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Caffeinated Coffee Linked to Lower Heart Disease Risk

Association found in elderly subjects with mild or better hypertension

THURSDAY, Nov. 27 (HealthDay News) -- Elderly individuals who drink at least one cup of caffeinated coffee a day have a lower risk of coronary heart disease if they have mild or better hypertension, researchers report in the Dec. 1 issue of the American Journal of Cardiology.

James A. Greenberg, Ph.D., from Brooklyn College of the City University of New York, and colleagues examined the association between caffeinated coffee consumption and heart disease morbidity and mortality using data from 1,354 individuals aged 65 years and older. Caffeinated coffee consumption was determined through a food-frequency questionnaire.

During 10.1 years of follow-up, the researchers documented 210 deaths from cardiovascular disease and 118 from coronary heart disease. There was a significant negative association between caffeinated coffee intake and coronary heart disease in individuals with mild hypertension or better (systolic blood pressure less than 160 mm Hg and diastolic blood pressure less than 100 mm Hg), the investigators found. Individuals who consumed at least one cup of caffeinated coffee per day had a 43 percent lower risk of coronary heart disease than those who did not drink caffeinated coffee, which appeared to be due to a 43 percent reduced risk of heart valve disease, the report indicates.

"Caffeinated coffee consumption was associated with lower risk of coronary heart disease mortality and heart valve disease development or progression in older…subjects without moderate or severe hypertension," Greenberg and colleagues conclude.

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