Coffee is one of the most frequently consumed beverages worldwide and has been found to have a wide assortment of health benefits. Although habitual coffee consumption is associated with a lower incidence of chronic kidney disease, an association between coffee and acute kidney injury (AKI) has not yet been revealed.
In the Atherosclerosis Risk in Communities (ARIC) Study, a prospective cohort study of 14,207 adults aged 45 to 64 years, coffee consumption (cups/d) was assessed at a single visit via food frequency questionnaires and compared with incident AKI defined by hospitalization with an AKI-related International Classification of Diseases code.
In ARIC, there were 1694 cases of incident AKI in a median of 24 follow-up years. Higher coffee consumption was associated with lower AKI risk versus no consumption (hazard ratio [HR] <1 cup/d: 0.92 [95% CI: 0.79-1.08]; 1 cup/d: 1.08 [95% CI: 0.94-1.24]; 2 to 3 cups/d: 0.83 [95% CI: 0.72-0.95]; >3 cups/d: 0.83 [95% CI: 0.71-0.96]; reference: never, P = 0.003). Trends for AKI risk across coffee categories remained significant after multivariable adjustment for age, sex, race-center, education, total daily energy intake, physical activity, smoking, alcohol intake, diet quality (Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension [DASH] score), systolic blood pressure (BP), diabetes status, use of antihypertensive agents, estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR), and body mass index (BMI) (P = 0.02).
Higher coffee intake was associated with a lower risk of incident AKI and could present an opportunity for cardiorenal protection through diet. Further evaluation of the physiological mechanisms underlying the cardiorenal protective effects of coffee consumption is necessary.