60-Second Health

Meta-Study: Moderate Coffee Cuts Cardiac Failure

Sixteen ounces of coffee a day cut the risk of heart failure, but 40 daily ounces of coffee upped the odds of ticker trouble. Katherine Harmon reports

A good cup of coffee can get you out of bed in the morning. But for heart patients coffee's often on the list of things to avoid. The American Heart Association advises that it might increase the risk of heart failure.

But a new report suggests that moderate coffee drinking could actually lower the odds of heart failure. The findings are in the journal Circulation. [Elizabeth Mostofsky et al, Habitual Coffee Consumption and Risk of Heart Failure: A Dose-Response Meta-Analysis]

Researchers poured through five studies that followed more than 140,000 European adults, and included information about coffee intake. People who drank about 16 ounces of coffee a day—a grande in Starbucks-speak—had about an 11 percent reduction of the risk of heart failure. People who drink coffee also seem to have less type 2 diabetes, another risk factor for heart disease.

But that doesn't mean it's time to start ordering the venti. In the studies, people who consumed more than 40 ounces a day were at an increased risk for heart failure. More research should filter out the best info, which will percolate down to the public.

—Katherine Harmon

[The above text is a transcript of this podcast.]      

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