Caffeine addicts are at higher risk of cardiac arrhythmias that could precipitate sudden death.1 Coffee raises blood pressure and raises cholesterol and homocysteine, two risk factors for heart disease.2I guess people living in Chicago didn’t get the memo because a new survey shows that Chi-Town is the most caffeinated city in the United States. Kristina Cooke of Reuters has more:
Chicagoans eat more chocolate and drink more cola than other U.S. urbanites, and are among the top consumers of energy drinks and coffee.Maybe they should call it the “Jittery City” instead of the Windy City. Dr. Fuhrman’s colleague Jeff Novick, MS, RD isn’t a fan of caffeine either. Check it out:
They are also likely to say caffeine is good for you, according to the poll conducted by Prince Market Research…
"…It's surprising perhaps that some places you may think have a lot of hustle and bustle like San Francisco, Philadelphia and New York, were the least caffeinated cities," said Todd Smith, a spokesman for HealthSaver, a healthcare discount service that commissioned the poll.
The survey looked at consumption of coffee, tea, chocolate, sodas, energy drinks and caffeine pills in 20 major cities in the United States by interviewing 2,000 people.
In a Finnish study reported in the Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases, Dr. Maarku Heliovaara of the National Public Health Institute in Helsinki and colleagues found that people who drank four or more cups of coffee each day had twice the risk of developing rheumatoid arthritis, compared with people who drank less coffee. Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease in which the body’s defenses attack its own tissues, resulting in a chronic destruction and deformity of the joints. Smoking, high cholesterol, being overweight, and certain dietary factors also have been linked with a higher risk of the disease.I used to drink a lot of coffee, but I kicked it cold-turkey almost two years ago.
Too much caffeine also has been shown to raise women’s risk for incontinence. According to a report in the July 2000 issue of Obstetrics and Gynecology, women who drink more than four cups of brewed coffee a day—or consume a lot of caffeine from other sources, such as tea, cola, or cocoa—may be more than twice as likely to suffer incontinence from a weakened bladder muscle as women who consume less caffeine.
A study reported in the February 2002 issue of Diabetes Care, found that moderate consumption of caffeine reduced insulin sensitivity by 15 percent. The researchers also found that caffeine increased catecholamines, plasma-free fatty acids, and both systolic and diastolic blood pressure. The moderate consumption of caffeine caused a fivefold increase in epinephrine. Epinephrine increases the production of glucose in the liver and interferes with the ability of muscle and fat cells to use glucose.
1. Mehta, A., A. C. Jain, M.C. Mehta, and M. Billie. 1997. Caffeine and cardiac arrhythmias: an experimental study in dogs with review of literature. Acta Cardiol. 52 (3):273-83.
2. Nurminen, M.L., L. Niittymen, R. Korpela, and H. Vapaatalo. 1999. Coffee, caffeine and blood pressure: a critical review. Eur. J. Clin. Nutr. 53 (11): 831-39; Christensen, B., A. Mosdol, L. Rettersol, et al. 2001. Abstention from filtered coffee reduces the concentration of plasma homocysteine and serum cholesterol—a randomized controlled trail. Am. J. Clin. Nutr. 74(3):302-07.