to three cups of coffee per day. Compared to people who said they didn’t drink coffee, those who did drink it reduced the probability of suffering from cardiovascular disease, 20% if they drank the ground version, 6% the decaf and 9% the instant.
An arrhythmia was diagnosed in 30,100 (6.7%) participants during follow-up. Ground and instant coffee, but not decaf, were associated with a reduction in arrhythmias , including atrial fibrillation. Compared to non-drinkers, the lowest risks were seen with four to five cups per day of ground coffee and two to three cups per day of instant coffee, with a 17% and 12% reduction in risk, respectively.
Professor Kistler said: “Caffeine is the best-known component of coffee, but this beverage contains more than 100 biologically active components. Non-caffeinated compounds are likely to be responsible for the observed positive relationships between coffee consumption, disease and survival. Our results indicate that the consumption of modest amounts of coffee of all kinds should not be discouraged, but can be enjoyed as a heart-healthy behavior.”
Referencia: Chieng, D., Canovas, R., Segan. L. et al. The impact of coffee subtypes on incident cardiovascular disease, arrhythmias, and mortality: long-term outcomes from the UK Biobank. European Journal of Preventive Cardiology. 2022. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1093/eurjpc/zwac189