This is probably due to the quartzite and chlorogenic acid in the beans, suggest researchers from the University of Bologna.
Coffee is one of the most popular beverages in the world, and in recent years its consumption has been associated with positive effects on the body – especially in terms of cardiovascular health, type 2 diabetes and a number of neurodegenerative and liver diseases.
Now, a team of Italian doctors from the University Hospital in Bologna, Italy, are taking it a step further by providing data on the effect of the test cups on blood pressure.
It turns out that people who drink 2 cups of coffee a day, and those who consume more than 3, have lower systolic blood pressure (called colloquially upper) than those who do not drink the drink at all. Similar trends were observed for the peripheral pulse and aortic pressures of the people included in the study – a roughly equal number of men and women of a similar age and with almost the same number of hypertensives among them. The project, led by the president of the Italian Society of Dietary Supplements Prof. Arrigo Cicero, took into account 4 years of clinical assessments of lifestyle and dietary habits, smoking and current drug treatments, anthropometric measurements, resting blood pressure and heart rate measurements plus a 12-lead electrocardiogram.
The researchers found that systolic blood pressure “tended to decrease” as the number of cups consumed increased. Their publication in the journal Nutrition found that those study participants who drank one cup a day registered an average of 1 mm of mercury (mmHg) lower than non-coffee drinkers, while those who consumed 2 cups, have a 5.2 mmHg lower upper pressure.
The scientists also reported that people drinking 3 cups saw an average drop of 5 mmHg. Overall, those who consumed more than 3 cups showed an average of 9.7 mmHg lower compared to non-coffee drinkers.
The researchers don’t say that lowering is the ideal goal. Ideally, the final values should remain below 120/90.
When the upper value permanently transfers 140, it is already considered hypertension.
A recent large meta-analysis of observational longitudinal studies with a total of over 12 million participants concluded that there is a nonlinear protective relationship between long-term coffee consumption and cardiovascular events. Specifically, the trend favors those who drink an average of 3.5 cups per day compared to non-drinkers. Similar data were recently confirmed among Americans.
Although coffee increases blood pressure in the short term, no such dependence has been established in the long term.
In studies comparing the effects of decaffeinated and decaffeinated coffee, there was no difference in blood effects. This suggests that caffeine alone is not the primary determinant of coffee’s health effects. It seems that the final neutral or positive effect of the drink is determined by its bioactive compounds. In particular, chlorogenic acid, which is the most concentrated polyphenol in coffee beans and whose bioavailability is inversely proportional to roasting time, is believed to be one of the main compounds responsible for coffee’s potential blood-lowering effect. Secondly, the quercetin contained in the beans contributes.
However, other studies do not support the conclusion of a protective role for coffee. Doctors remain divided on the subject, warning that excessive amounts of coffee can damage the heart.
The European Food Safety Agency defines as suitable for most adults a daily dose of 400 mg of caffeine, which a person gets from about 4 cups of coffee. However, individual sensitivity to caffeine varies – some are fine with 6 or more cups a day, while others feel jittery after 1 or 2.
Illustrative Photo by Pavel Danilyuk: