Can caffeine increase blood pressure

Coffee doesn't increase blood pressure

Coffee doesn't increase blood pressure. This is the result of a recent meta-study on the health effects of coffee and caffeine. The aromatic hot drink even reduces the risk of cardiovascular diseases.

Drinking two to five cups a day also lowers the risk of diabetes-2, some cancers, and liver disease. This is what researchers working with Rob van Dam from the Saw Swee Hock School of Public Health at the University of Singapore report.

Coffee doesn't increase blood pressure

In addition to the caffeine, the health benefits of coffee are due to the phytochemicals it contains, including polyphenols, the alkaloid trigonelline, melanoidins, magnesium, potassium and vitamin B. These compounds can lower oxidative stress and improve intestinal health and metabolism.

In studies of caffeinated coffee, no significant effect on blood pressure was found even in people with high blood pressure, possibly because other ingredients in coffee, such as chlorogenic acid, counteract the antihypertensive effects of caffeine. So coffee does not increase blood pressure.

Reduced risk of cardiovascular disease

In fact, coffee consumption was linked to a reduced risk of cardiovascular disease, with the lowest risk being 3 to 5 cups a day. An inverse association between coffee consumption and coronary artery disease, stroke, and death from cardiovascular causes has been observed.

Reduced risk of diabetes 2

Metabolic studies suggest that caffeine can improve energy balance by decreasing appetite and increasing basal metabolic rate, as well as food-induced thermogenesis. Limited evidence from randomized studies confirms a modest positive effect of caffeine intake on body fat.

Consuming caffeinated and decaffeinated coffee reduces insulin resistance in the liver. Habitual coffee consumption has consistently been linked to a reduced risk of type 2 diabetes, with similar associations for caffeinated and decaffeinated coffee.

However, if you have to watch your cholesterol level, you should limit the consumption of unfiltered coffee (French press method, Turkish or Scandinavian coffee, espresso). This preparation method releases a substance that increases LDL cholesterol.

Slightly reduced risk of some cancers

Coffee consumption is associated with a slightly reduced risk of melanoma, non-melanoma skin cancer, breast cancer, and prostate cancer. It also has an impact on liver health, as shown by lower levels of enzymes that reflect liver damage and a lower risk of liver fibrosis and cirrhosis.

Caffeine inhibits hepatocarcinogenesis in animal models, while coffee containing caffeine lowers collagen levels in the liver in patients with hepatitis C.

Reduced risk of gallstones

Coffee consumption has been linked to a decreased risk of gallstones and gallbladder cancer, with a stronger association with caffeinated coffee than decaffeinated coffee, suggesting that caffeine may play a protective role. In US cohorts, consumption of both caffeinated and decaffeinated coffee was associated with a reduced risk of kidney stones.

Coffee and Parkinson's

The researchers found studies that showed an inverse association between caffeinated coffee consumption and Parkinson's disease. In addition, caffeine prevents Parkinson's disease in animal models. Van Dam, however, limits the informative value of the investigations evaluated.

"These are epidemiological studies so we cannot completely rule out the possibility that there are other characteristics of coffee consumers that explain their lower risk for these diseases." The studies may contain measurement errors and miscalculations, as most studies do not take into account the brew strength, the cup size, or the milk or sugar added to the coffee.

Less suicide and depression

Coffee and caffeine consumption has been linked to reduced risk of depression and suicide in several cohorts in the US and Europe, although these results may not apply to people with very high intakes (more than 8 cups per day). Coffee consumption has not been consistently linked to the risk of dementia or Alzheimer's disease.

Consuming 2 to 5 standard cups of coffee per day has been linked to reduced mortality in cohort studies around the world. With a consumption of more than 5 cups of coffee per day, the risk of death in large cohort studies was lower or similar to the risk without coffee consumption. Consumption of caffeinated coffee and consumption of decaffeinated coffee were similarly linked to a reduced risk of death from some cause.

Caffeine can increase alertness

In moderate doses (40 to 300 mg), caffeine can reduce fatigue, increase alertness, and shorten reaction times. These effects of caffeine have been observed in individuals who do not habitually consume caffeine and in habitual users after short periods of abstinence.

Caffeine intake can improve alertness during long-term tasks that offer limited stimulation, such as working on assembly lines, driving long distances, and flying airplanes.

Caffeine affects sleep

Consuming caffeine later in the day can make it longer time to fall asleep and decrease the quality of sleep. Caffeine can also cause anxiety, especially in high doses (200 mg once or more than 400 mg per day) and in people with anxiety or bipolar disorder.

Cessation of caffeine consumption after normal consumption can lead to withdrawal symptoms, including headache, fatigue, decreased alertness and depressed mood, and in some cases flu-like symptoms.

Too much caffeine can have negative health effects, including anxiety, insomnia, or psychomotor restlessness. It is recommended that caffeine consumption be limited to 400 mg per day for the general population.

Reduce caffeine during pregnancy

Higher caffeine intake has been linked to lower birth weight and a higher risk of loss of pregnancy. Associations with low birth weight have been observed with both coffee and tea. The association between caffeine and pregnancy loss was not significant at lower intake levels.

Although evidence of adverse effects of caffeine on fetus health is inconclusive, researchers advise limiting caffeine consumption during pregnancy to a maximum of 200 mg per day. The study was published in the specialist magazine NEJM.

Photo: Adobe Stock / Nitr

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