Decaf is better for you, study finds Halting caffeine may lower blood pressure.


ATLANTA -- Coffee drinkers may be able to lower their blood pressure by giving up coffee or switching to a decaffeinated brand.

A new study at Stanford University in California has found that people who give up caffeinated coffee may be able to lower their blood pressure, a risk factor for heart disease and stroke.

The researchers reported their findings at the annual meeting of the American College of Cardiology in Atlanta this week.

No differences were observed in the resting pressures of those drinking decaffeinated coffee or no coffee, said Jeff Mylls, of Stanford's Center for Research in Disease Prevention. There were, however, significant reductions in the pressures recorded during the subjects' daily activities, he said.

There were no blood pressure reductions among the subjects who continued to drink caffeinated coffee.

Since caffeine stimulates the part of the brain that regulates the contraction and dilation of blood vessels, it might play a role in raising blood pressure, said Dr. Eliot Corday, professor of medicine at the University of California, Los Angeles and past president of the American College of Cardiology.

"Overall, this could be a contributing factor in the development of heart disease," he said.

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