Coffee drinking has been linked to greater risk of heart attacks in young adults with mild hypertension.
Lucio Mos, a cardiologist at Hospital of San Daniele del Friuli in Udine, Italy, tracked 1,200 patients aged 18 to 25, over 12 years. All had untreated stage 1 hypertension, defined by systolic blood pressure between 140 and 159 mmHg and/or diastolic blood pressure between 90 and 99 mmHg.
There was a linear relationship between coffee use and risk of hypertension needing treatment.
Mos found that heavy coffee drinkers had a four-fold increased risk while moderate drinkers tripled their risk.
“There is controversy surrounding the long term cardiovascular and metabolic effects of coffee consumption in patients with hypertension,” he said.
“Our study was designed to evaluate whether coffee drinking had an effect on the risk of cardiovascular events, and if the association was mediated by effects on blood pressure and glucose metabolism.”
The risk of prediabetes related to coffee consumption differed according to the CYP1A2 genotype, which determines whether individuals are fast or slow caffeine metabolisers. The risk of prediabetes was increased significantly only in slow caffeine metabolisers.
Bill Condie is a science journalist based in Adelaide, Australia.
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