Drinking caffeinated coffee regularly may be linked with a lower stroke risk, according to Harvard and Madrid researchers. Women who drank two to three cups a day had a 19% reduction in the risk of all strokes but consumption of tea and caffeinated soft drinks was not significantly associated with a lowered stroke risk. The association was significant only in women who had never smoked or who had quit.
Other recent studies have also found that drinking coffee was associated with a decreased risk of diabetes as well as dementia.
Researchers believe the health benefits from coffee probably originate from substances other than caffeine. Phenolic compounds in coffee have strong antioxidant properties, which may improve endothelial function. Caffeinated coffee appears to have beneficial effects on glucose metabolism, inflammation, and endothelial function which would account for protection against diabetes and stroke.
While these studies are very good news for coffee drinkers, be aware that more research needs to be done. Also keep in mind that some people should not drink coffee at all, and for others, drinking too much coffee can be problematic and lead to a number of health problems.
Source: “High Coffee Consumption Linked to Lower Stroke Risk for Women”, MedPage Today, February 17, 2009
Source: Lopez-Garcia E, et al “Coffee consumption and risk of stroke in women” Circulation 2009; 119: 1116-1123.
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