There are so many varying ideas about the good and bad of coffee. Is coffee good or evil? Moderation can help this equasion no matter what the answer, but coffee, whether caffeinated or decaffeinated is a favorite beverage that keeps us going during the week and acts as a relaxing treat on the weekends.
Besides the delicious taste, what has coffee got going for it? Caffeine wakes you up in the morning. That hot coffee can taste fantastic when it’s cold and dreary outside, and can cool you when you have it in it’s iced coffee form. But coffee has its health benefits as well.
Coffee contains antioxidants and caffeine which are both known to have health and anti aging properties. Anti-aging? More reason to down that second cup of coffee. Coffee has antioxidants that fight free radicals, repairing damaged cells. Did you know the mineral content of coffee, which includes magnesium and chromium, among other minerals, helps people to metabolize insulin? Because of this good mineral benefit coffee is known to help with type 2 diabetes and reduce diabetes risk by 60%.
The caffeine in coffee can help headaches and asthma. Caffeine dialates blood vessels when you have a headache reducing the pain. Asthma sufferers can open their airways with a caffeined cup of coffee. Reports state women who drink coffee can reduce the risk of heart disease by 25%. Coffee drinkers in general can reduce their risk of colon cancer by 25% as well. Coffee reduces demntia? Apparently so, and by 65% no less. Coffee drinkers have a huge advantage with cirrhosis and Parkinson’s disease, both have 80% risk reduction for coffee drinkers.
If you drink caffeinated coffee the caffeine does something to you, oh yeah, that wake up thing in the morning. Add the amount of caffeine in your multiple cups of coffee by the addition of sugar and creamers and coffee can be a little unhealthy for you after all. Ordering a specialty coffee with added goodies can definitely add up in calories daily.
Past medical studies showed an increased risk of cancer or heart disease in heavy coffee drinkers but did not take into account the high-risk activities of smoking and physical inactivity associated with the study.
Health practitioners say 2-4 cups is a healthy amount of coffee per day. You know what happens when you drink a lot of coffee all day long when jittery feelings from the effects of the caffeine hit you. Caffeine in larger doses can cause problems in sensitive individuals increasing blood pressure and causing tachycardia and insomnia. High consumption of unfiltered coffee is known to cause mild elevations in cholesterol levels. Caffeinated drinks are also known to have a diuretic effect which can dehydrate you.
According to the evidence coffee’s health benefits seem to outweigh the risks. There is decaf for those concerned about their caffeine intake, generally better tasting when ground in bean form you don’t lose as much flavor. So don’t feel too guilty about your coffee intake, as always moderation is the key.