Multiple studies have shown that drinking coffee may make arteries stiffer, but according to a latest study, coffee may not be as bad as previously thought. The 'British Cardiovascular Society Annual Conference' in Manchester said that previous studies stating that drinking coffee leads to stiffer arteries are inconsistent and limited in nature.
If arteries become stiff, it may hinder your blood flow. Obstructed blood flow could lead to stroke or attack. Dr Kenneth Fung, who led the data analysis for the research at Queen Mary University of London, said "Despite the huge popularity of coffee worldwide, different reports could put people off from enjoying it. Whilst we can't prove a causal link in this study, our research indicates coffee isn't as bad for the arteries as previous studies would suggest.
"Although our study included individuals who drink up to 25 cups a day, the average intake amongst the highest coffee consumption group was five cups a day. We would like to study these people more closely in our future work so that we can help to advise safe limits."
(Also Read: How to Brew the Perfect Coffee at Home: A Complete Guide)
Coffee isn't as bad for the arteries as previous studies suggest
For the study, coffee consumption was categorised into three groups. Those who drink less than one cup a day, those who drink between one and three cups a day and those who drink more than three. People who consumed more than 25 cups of coffee a day were not made part of the study. According to the findings, no increased stiffening of arteries was associated with those who drank up to this high limit when compared with those who drank less than one cup a day.
While studying associations, the scientists also took account of factors like age, gender, ethnicity, smoking status, height, weight, alcohol intake, what they ate and high blood pressure.
Of the 8,412 participants who underwent MRI heart scans and infrared pulse wave tests, the research showed that moderate and heavy coffee drinkers were most likely to smoke, consume alcohol regularly and were male.
Professor Metin Avkiran, Associate Medical Director at the British Heart Foundation, said, "Understanding the impact that coffee has on our heart and circulatory system is something that researchers and the media have had brewing for some time."
"There are several conflicting studies saying different things about coffee, and it can be difficult to filter what we should believe and what we shouldn't. This research will hopefully put some of the media reports in perspective, as it rules out one of the potential detrimental effects of coffee on our arteries.