Coffee and its benefits on health

A warm mug of a freshly brewed cup of joe is a saving grace for most people who find it hard to push through an extremely monotonous day. 

Coffee is an unbeatable energizer whether it is for getting a jolt of energy during a sluggish morning or for taming the yawn monster during lazy work hours. 

But between the cups of coffee you enjoy throughout your day and over the weeks, have you ever wondered if it has any health benefits at all or if it does more harm than good?

If you are someone who likes to start their day on the right note with a ritualistic freshly brewed cup of joe in the morning, these concerns are quite daunting. 

But don’t throw your cup of coffee away just now, as your favorite morning beverage has more benefits than you may think of. 

From a jolt of energy during a lazy morning to several benefits encompassing physical, mental, and even emotional health, coffee has many health benefits. 

To help you further understand coffee and its benefits on health, here is all need to know about coffee, its nutritional value, its types, and the appropriate amount of consumption.

What is coffee?

Coffee, we all drink and love it but often fall short of words to describe it. In simpler terms, coffee is a common beverage made from ground and brewed coffee beans which are consumed in both cold and hot forms. 

While coffee beans closely resemble a regular bean, they are quite far from it, in fact, the coffee bean is a seed found inside a coffee cherry fruit which is often found on a coffee plant.

A fascinating fact about the coffee plant is that it can live up to about 100 years and produces coffee cherries between 7 and 20 years. 

Between these years a coffee plant can produce over 10 pounds of coffee cherries, which are then left to ripe full-term until they are bright-red and ready to harvest. 

In terms of coffee’s history, some legends denote coffee was discovered in Ethiopia dating back to 850 AD by an Ethiopian herdsman named Kaldi.

Kaldi stumbled across the coffee bush when he noticed his goats jump excitedly around a red berry bush.

The herdsman himself experienced a gush of elation and a jolt of energy upon consuming one berry from the plant and brought the berries along to share with the monks. 

The monks came up with the idea to turn the red and ripe berries into a warm beverage, and this was the birth of coffee. 

Later in the years, drinking coffee berries as an energizer spread in some parts of Saudi Arabia and Europe.

Are there Different Types of Coffee?

As a matter of fact, yes there is a diverse range of coffee recipes, types, and variations available if you don’t prefer drinking coffee straight-up black. 

From decaffeinated coffee to thick frothy cappuccinos, there is something in the world of coffee suitable for your tastebuds. 

Each variation of coffee brings a different taste as well as experience and it is important to learn about their ratios or recipes to fully determine which coffee type is best for you:

1. Regular Balck Coffee:

Regular Black coffee is a plain black brewed coffee without sugar, creamers, or milk.

Regular Black Coffee can be served in both hot or cold forms, but it is generally consumed hot. Black Coffee can be found in both regular or caffeinated and decaffeinated forms.

2. Decaffeinated coffee:

Decaffeinated coffee is essentially brewed coffee beans that are stripped from the caffeine stimulant. 

Caffeine is a natural stimulant found in coffee beans that are used as a cognitive enhancer or energizer. 

When passed through the decaffeination process, these stimulants are removed from the coffee. 

The Decaffeination process involves washing the coffee beans with a mixture of methylene chloride or ethyl acetate which dissolve the substance and extract caffeine from the coffee beans.

3. Espresso:

Espressos are stronger and more concentrated than regular black coffee and are often consumed in the form of a coffee shot. 

Espressos are made from steaming ground coffee beans and have a thicker consistency than regular coffee. 

Espresso is often used as a base for most coffee recipes and types but is also enjoyed on its own in the form of a coffee shot by most coffee fanatics.

4. Americano:

Americano is a diluted variant of espressos which is made from one shot of espresso in a cup or mug of hot water.

5. Cappuccino:

A cappuccino is a milkier and creamer version of espresso that incorporates one shot of espresso and equal portions of steamed milk as well as milk foam or froth.

6. Cafe Mocha:

If you are in search of a chocolaty treat, then cafe Mocha may be your type of coffee to enjoy. 

Cafe Mocha is made with delectable chocolate syrup, milk, milk foam, and a shot of espresso which is then topped with whipped cream.

7. Cafe Latte:

Cafe Latte just like cafe mocha is a delightful treat with a twist of energizing coffee. 

Cafe Latte is made from one shot of espresso coffee with three parts steamed milk and can be topped with delicious whipped cream. 

8. Macchiato:

A macchiato is a three-layered surprise in a cozy mug of coffee. Macchiato is made from one shot of espresso, and foam milk, layered with delectable flavors like vanilla and caramel.

9. Flat White:

Simple, delicious, and delightful is all you need to describe flat white coffee as it is just a blend of steamed milk and coffee. 

A flat white is simply half a portion of espresso with equal half portions of milk.

10. Irish Coffee:

Irish Coffee is definitely not meant for children and is paired great during a fun game night in the pub. 

Irish coffee is made from one shot of espresso for the energizing qualities of coffee with a dash of whiskey for an adult twist.

11. Iced Coffee:

Iced Coffee is prepared hot and warm like any regular coffee which is then poured over ice and can be consumed with milk, cream, sugar, or just simply black. 

