By Elda Hauschildt
Moderate coffee drinking likely plays a small role in the development of hypertension, associated with only small increases in blood pressure over years of follow-up, United States researchers say.
"In this long-term prospective study, drinking one cup of coffee a day was associated with small increases in blood pressure. Despite this persistent pressor effect, long-term coffee drinking did not substantially increase the risk of developing hypertension in this cohort," explain investigators from Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland.
They report that non-drinkers were at lower risk of hypertension than coffee drinkers but they found no progressive increase in risk associated with higher levels of coffee drinking.
The investigators followed a cohort of 1,017 white, male, former medical students for a median of 33 years. When they adjusted for other factors associated with incidence of hypertension, risks associated with coffee drinking were no longer statistically significant.