Medicine: Coffee Alert

Decaf brews raise cholesterol

People who have switched to decaffeinated coffee for health reasons got a nasty jolt last week. At a meeting of the American Heart Association, Stanford researchers reported a study of 181 middle-aged men showing that among those who exchanged decaffeinated for regular coffee, levels of harmful LDL cholesterol rose an average of 7%. That could increase the risk of heart attack an estimated 12%.

What causes the jump in LDL? Stanford's Dr. Robert Superko suggests the answer may lie in the coffee beans. Regular coffee uses the milder arabica variety, while decaf brews rely on the stronger robusta beans. More research...

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