If you don’t have time to read this and want to cut straight to the chase: the good news is that drinking moderate amounts of coffee (3-5 cups per day) is good for you!
(Now go get yourself a cup of the good stuff and read the rest of this.)
Opinions have varied over the years as to whether or not coffee consumption is good or bad for you, but recently, there seems to be more in the way of scientific evidence to suggest that coffee is, indeed, beneficial to your health.
If you’re like me and you relish the time of day you get to drink coffee, that’s great news!
I drink it without milk or sugar, simply because I love the taste of coffee. Chucking in milk, sugar or some vanilla syrup seems like sacrilege to me. And knowing that this great taste comes with a whole range of scientifically-backed health benefits is a huge plus.
So next time someone knocks you for drinking too much coffee, hit them with these rebuttals!
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1. Coffee is an excellent source of antioxidants
Coffee contains large amounts of antioxidants – more than black and green tea and red wine. These can protect your body from damage caused by free radicals and may help reduce the risk of several diseases.
2. Coffee can increase longevity
Yep – if you want to stick around for a bit longer in this life, coffee might help you to do that!
One study found that drinking coffee could significantly lower a person’s risk of mortality, due to the health benefits it brings.
Be aware though that drinking coffee doesn’t cancel out the effect of bad habits like smoking. If only it were that easy . . .
3. Coffee has neuro-protective and anti-inflammatory properties
Several studies show that coffee drinkers may have a 65% lower risk of developing Alzheimer’s and a much lower risk of developing Parkinson’s Disease.
4. Coffee can improve energy levels
It’s pretty common knowledge that coffee contains caffeine, which is a stimulant and has the effect of making us feeling less tired and increasing energy levels. It can also improve mood and general cognitive function. Hell, we all need a bit of that.
5. Coffee can increase your metabolism
This in layman’s terms means that it can help you burn fat! Caffeine is one of the very few natural substances to have been scientifically proven to assist in fat-burning.
Now get of the couch, drink some coffee and do some rope jumping.
6. Coffee may lower the risk of diabetes
Studies have shown that coffee drinkers have up to a 50% lower risk of developing Type II Diabetes. Type II Diabetes is a global epidemic, affecting over 300 million people.
7. Coffee may project the liver
There is growing evidence that coffee consumption may protect against liver disease.
In fact, research goes as far to say that coffee consumption may even undo damage associated with overindulging in food and alcohol.
8. Coffee lowers risk of some types of cancer
Despite recent warnings about acrylamide, there are studies demonstrating that coffee consumption can lower the risk of liver, colorectal and prostate cancer.
9. Coffee lowers risk of heart disease and stroke
Several studies have suggested that drinking coffee in moderate amounts may be associated with reduced risk of heart failure and stroke.
10. Coffee can make you happier
In addition to increasing your energy levels, a cup of coffee has been shown to improve your mood. There are studies that have demonstrated this!
And the bonus benefit . . .
Bonus: Coffee tastes damn gooood!
To keep things balanced, let’s look at some of the known downsides of coffee consumption.
Drinking coffee can cause anxiety, heart arrhythmia and insomnia in some people. If you have any of these symptoms after a cup of coffee, you might be sensitive to it, so drink something else instead.
Caffeine is addictive and stopping can cause withdrawal symptoms.
Coffee is a diuretic (which means it promotes an increased production of urine), so it can lead to dehydration and headaches, so make sure you drink plenty of water too.
There are always going to be people who are sensitive to caffeine or have a pre-existing condition that makes drinking coffee a bad idea, but it appears that a cup of joe for the average Joe can bring some important health benefits.
But don’t confuse coffee with all the calorie-laden stuff you can get at your local coffee shop.
It needs to be black coffee with no more than a dash of milk to get the full benefits. You might even want to try a Bulletproof coffee.
Basically, if you are a coffee-drinker and you are currently drinking a few cups a day, it is probably doing you more good than harm, so don’t feel you need to switch to green tea just yet.
Right, I don’t know about you, but I fancy another cup of freshly-brewed black coffee. We use an awesome Bialetti Moka pot like this one! 😉
If you are interested in reading up on the science, here are some selected studies and reports: