DRINKING just one cup of coffee a week can reduce your risk of heart failure by seven per cent, new research suggests.
Good news for coffee lovers; new data shows one to six cups of coffee per day is linked to a healthier heart.
The prior research was first introduced at American Heart Association (AHA) Scientific Sessions held in Anaheim, California.
The heart study has tracked the health of thousands of participants since the 1940s contributing to a wealth of data made available to researchers. The association between drinking coffee and a decreased risk of heart failure and stroke was consistently noted in all three studies.
Machine learning, works by finding associations within data, much in the same way that online shopping sites predict products you may like based on your shopping history, and is one type of big data analysis.
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First author Laura Stevens, from the University of Colorado, US, said: "Our findings suggest that machine learning could help us identify additional factors to improve existing risk assessment models". Thus, using the machine learning to add in new factors could help make the models more efficient and accurate.
The researchers found that each additional cup of coffee drunk per week was associated with a lower risk of heart failure and stroke compared to those who consumed no coffee.
Previous studies have indicated that people's dietary pattern plays a vital role in increasing or reducing the risk of atherosclerosis, a condition characterized by a gradual narrowing of the arteries, resulting in heart failure, stroke, and heart attack.
But, she says, more research is needed before we can be confident about how coffee affects our heart health.
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The researchers even determined that whether someone drank coffee or not could help predict their eventual risk of heart failure or stroke.
Senior author Professor David Kao added: "By including coffee in the model, the prediction accuracy increased by four percent".
The findings about coffee consumption came about after re-analysing data from the Framingham Heart Study, a long-running USA investigation of heart disease risk factors involving thousands of participants.
Another potential risk factor identified by machine-learning analysis was red-meat consumption, although the association between red meat consumption and heart failure or stroke was less clear.
Next time you're wondering whether or not to have that extra cup of coffee, think about the health benefits it could offer you. Coffee might also help protect people from Parkinson's, diabetes, liver disease and other diseases and ailments, according to the Mayo Clinic.
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A press release stressed that this type of study demonstrates an observed association, but does not prove cause and effect.