Coffee: Facts and Controversies

Gale M. Etherton, Mahendr S. Kochar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Scopus citations


In this article, we review current literature on coffee, both regular and decaffeinated, and its potential effects in humans. Moderate coffee consumption is believed to have no persistent effect on blood pressure. Large intake of coffee may increase total cholesterol levels; boiled coffee increases cholesterol levels more than filtered coffee. Consuming more than four cups per day may be associated with increased risk of acute myocardial infarction. There appears to be an association between urinary bladder cancer and coffee consumption. No association was found between ingestion of coffee and incidence of duodenal ulcer and ulcerative colitis. Increased coffee consumption by pregnant women appears to decrease fetal birth weight. Fetal heart rate, respiration, and both maternal and fetal anemia are increased with coffee consumption but coffee has not been shown to be teratogenic. Coffee consumption appears to pose no particular threat in most people if consumed in moderation. Naturally decaffeinated, filter-brewed coffee further diminishes its potential harmful effects.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)317-322
Number of pages6
JournalArchives of Family Medicine
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 1993
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Medicine


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