While the iced coffee can is described as cold coffee with sugar and milk, black iced coffee is called cold brew.

What are the health benefits of consuming coffee?

We all know that coffee is a perfect partner for a lazy morning especially when you find it hard to get out of bed. 

However, coffee is more than just an effective energizer, in fact, it is more than just a cognitive stimulant and encompasses a myriad of health benefits, vitamins, and antioxidants. 

To help you understand the benefits of consuming coffee here is a freshly brewed list of coffee and its health benefits that goes beyond brightening up your day:

Promotes healthy weight:

Are you searching for new weight loss plans but falling victim to gimmicky remedies or diet plans, the treasure lies in your fresh morning brew. 

Research denotes that coffee can help regulate weight by altering fat storing and promoting healthy weight management. 

According to another research, the consumption of coffee was linked to a decrease in body fat in women. 

In fact, according to a study people who consume two cups of coffee a day are able to indulge in rigorous physical activity more than those who have less than 2 cups of coffee per day.

Lowers the risk of type-2 diabetes:

Type-2 diabetes is a chronic health condition that is associated with how the body metabolizes and uses sugars. When the blood sugar levels of an individual are high, they can fall victim to serious health problems. 

Drinking coffee can help regulate these blood sugar levels and lower the risk of such health issues. 

Coffee protects the function of the beta cells present in the pancreas that produces insulin to regulate the blood sugar levels in the body. 

Not only that, but coffee also contains magnesium, a chemical element that helps break down sugar in the body.

Lowers the risk of depression:

Have you experienced a rush of energy and an alleviated spirit after sipping out of your morning cup of joe?

Some Studies indicate that the consumption of coffee is also associated with lowering the risk of developing chronic depression. According to a study people who consume a cup of coffee regularly have 8% less risk of chronic depression.

Alleviates Energy Levels:

Coffee contains a natural stimulant called caffeine that helps stimulate cognitive activities and has the ability to fight fatigue and boost energy levels. 

Caffeine blocks out the receptors of neurotransmitters called adenosine and increases the levels of dopamine in the brain as well as regulates energy levels in the body.

Enhances Microbiome Diversity:

The Microbiome Diversity in the gut is one marker to determine a clear bill of health. 

According to a study, people who consume coffee regularly, often have better microbiome diversity in the gut. 

Coffee contains soluble fibers and probiotic properties that help feed the good bacteria present in the gut.

Reduces the risk of cancer:

Coffee along with antioxidants and vitamins also contains a multitude of compounds that contribute significantly to one’s overall health. 

According to a study, coffee contains two important compounds, namely kahweol and cafestol that help stunt the growth of kidney and prostate cancer cells in the body. 

In another study, coffee is also related to lowering the risk of developing prostate, breast, kidney, colorectal, and endometrial cancers.

Lowers the risk of liver conditions:

Consuming coffee is also linked to lowering the risk of developing certain chronic liver diseases. 

A study that involved about half a million participants, indicated that consuming 3 to 4 cups of coffee a day lowers the risk of developing chronic liver diseases.

Lowers the risk of heart failure:

Coffee due to the diuretic efforts on the fluids in the body is associated with lowering the risk of congestive heart failure. 

According to a study, consuming a daily cup of coffee decreases the risk of heart failure by up to 12%.

Lowers the risk of Alzheimer’s:

Alzheimer’s is a chronic and progressive brain disorder that leads to the deterioration of cognitive skills, loss of memory, and impaired thinking. 

A large study encompassing 29,000 participants indicated that people who regularly consume coffee have a lower risk of developing Alzheimer’s.

 Lowers the risk of Parkinson’s disease:

Parkinson’s disease is a progressive neurological disorder that leads to gross motor impairment, lack of balance, and problems in movement. 

Just like Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s disease does not have any particular cure and often worsens as it progresses. According to a study, daily consumption of coffee lowers the risk of developing Parkinson’s disease.

How much coffee is too much coffee?

If you are a coffee fanatic who depends on stimulants like caffeine to push through sluggish mornings or lazy days, several cups of coffee might be your saving grace. 

According to the FDA, for a healthy adult, about 400 mg of coffee or four to five cups of coffee a day can cause negative health effects. 

This figure is however tentative and can vary based on an individual’s health condition, sensitivities, and how fast coffee can metabolize in their body. 

People on certain medications should avoid consuming coffee to avoid any adverse reactions, while women who are pregnant, trying to conceive, or breastfeeding must limit their caffeine consumption.

Nutritional Value in Coffee:

Coffee contains the following nutritional sources:

  • Caffeine
  • Vitamin B2
  • Magnesium
  • Plant Compounds: polyphenols like chlorogenic acid and quinic acid, kahweol, and cafestol
  • One cup or eight ounces of coffee contains about 95 grams of caffeine.

What are the side effects of consuming coffee?

While consuming coffee on its own in moderate amounts may not have any immediate side effects, consuming too much coffee may lead to certain inconveniences.

Side effects of consuming too much coffee include:

  • Insomnia
  • jitters
  • anxiety
  • upset stomach
  • anxiousness
  • elevated heart pace
  • headaches
  • dysphoria or feeling of displeasure
  • nausea