Is Coffee Healthy for Your Heart?

Is Coffee Healthy for Your Heart?

If coffee raises your blood pressure and heart rate, does that make it a no-go for people with heart disease or those at risk for it? That’s what cardiologists believed back in the day, but modern science has pretty much shattered this misconception.[*][*]

We now know that a cup of Joe is loaded with potent antioxidants and polyphenols. These may not only protect your ticker but impart a plethora of health benefits to make it jump for joy.

So, let’s dive into the science to understand exactly how much coffee researchers recommend for cardiovascular health and the specific perks you’ll get from following their advice.

How Is Coffee Healthy for Your Heart?

Coffee boasts five superpowers that keep your heart running like a well-oiled machine. Recent studies show coffee drinking can help:

1. Lower Inflammation To Prevent Heart Disease

Coffee contains over a thousand bioactive compounds, including the antioxidants and polyphenols we mentioned earlier.[*][*] As the most antioxidant-rich beverage, your daily cup sends forth a cavalry of microscopic knights in shining armor. These are the driving force behind coffee’s benefits.[*][*]

Caffeine (an antioxidant) and chlorogenic acid (a polyphenol) protect your cells from free radicals, which damage your cells, cause oxidative stress, and lead to chronic inflammation.[*][*] Inflammation puts your body at an increased risk of obesity, type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure (hypertension), poor cholesterol levels, coronary heart disease, heart attacks, and strokes.[*]

Luckily, coffee is anti-inflammatory, which means it reduces harmful inflammation and decreases those heart disease risk factors. According to studies:

  • Drinking coffee lowers the risk of type 2 diabetes, obesity, hypertension, and heart disease.[*][*
  • 3–4 cups of coffee/day is considered moderately beneficial for preventing cardiovascular disease.[*]
  • People who drink 3–5 cups of coffee/day have the lowest cardiovascular disease risk.[*]
  • Heavy coffee consumption is not associated with higher heart disease risks.[*]

Now that we know how coffee antioxidants work, we can talk specifics. For example, coffee intake may also:

2. Regulate Blood Pressure Over Time

Does coffee raise blood pressure?

Sure, a few shots of espresso might make your ticker tap dance. That’s why those old-school preventive cardiology and healthcare experts recommended avoiding it. But there’s a lot more to this story.

First, caffeine does not increase your risk of developing hypertension.[*

Further, habitual coffee drinkers develop a tolerance to the effects of caffeine, so there’s almost no noticeable rise in blood pressure or heart rate over time.[*] Long-term java enthusiasts may even notice mild-to-moderate blood pressure declines.[*]

Consider the results from these studies:

  • Middle-aged adults who drank 1–3 cups of coffee/day had a reduced risk of developing hypertension than those who never or rarely drank coffee.[*]
  • In a meta-analysis of 9,000+ participants with a median age of 63, drinking 3 or more cups of coffee/day correlated with lower systolic and diastolic blood pressure.[*]

Lower blood pressure levels mean your heart doesn't have to break a sweat pumping blood throughout your body and to your brain, decreasing strain and your risk of heart disease.

3. Reduce the Risk of Arrhythmias and AFib

Cardiac arrhythmias occur when electrical impulses in the heart don’t work as they should. This results in an abnormal heart rhythm, whether irregular, too fast, or too slow. Atrial fibrillation (AFib) is an irregular, often very rapid heart rate that commonly causes poor blood flow, palpitations, shortness of breath, and fatigue.

Scientists say that coffee isn’t just safe for people at risk of arrhythmias; its antioxidants may play a protective role in preventing AFib.[*][*] For example, a 2019 study showed that drinking 1–3 cups of coffee/day was associated with an 11% lower risk of AFib; drinking 4–5 cups daily conferred a 16% reduced risk.[*][*]

Plus, a new study from 2022 revealed that people with AFib who drank one cup of coffee/day were nearly 20% less likely to die than non-coffee drinkers.[*]

4. Slash the Risk of Heart Failure

Heart failure occurs when your ticker weakens or stiffens, hindering its ability to pump enough blood for your body's needs. 

