Cup-O-Joe Doesn't Affect Blood Flow

Increased coffee consumption is not linked to increased risk for hypertension

/ Author:  / Reviewed by: Joseph V. Madia, MD

(RxWiki News) People love their coffee. So, when news comes out that drinking too many 'cups of joe' could be bad for your heart health, some coffee drinkers are naturally disappointed.

At least coffee doesn't raise your blood pressure, according to recent research.

Researchers found that there was no relationship between regularly drinking several cups of coffee each day and an increased risk of high blood pressure.

However, they found that there may be a small risk of high blood pressure for people who drink a little bit of coffee each day (about 1 to 3 cups).

"Drinking coffee may not raise your blood pressure."

Past studies have found links between drinking high amounts of coffee and a slightly higher blood pressure. However, the authors of the new research write that those studies did not track the study's participants long enough.

So, they followed coffee drinkers for as long as 33 years and found that we don't have to worry about our blood pressure when we're trying to wake up for the workday with a large cup of java.

The research showed people's risk for high blood pressure slightly increased from zero to three cups per day, but then decreased for consumption levels above that. 

In Depth

In order to study the relationship between coffee consumption and blood pressure, Zhenzhen Zhang, from Michigan State University, and colleagues followed 172,567 people for a mean follow-up that ranged from 6.4 to 33 years.

The researchers found:

  • Compared to people who drank less than one cup of coffee per day, the relative risk for high blood pressure for people who drank one to three cups per day was 1.09 (95% confidence interval CI ranging from 1.01 to 1.18)
  • The relative risk for high blood pressure for people who drank three to five cups per day was 1.07 (95% CI 0.96-1.20)
  • The relative risk for high blood pressure for people who drank six cups or more per day was 1.08 (95% CI: 0.96, 1.21)
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Last Updated:
March 31, 2012