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Role of Coffee in Inflammation

Coffee is the most consumed beverage and is rich in various compounds beneficial for health.(1)

It helps in reducing inflammation in some people.

What is Inflammation?

Inflammation is not just swelling but the body’s response to things that try to hurt it. Swelling occurs as a result of an inflammatory response that takes place and due to the damaging toxins, trauma, bacteria, and the release of harmful chemicals. These chemicals cause blood vessels to leak into the body tissue that leads to swelling.

Inflammation is of two types:

  1. Acute Inflammation: This inflammation starts rapidly and becomes severe in a short period of time. It is caused due to trauma, microbial invasion, and noxious compounds. It lasts for only 2-6 weeks
  2. Chronic Inflammation: It starts slowly and stays in the body for much longer. It can last even for few months depending on the diet.

Effects of Coffee On Inflammation

Effects of Coffee On Inflammation

Coffee may help reduce inflammation in few individuals. A study shows regular coffee drinkers have low levels of inflammatory markers than non-coffee drinkers.(2)

Another study found coffee drinkers to have a 6% increase in the inflammatory markers when asked to refrain from coffee for a month. There was a reduction of 8-6% in the inflammatory markers when asked to consume 32 and 64 ounces of coffee per day from the same time period.(3)

A review of 15 studies done to see the effect of coffee, caffeine, and coffee-related products on inflammatory markers found that low, medium or high coffee intake has anti-inflammatory effects.(4)

However, coffee may increase inflammation in a few people. The individual differences in genetics or other factors may influence the effect of coffee on inflammation.(4,5) There are numerous signs of inflammation such as infection, fatigue, pain, digestive issues. If any of these arise after drinking coffee, you can stop the intake to see if it helps.

Effects of Decaf Coffee

  • There are not many studies to see the effect of decaf and caffeinated coffee on inflammation.
  • A review reported that coffee can help reduce inflammation, but caffeine products do not.(4)
  • This shows that compounds other than caffeine are responsible for their anti-inflammatory effect.
  • Coffee is expected to offer anti-inflammatory benefits but more research is needed on it.

Can Coffee Cause Inflammation

Despite the studies indicating its anti-inflammatory effects, coffee can still pose a risk of inflammation.

Caffeine present in coffee is a stimulant, which if consumed in excess can have positive as well as negative effects.

The negative effects include:

  • Increased risk of high blood pressure
  • Increased homocysteine
  • Increased insulin
  • Increase in cholesterol level.
  • Coffee is a popular drink that is rich in antioxidant compounds.

It has positive effects on inflammation even if consumed in small amounts. It may also lower the risk of certain conditions including heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and certain cancers. Coffee may increase inflammation in a few.

Consider reducing the intake of Coffee, if you see the sign of inflammation showing up after drinking it.

Also Read:

Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA
Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA
Written, Edited or Reviewed By: Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA Pain Assist Inc. This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer
Last Modified On:April 5, 2021

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