Compared to non-coffee drinkers, those who drank one cup/day in one study reduced their heart failure risk by up to 12%. Those who drank two cups? They diminished their risk by up to 30%.[*]

Two or three cups of coffee/day seems to be the sweet spot. This number has been associated with fewer incidences of artery blockages, stroke, and heart failure.[*]

5. Promote Longevity

Heart disease is the leading cause of death for Americans.[*]

Researchers in the largest analysis of coffee’s potential role in heart disease came to an enlightening conclusion: coffee should be included as part of a healthy diet for people with and without heart disease.[*

Thanks to its ability to reduce oxidative stress and inflammation, coffee may actually be the fountain of youth and lower your risk of death.[*] Don’t believe us? The science speaks for itself:

  • Multiple meta-analyses highlight how caffeinated coffee and decaffeinated coffee are linked to lower risks of all-cause mortality, including cardiovascular-related death.[*][*][*][*
  • Coffee consumption in older populations has been associated with a 43% reduction in heart disease–related deaths.[*]
  • In a study of 450k healthy people (average age 58) with a 12-year follow-up, those who drank 2–3 cups of coffee/day had the lowest risk of cardiovascular disease, heart failure, and early death compared to non-coffee drinkers.[*][*]

Bottom line: Coffee is safe and advantageous for healthy people as well as people with hypertension, cardiovascular disease, heart failure, and arrhythmias, making coffee restriction unwarranted.[*]

How To Caffeinate for a Happy Ticker

So, what kind of coffee is good for the heart? All types of coffee — from freshly ground to decaf and instant coffee — have been praised for their heart-boosting abilities.[*] But if you want the healthiest mug:

Start with the best beans. Look for non-GMO and sustainably grown coffee beans, which tend to preserve more of those beneficial antioxidants.

Keep it black. Sugar, artificial sweeteners, and processed creamers skyrocket inflammation, negating the effects of coffee antioxidants. Unhealthy java additions also bump your risks of weight gain, high blood sugar levels, and other heart disease risk factors.[*

Not a fan of black coffee? Kick your sugar habit with these sugar-free coffee tips!

Know your limits. The FDA says it’s generally safe to consume 400 mg of caffeine per day.[*] Excessive caffeine intake in a short period can lead to anxiety, insomnia, and even heart palpitations. So, skip the energy drink guzzling.

Make coffee a supportive player in your heart health strategy. Coffee isn’t a magic cure-all. It works best when combined with a healthy eating plan, regular exercise, and stress management techniques if you’re striving for an optimal ticker.

Support Your Heart (& Brain!) With IQJOE

Did you know that instant coffee delivers more antioxidants than both brewed coffee and espresso?[*][*] Besides being the quickest, easiest, and cleanest route for your caffeine fix, it may also be the most heart-friendly.

That’s why we created IQJOE. Each sleeve of our travel-friendly instant mushroom coffee contains:

  • Organic caffeine from green coffee and Brazilian coffee. Green coffee was found to significantly reduce systolic blood pressure.[*] Non-GMO Brazilian coffee is more flavorful, sustainable, and ideal for long-lasting, crash-proof, jitter-free energy.
  • Magtein®️ (Magnesium L-Threonate). Magtein crosses the blood-brain barrier, giving your brew a unique leg-up in the mental performance department. Studies show it may enhance your focus, learning, and memory while supporting more zen vibes.[*][*][*]
  • 8X-concentrated Lion's Mane extract. This adaptogen helps lower stress, so you can get out of your head and be more productive. We love how this “smart mushroom” elevates our brain power and even helps grow new brain cells.[*][*][*

Unlike other instant coffees, IQJOE is a clean ingredient dream. It’s keto, vegan, kosher, and gluten-, dairy-, and soy-free to fit nearly every heart-healthy diet.

🍄 Don’t worry, it doesn’t take like mushrooms. Our IQJOE Original Black, Vanilla Spice, Toasted Hazelnut, and Caffè Mocha flavors treat your heart, brain, and taste buds right.

Writing A Love Letter To Coffee, From Your Heart ❣️

Coffee makes an excellent addition to any heart-healthy lifestyle. It may protect your ticker from damaging inflammation, diminish your risk of heart disease, and help you fend off the Grim Reaper. Match made in heaven? We swipe right!

💗 Show your heart a little extra love with the IQJOE Variety Pack! It’s the perfect way to try all four flavors and say sayonara to flavor FOMO!


Written by Lauren Ciccarelli, a writer and research geek passionate about low-carb nutrition, mental health, and meditation. Her 2,500+ articles empower doers with science-backed tips for leveled-up living.