Good news, caffeine addicts: coffee isn't bad for your heart

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If you feel guilty about drinking your daily cup (or three) of coffee, you can take some solace in a new study that says it isn’t that bad for your heart.

Researchers from the University of California San Francisco say drinking coffee on a regular basis doesn’t cause heart palpitations, which can be related to heart and stroke deaths.

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Study author Gregory Marcus, a UCSF cardiologist, said consuming caffeine might actually be good for you.

“Clinical recommendations advising against the regular consumption of caffeinated products to prevent disturbances of the heart’s cardiac rhythm should be reconsidered, as we may unnecessarily be discouraging consumption of items like chocolate, coffee and tea that might actually have cardiovascular benefits,” he said in a statement.

“Given our recent work demonstrating that extra heartbeats can be dangerous, this finding is especially relevant.”

Indeed, there’s emerging evidence that caffeinated products like coffee, tea, and chocolate could benefit your heart. The American Heart Association, however, is hesitant to say caffeine is beneficial, but does note that one or two cups of coffee a day won’t harm you.

It’s worth noting, too, that coffee is still addictive, and regular drinkers can experience “caffeine withdrawl” if they go 12 to 24 hours without it, with symptoms ranging from headaches to anxiety and depression.

The study analyzed 1,388 randomly selected patients from the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute Cardiovascular Health Study database. Around 61% of those participants say they consume one or more caffeinated product per day.

The study was published in the Journal of the American Heart Association and is available in full here.

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Lauren Sundstrom Lauren is a Staff Writer and Projects Assistant at Vancity Buzz. She is a graduate of BCIT's Broadcast and Online Journalism program. She loves reporting on breaking news and lifestyle content. If you feel like you have a story that needs to be told, fire her a tweet.
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