Here is an example of looking at one thing and saying that it is the be all and end all.  Be careful with this research.  I do believe coffee is part of healthy diet but when it is freshly ground and without milk and sugar and on occasion.  I’m sure drinking four cups of coffee a day may have some other ramifications.

Cyndi O’Meara

 

Coffee lowers risk of hospital trip for heartbeats

SAN FRANCISCO: A shot of espresso may give people the sensation their hearts are racing, but drinking more coffee reduced the likelihood that patients would be hospitalised for irregular heartbeats, researchers say.

A study of more than 130,000 adults found that people who drank four cups or more of coffee daily had an 18 per cent lower risk of being taken to hospital for irregular heartbeats and other heart-rhythm conditions than non-coffee drinkers, researchers at Kaiser Permanente, a healthcare organisation, said.

The risk of being taken to hospital was 7 per cent lower for people who drank one to three cups of coffee daily.

Cardiac rhythm disorders are problems in the heart’s electrical systems that cause it to beat too fast, too slow or irregularly, with atrial fibrillation, a rapid, irregular heartbeat, the most common.

”People who are moderate coffee drinkers can be reassured that they are not doing harm because of their coffee drinking,” said Arthur Klatsky, the study’s lead investigator and a cardiologist at Kaiser’s division of research. The findings may be surprising, because high doses of caffeine have been associated with a perception of the heart ”racing” in people, Dr Klatsky said.

Previous studies on the topic have not found that the racing impression is a measurable increase in heart rate or an irregular heartbeat, he said.

The study looked at 130,054 adults who were members of the Kaiser Permanente health plan and had filled out questionnaires about their coffee- and tea-drinking habits from 1979 to 1985.

The patients’ health status was followed until 2008.

The reduction in the risk of hospital treatment for those who drank four or more cups of coffee daily was consistent for men and women, different ethnic groups, and smokers and non-smokers.

The study showed ”a progressive reduction in risk” of heart irregularities the more coffee people drank, Dr Klatsky said.

”We shouldn’t jump to the conclusion that there is a protective effect of coffee, although the study suggests there might be.”

Source: Bloomberg in The Sydney Morning Herald, March 6 2010, http://www.smh.com.au/lifestyle/wellbeing/coffee-lowers-risk-of-hospital-trip-for-heartbeats-20100305-pora.html

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