There is a lot to be said about coffee. We’ve been told it was bad for us. We’ve been told it was good for us. Some say to drink it but in moderation, others say to eliminate it completely. As with most things regarding our health, the truth is found in balance and knowing our individual chemistry.
Let’s take a look at all the scientifically proven benefits of drinking coffee.
An ordinary 8-ounce cup of coffee provides us with vitamins B1, B2, B3, B5, folate, manganese, potassium, magnesium and phosphorus! Most amounts are around 1-3% of our RDA, other than 11% of B2 and 6% of B5, but that’s only in one cup. And truthfully, how many coffee drinkers stop at one?
Coffee is also very high in antioxidants. So much so that the average American coffee drinker gets more from their daily joe than their daily fruits and vegetables.
Coffee also has disease fighting benefits.
If your morning cup isn’t loaded with dairy, sugar and artificial flavors, coffee itself has been shown to lower your risk of developing type 2 diabetes by up to 23-67%.
Most likely due to its high levels of antioxidants, coffee also protects the liver from Cirrhosis and cancer. Tests show that people who drank four or more cups a day reduced their risk for Cirrhosis by up to 84%. That’s not a reason to up your intake though. Keep reading to understand the need for moderation.
A major player in coffee analysis is the caffeine. This is where we need to know the good and the bad.
Coffee is a natural source of caffeine, so there is the first benefit. Studies have shown that this can energize your metabolism helping the body burn off more weight, so paired with an exercise regime, your fitness routine gets a major boost. The same stimulation affects your brain as well. There is a reason coffee has been the morning drink of choice for generations.
Coffee actually blocks Adenosine, a hormone in the brain which promotes sleep, suppresses arousal and is a central nervous system depressant. This is needed for the body to rest, but that’s not what we want when starting our day! Coffee enhances brain activity and stimulates our systems to release norepinephrine and dopamine giving us energy and mental clarity. This is what gives you that burst of morning brain power, improving your mood and cognitive ability.
This boost and release of dopamine is also why coffee has been noted as an antidepressant. Coffee’s stimulus on the brain has been shown to protect against Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s and age related neurodegenerative diseases.
These are all great reasons to have your morning cup or two or four, but there are some downsides to this warm, roasted brew.
Avid coffee drinkers are very familiar with the addictive side to the morning stimulant. Caffeine can become an energizer your body doesn’t like to live without causing severe migraines, adrenal fatigue, exhaustion, cranky attitudes and an inability to focus. The more we drink, the more we build up our resistance. So it is a good idea to slowly cut back, alternate your daily amount from one cup to your maximum and skip a day here and there when you can. Maybe on the weekend.
Our body can also have a say in our coffee tolerance. We actually process caffeine quite differently due to a common genetic mutation. If caffeine makes you twitchy, anxious, paranoid or alters the rhythm of your heart beat, then you should probably avoid it. If that is not the case for you, then pay attention to changes after drinking a certain number of cups. It’s possible to have too much of a good thing, so if coffee is disrupting your sleep or giving you the sensations of a panic attack, you really need to cut back.
Coffee’s benefits far outweigh the negatives, especially if your body tolerates caffeine well. It does so many things for your body that it is sure to make the list of superfoods, but for now take a look at how coffee can be on your fitness list.
Whether you drink one cup or ten, we can all agree that at times a hot brew is the last thing we want. There are other ways to fill that coffee craving without grinding more beans. Terra Origin’s coffee flavored Healthy Greens Superfoods gives you all the benefits of another cup and so much more. It takes the superfood qualities of coffee bean powder and mixes it with other known health monsters like probiotics, enzymes, chlorella, spinach, kelp, turmeric, green tea and so much more. This is one mug you shouldn’t pass up!