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Drinking an extra cup of coffee 'can double stroke risk'

News18test sharma |

Updated: December 12, 2010, 4:51 PM IST
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 Drinking an extra cup of coffee 'can double stroke risk'
Coffee buffs - Drinking the beverage in moderation is okay, but upping its intake may double your risk of a stroke.

London: Coffee buffs, please note drinking the beverage in moderation is okay, but upping its intake may double your risk of a stroke, says a new study.

Researchers have found that coffee drinkers who normally have no more than one a day are twice as likely to suffer a blood clot on the brain if they increase that by an extra cup or two, the 'Daily Mail' reported.

The risk of a potentially fatal stroke was greatest in the hour following consumption. After two hours, the coffee's effects had worn off and the risk of a stroke passed; but the danger lies in occasional exposure to relatively higher levels of caffeine, say the researchers.

According to them, this could be because coffee-lovers who get through several cups a day become desensitised to the effects of caffeine, such as raised blood pressure, stiffening of the arteries and higher norepinephrine levels, a stress
hormone that increases heart rate.

The researchers have based their findings on an analysis 400 stroke victims, comparing each one's intake of coffee in the hour before their stroke with their usual consumption over the previous year. Around one in ten had
drunk coffee less than an hour before falling ill.

"Consumption was linked with a risk of stroke in the subsequent hour twice as high as during the periods where there was no coffee consumption," the researchers at Harvard Medical School in Boston said.

However, they found no such association with caffeinated tea or cola. The risk is mainly confined to those who exceed their normal intake of a cup or so a day.

The findings have been published in the 'Neurology' journal.

First Published: December 12, 2010, 4:51 PM IST
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