Diet & Nutrition

The Morning Elixir: Is Coffee Good or Bad for your Health?

Coffee, that delicious beverage you can have any time, anywhere. Whether you prefer to have a mug on your way to work or to take a latte while relaxing after your working day, it’s hard to imagine a day without it. The most popular hot beverage in many parts of the world, coffee has made its way into our culture, improving our mood and giving us energy. But did you know it has a lot more benefits than it seems at first glance?

For years, many people believed coffee contained substances that could cause cancer (0), but recent research proves otherwise. Today, many nutritionists include the moderate consumption of coffee as part of a healthy diet. A steaming cup of fresh coffee can bring warmth on a chilly day and help you muster the energy to start your daily tasks while protecting you from certain diseases, boosting your athletic performance, and even giving you happiness. Would you like to know more about what this magical beverage can do for you? Here we present you with 7 amazing benefits coffee can bring about for your health!

Where Do Coffee Beans Come From? 

Who doesn’t know someone who drinks coffee every day? Most people seem not to be able to function without a cup of this dark, delicious, invigorating liquid every day. But where does this morning elixir come from? 

Coffee is prepared out of coffee beans (or seeds) that grow in cherries inside coffee plants that only grow in certain weather conditions. Most of the world’s coffee beans are grown in what is known as the Bean Belt, an area around the equator that comprises countries like Java or Sumatra in Asia and Brazil, Perú, and Colombia in South America. 

There are many types of coffee and all of them have specific harvesting and roasting processes. The most famous coffee today is grown in Brazil and Colombia. By the 1880s, Brazil had become the largest coffee exporter in the world, with the most common varieties being Bourbon, Typica, and Caturra. Today, many high-quality espresso blends are made out of Brazilian coffee beans, which are known for being mild and not overly bitter. 

Meanwhile, Colombia is also well-known for having the most delicious coffee. The country meets many of the conditions for growing the best coffee beans: volcanic soil, free of frost, receiving around 80 inches of rain a year. Their harvest process is also a game-changer, as they usually use the cherry-picking method to select only fully ripe cherries. Most people acknowledge Cofea Arabica as the best-quality species of coffee and with the best flavour, and this is the type of variety that is usually grown in Colombia. Is it time for a Colombian coffee break yet?  

What’s the Best Time to Drink Coffee? 

You may think that reaching out for a caffeinated beverage as soon as you wake up is best, but is that true? Research shows otherwise. When we wake up, our cortisol hormone (a substance that enhances alertness and regulates our metabolism) is at its peak 30 minutes after you wake up (1). Experts claim that the best time to take your delicious cup of coffee is mid-morning, when your cortisol levels have gone down. If you wake up around 7 a.m., then this time is around 10 a.m.

Plus, many people believe that drinking coffee on an empty stomach can be harmful and cause irritation, heartburn, ulcers, and indigestion. While research has not been conclusive, some studies prove that black coffee is bitter enough to stimulate the overproduction of stomach acid (2), which is harmful if you have no food in your stomach to prevent the acid from damaging your lining. But the truth is that only a small proportion of people seem to be sensitive to coffee, so pay attention to how your body responds and adjust your intake of this magic elixir accordingly!

Top 7 Health Benefits of Coffee

Millions and millions of people consume coffee on a daily basis all over the planet. In the USA only, the coffee industry moves around $225 billion.

Impressive, right? And the best part is that the coffee industry is not only profitable but also healthy, as this amazing beverage brings about a lot of positive effects on our bodies and minds. You will be getting a lot more from your favorite morning coffee than you thought, as black coffee is full of substances that can guard you against diseases and even improve your physical performance. Let’s examine the top 7 health benefits of coffee below:

1. It Can Help You Burn Fat

In addition to stimulating your nervous system, a cup of coffee can help you burn more fat when working out. This happens because caffeine can help your body break down fat cells by increasing the epinephrine in your blood (3). Of course, the fat won’t just go away as if by magic but coffee can certainly support you in your journey towards weight loss. 

2. It Contains Essential Nutrients and Is Extremely High in Antioxidants

Coffee beans are rich in antioxidants like polyphenols, important substances that protect you against free radicals and several diseases, such as type 2 diabetes (4). These chemicals can also dampen inflammation and reduce the risk of certain disorders, like cardiovascular disease. A single cup of coffee contains more antioxidants than blueberries or oranges!  

