According to a recent study, coffee consumption may boost the risk of heart disease and prediabetes in young people with high blood pressure.
The study involved more than 1,200 young adults that were monitored for nearly 12 years. Scientists found that heavy drinkers were four times more likely to be affected by a cardiovascular event such as a heart attack. Additionally, moderate drinkers had 3 fold the risk.
The team also found a link between prediabetes risk, high blood pressure, and daily coffee consumption. Dr Lucio Mos, lead author of the study and a researcher at Hospital of San Daniele del Friuli in Italy, explained that past studies had also revealed a link between drinking coffee and high risk of heart disease in young people already affected by high blood pressure.
Yet, Dr. Mos’ team wanted to learn whether the link was correct, and whether the risk had any connection to high glucose levels and high blood pressure.
The study focused on patients that reported drinking coffee and had been diagnosed with stage 1 hypertension. Researchers divided volunteers in three groups – non-drinkers, moderate drinkers, and heavy drinkers.
Heavy drinkers were the ones who routinely drank four or more cups of coffee per day, while moderate drinkers only sipped one to three cups per day.
The research team found that about one-quarter were non-drinkers, 62.7 percent were moderate drinkers while heavy drinkers made up nearly 10 percent. Nevertheless, participants who drank coffee were on average older and had a higher BMI than their non-drinking peers.
Researchers also found a link between coffee consumption and high blood pressure; but the link was statistically significant only in people who reported drinking at least four cups of coffee per day.
Scientists also examined the link between coffee consumption and a high risk of prediabetes on the long run. The team explained that high blood pressure patients already have a risk of prediabetes. But the risk was higher in heavy drinkers than in the other two groups.
But researchers found that coffee-consumption-related prediabetes was influenced by the CYP1A2 genotype, which shows whether people metabolize caffeine at a fast or slow pace. People who metabolize caffeine slowly were at the highest risk of prediabetes, the study showed.
Dr. Mos believes that these patients are exposed to the negative effects of coffee on glucose metabolism for a prolonged period of time.
The study’s results were unveiled during a ESC annual conference in London.
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