Coffee may be an essential part of your morning routine. It wakes you up and gives you the energy to face your day. But have you ever given any thought to how coffee affects the health of your heart? Here is what you need to know about coffee and its ingredients.
Caffeine is the primary active ingredient in coffee – it is what gives you your get-up-and-go. The caffeine in your coffee causes a number of metabolic effects, which means caffeine affects several body systems. It stimulates your central nervous system, for example, which means it “wakes up” the nerves of your brain and spinal cord. Caffeine releases fatty acids from adipose tissue, so your cup of joe can help your body burn fat. The caffeine in your morning mug can also affect your kidneys to increase urination.
Benefits and Drawbacks of Coffee on Your Heart Health
There are some drawbacks to drinking coffee. Stimulating the central nervous system can make you feel nervous, anxious, or stressed, especially if you are not used to the effects of caffeine. Coffee might even make it hard to sleep, and the National Sleep Foundation says that sleep deprivation can increase your risk of cardiovascular disease and coronary heart disease.
Drinking coffee can increase your heart rate, which can cause strain on your heart. Consuming coffee can raise your blood pressure too, especially if you are not used to the effects of caffeine.
Increased urination can lead to dehydration, which can cause strain on your heart. Dehydration causes a decrease in the overall volume of blood coursing through your body. To compensate for the lower blood volume, your heart must beat faster. This causes a faster heart rate and may even cause palpitations, which means you feel a noticeably rapid, pounding, or irregular heartbeat.
Your cup of coffee may be adding to your overall caffeine intake each day. Other foods and beverages, such as tea, certain soft drinks, chocolate, and some nuts also contain caffeine.
Researchers are still investigating whether high caffeine intake through coffee and other sources might increase your risk of coronary heart disease, a condition in which waxy plaque builds up in the arteries that supply oxygen-rich blood to your heart.
Drinking one to two cups of coffee each day does not seem to be harmful to the heart, according to the American Heart Association. In fact, Johns Hopkins cites research that says that coffee drinkers are less likely to die from coronary heart disease, stroke, and several other serious conditions. The research also suggests that drinking one to two cups of coffee a day may help reduce your risk of heart failure, which is a condition where your heart is too weak to pump blood well.
In addition to caffeine, coffee contains other substances that may be good for your cardiovascular system. Coffee contains antioxidants, for example, which fight the damaging effects of free radicals. Other active substances in coffee can reduce internal inflammation and protect you against disease.
You should not drink coffee if you have certain heart problems, such as heart failure. Be sure to talk with your doctor if you think you have heart problems and wonder if coffee is right for you. Your doctor can order tests, such as a EBCT Heart Scan, to evaluate the health of your heart. Optimize your health and contact Virtual Imaging, Inc. today and schedule a scan for cardiovascular disease, lung cancer, and colon cancer.