ZocdocAnswersDoes drinking coffee cause high blood pressure?

Question

Does drinking coffee cause high blood pressure?

High blood pressure runs in my family. I drink a lot of coffee. Is this bad? Does drinking coffee cause high blood pressure?

Answer

High blood pressure is an extremely common problem. In fact, nearly 1/3 people will develop high blood pressure at some point in their lives. For most people, the cause of their high blood pressure is never really known. The name of this condition is essential hypertension, which basically means high blood pressure with no known cause. For those with high blood pressure, it is always a good idea to avoid things that raise blood pressure, and do things that lower it. For example if you cut out most of the salt in your diet, you can reduce your blood pressure by a few points. If you increase the amount of fruits and vegetables in your diet, you will also lower your blood pressure. Coffee contains caffeine which is a stimulant and can cause your blood vessels to contract and increase your blood pressure. However, this amount is small, and may or may not be significant. In addition, most people that do have a problem with caffeine increasing their blood pressure consume many cups of coffee or cans of soda a day. Drinking coffee in moderation is not really that harmful. The best person to help you make these decisions is your primary care physician. He or she can discuss this issue with your own past medical and family history in mind.

This answer is for general informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice.

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