3. It Can Improve Physical Performance

Forget about buying expensive pills to enhance your workouts and fire up that coffee pot! A warm cup of black coffee will stimulate your nervous system and help you fight back drowsiness and fatigue when working out. Many studies have discovered that around 400 mg of caffeine can increase strength and endurance in athletes, helping them run almost 3 km more than the group that didn’t take any coffee (5). So, a couple of cups of coffee can become your go-to supplements, even if you are not an Olympic athlete at the moment! 

4. It May Lower Your Risk of Type 2 Diabetes

Coffee beans seem to contain certain substances that reduce the risk of suffering from type 2 diabetes. These are caffeine, caffeic acid, and chlorogenic acid, which can inhibit the formation of a toxic protein called hIAPP amyloid and improve the metabolism of sugar (6).   

5. It Can Help You Fight Depression and Make You Happier

Caffeine has anti-inflammatory properties that can help those who are fighting against depression. How does this work? Simply put, caffeine prevents adenosine (a chemical that causes fatigue and sadness) from binding with your brain receptors. Additionally, it stimulates neurotransmitters in our brain and increases the amount of dopamine in your blood, which is the chemical responsible for making us feel satisfied and happy. 

6. It May Lower the Risk of Heart Failure

Here’s another good reason to keep on drinking coffee daily: caffeinated drinks can help you keep your heart healthy. As shown by research, the more cups people drink, the lower the risk of heart failure, stroke, and coronary heart disease (7). 

7. It May Help You Live Longer 

Coffee is not only part of your morning routine but it may also be part of leading a longer, healthier life. After examining all these amazing benefits, it’s only natural that coffee can help you live longer (and more happily!). Coffee beans have hundreds of compounds and researchers have a hard time pinpointing exactly which are the ones that benefit our lives so thoroughly. But some large studies have shown that drinking coffee is associated with a 20-26% reduced risk of death, particularly in people with type 2 diabetes (8). While there’s not a clear-cut cause-effect relationship, researchers believe there’s a strong bond between having coffee daily and living longer. 

How Much Coffee Should You Drink?

Coffee is indeed good for your health, but how much is the optimal amount to take daily without suffering from side effects? According to several researchers, the maximum intake of caffeine you should take is 400 mm (9). Considering that an ordinary cup usually contains around 95 milligrams of caffeine, the optimal number of cups per day would be around 3-4. 

Of course, this depends on the person. If you are pregnant, for example, the optimal intake of caffeine is likely to be much lower. Make sure you consult with your doctor before adding it to your diet. 

Some Coffee disadvantages  

Every person is different when it comes to tolerance of certain foods and beverages, and coffee is no exception. Some people can be more or less sensitive to the stimulatory properties of coffee than others. Maybe you realize that you find trouble sleeping after taking 2 cups while a friend can take 4 cups a day without noticing any side effects. It all comes down to your tolerance. 

Here are some of the most common disadvantages of taking caffeine daily:

  • Consuming too much caffeine can cause insomnia and restlessness, anxiety, heart palpitations, or even panic attacks (10). Consult with your physician if you have experienced any of those side effects. Plus, if you feel that coffee is affecting the quality of your sleep, try not to take it after 4-5 pm. 
  • Coffee can also raise your blood pressure for up to three hours after consuming it. While it’s unclear what causes this short spike (and it varies from person to person), it’s important to take this side effect into account in case blood pressure is a concern for you.
  • Some people may even become addicted to caffeine. This substance, unfortunately, causes resistance, so you’ll need to drink more cups to have the same effects as before (11).   

If you find that coffee has too many side effects in your case but would like to experience its benefits in terms of energy, for example, you can try out health supplements like our Ketone PRO4. This is a natural way of reducing your stress and anxiety levels while boosting your energy all day long!

Conclusion

Coffee is certainly one of the most popular beverages all around the globe and for the right reasons! Not only is it delicious and energizing, but it can help you burn fat, protect you against certain diseases, and make you happier than ever! Moreover, research shows that you may not even be taking as much coffee as you could to enjoy all the health benefits caffeine has to offer. If you enjoy its taste and tolerate caffeine well, don’t hesitate to pour yourself more than one cup a day! 

Just keep in mind that, delicious as it may be, coffee can also bring about some negative effects, like insomnia or even addiction. The key is moderation and listening to what your body says to you to keep on enjoying that freshly brewed morning coffee without any guilt! And in case you’d like to find other solutions for your health to look and feel your best, you can take our Free Comprehensive Health Assessment. You’ll get a personalized recommendation on which products you can take to complement your morning routine in just minutes!

 

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