The effect of coffee on your cholesterol!

Coffee and cholesterol


You hear about it here and there. Coffee would have an effect on your cholesterol... But what exactly is this?

The Dutch drink an average of 4 cups of coffee per day, which is not necessarily unhealthy. In this blog we will go into this in more detail.

Is coffee healthy?

Earlier I wrote a blog about 4 reasons why coffee is healthy, with sources!

Then I read another interesting result from a large-scale Annals of Internal Medicine study of 185,000 people that drinking 2 to 4 cups of coffee a day led to an 18% reduction in premature death.

That sounds like pretty positive to my ears!

Among other things, the risk of heart disease decreases after just 1 cup of coffee a day, and this of course has a relationship with cholesterol... So time to dive into the numbers!

Related: Is coffee good for your health?

Health Council

2 conclusions of the Health Council in 2015:

  • 2-4 cups a day: 10% lower risk of coronary heart disease and stroke.
  • 5 cups a day: 30% lower risk of type 2 diabetes.

Less tired

The effects of caffeine are nice! It has a stimulating effect and the feeling of tiredness decreases. Who can't use this?

However, these effects do not become greater if you drink a lot more coffee. So in principle you could get rid of this stimulating effect with, for example, 2 cups of coffee per day.

If you drink a lot more, this can lead to headaches, dizziness, irritability, etc.


Cafestol is a component of brewed coffee, and this cafestol in particular raises the bad cholesterol in the blood called LDL.

We are of course not a medical institution, but these kinds of effects will mainly be negative for people who already have too high a cholesterol level or people who are sensitive to this.

How much Cafestol there is in a cup of coffee depends on the brewing method. Roughly speaking, it can be said that if the coffee is filtered with a paper filter (quick filter, Hario V60 , Chemex, Aeropress, coffee pads), all the Cafestol remains in this paper filter.

Read also: All types of coffee explained.

So if you drink the coffee in one of the above ways, there is hardly any effect on the cholesterol level and you do not have to take this into account.

Note, for example, that Cafetiere/French Press is also a filter technique, but without a paper filter. Here you will get Cafestol through again.

It is also striking that coffee capsules / Nespresso cups also contain relatively much Cafestol and it is therefore better not to drink too much of this.

The consumer association has made it a handy overview with figures per brewing method:

brewing method


Maximum number of cups per day**

Filter coffee Yes 0.1 unlimited
Coffee pods Yes 0.1 unlimited
Vending machine with liquid coffee concentrate Yes 0.1 unlimited
Machine with a paper filter *** Yes 0.1 unlimited
Instant coffee Yes 0.2 unlimited
Coffee capsules 1 2-3
Italian espresso pot (Moka) 1 2-3
Machine with a metal or nylon filter *** 1 2-3
Espresso 1.5 2-3
Cafetiere (French press) 3.5 1
Turkish/Greek coffee 4 1

* With a paper filter.

** Number of cups you can drink before it has a significant effect on cholesterol levels.

*** It is often not possible to see on the outside of a machine which type of filter is used. The brewing method can be found out from the person who fills it or from the supplier.

Source: Consumer Association