Association between coffee consumption with serum lipid profile in ELSA-Brasil study: a metabolomic approach

Eur J Nutr. 2022 Dec;61(8):4205-4214. doi: 10.1007/s00394-022-02946-4. Epub 2022 Jul 27.


Purpose: This study evaluated the association between coffee consumption and serum lipid profile in the Brazilian Longitudinal Study of Adult Health (ELSA-Brasil).

Methods: This is a cross-sectional study on baseline data from participants of the cohort ELSA-Brasil. Only participants of São Paulo Research Center who underwent a nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy examination of lipid profile were included (N = 4736). Coffee intake was categorized into four categories (cups/day, in reference cup size of 50 mL, which is the household measure adopted in Brazil): never/almost never, ≤ 1, 1-3, and > 3. Serum lipid profile [i.e., Total Cholesterol (TC), Total Triglycerides (TG), Very Low-Density Lipoprotein-cholesterol (VLDL-c), Low-Density Lipoprotein-cholesterol (LDL-c), High-Density Lipoprotein-cholesterol (HDL-c), Triglyceride-rich Lipoprotein Particles (TRLP) and subfractions particles] was analyzed. To estimate the effect of coffee consumption on serum lipid profile, multivariate Generalized Linear Models were performed.

Results: Compared to participants who never or almost never drink coffee, individuals who consumed more than 3 cups/day showed an increase in concentrations of TC (β: 4.13; 95% CI 0.81, 7.45), TG (β: 9.53; 95% CI 1.65, 17.42), VLDL-c (β: 1.90; 95% CI 0.38, 3.42), TRLP (β: 8.42; 95% CI 1.24, 15.60), and Very Small-TRLP and Medium-TRLP subfractions (β: 7.36; 95% CI 0.21, 14.51; β: 2.53; 95% CI 0.89, 4.16, respectively), but not with HDL-c and LDL-c. Among individuals with low (≤ 1 cup/day) and moderate (1-3 cups/day) coffee consumption, no significant associations with lipids was observed.

Conclusion: High coffee consumption (more than 3 cups per day) was associated with an increase in serum lipids, namely TC, TG, VLDL-c, and TRL particles, highlighting the importance of a moderate consumption of this beverage.

Keywords: Coffee; ELSA-Brasil; Generalized linear models; Lipid profile; Metabolomic; Nuclear magnetic resonance.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Brazil
  • Cholesterol, HDL
  • Cholesterol, LDL
  • Coffee*
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Humans
  • Longitudinal Studies
  • Triglycerides


  • Coffee
  • Cholesterol, LDL
  • Triglycerides
  • Cholesterol, HDL