Coffee consumption and calcified atherosclerotic plaques in the coronary arteries: The NHLBI Family Heart Study

Yash R. Patel, Taraka V. Gadiraju, R. Curtis Ellison, Steven C. Hunt, John Jeffrey Carr, Gerardo Heiss, Donna K. Arnett, James S. Pankow, J. Michael Gaziano, Luc Djoussé

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


Background & aims While a recent meta-analysis of prospective studies reported that coffee consumption is associated with a lower risk of cardiovascular disease mortality, limited and inconsistent data are available on the relation of coffee intake with subclinical disease. Thus, the aim of the present study was to see the association of coffee consumption with the prevalence of atherosclerotic plaque in the coronary arteries in NHLBI Family Heart Study. Methods In a cross-sectional design, we studied 1929 participants of the NHLBI Family Heart Study without known coronary heart disease. Coffee consumption was assessed by a semi-quantitative food frequency questionnaire and coronary-artery calcium (CAC) was measured by cardiac computed tomography. We defined prevalent CAC as an Agatston score of ≥100 and used generalized estimating equations to calculate prevalence ratios of CAC as well as a sensitivity analysis at a range of cutpoints for CAC. Results Mean age was 56.7 years and 59% of the study subjects were female. In adjusted analysis for age, sex, BMI, smoking, alcohol, physical activity, field center, and energy intake, prevalence ratio (95% CI) for CAC was 1.0 (reference), 0.92 (0.57–1.49), 1.34 (0.86–2.08), 1.30 (0.84–2.02), and 0.99 (0.60–1.64) for coffee consumption of almost never, <1/day, 1/day, 2–3/day, and ≥4 cups/day, respectively. In a sensitivity analysis, there was no evidence of association between coffee consumption and prevalent CAC when CAC cut points of 0, 50, 150, 200, and 300 were used. Conclusions These data do not provide evidence for an association between coffee consumption and prevalent CAC in adult men and women.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)18-21
Number of pages4
JournalClinical Nutrition ESPEN
StatePublished - Feb 1 2017

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This study was supported by grants from the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (U01 HL067901, U01 HL067897, U01 HL067896, U01 HL067894, U01 HL067893, U01 HL067900, and U01 HL067899).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2016 European Society for Clinical Nutrition and Metabolism


  • Atherosclerosis
  • Coffee consumption
  • Coronary artery calcium
  • Epidemiology
  • Nutrition

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Nutrition and Dietetics


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