The Coffee Debate
There has been a lot of controversy over java and many people are confused as to whether it would be helpful or harmful to include in their daily regimen. There have been a number of studies conducted lately regarding coffee’s effect on our system, and believe it or not- coffee is appearing to be the next superfood.
Coffee As A Superfood?
A study performed by Harvard researchers found that drinking coffee (up to six cups!) has the potential to cut diabetes risk in half! Other studies show that people who drink coffee are 80 % less likely to develop Parkinson’s disease, have a 25% reduced risk of colon cancer, 80% reduced risk of colon cancer, and are 50% less likely to develop gallstones. Other beneficial properties of coffee include fewer asthma attacks, headaches, cavities and elevated mood.
Beneficial Boosts of Coffee
These beneficial boosts to our health are attributed to the compounds discovered in coffee. It appears that coffee contains the antioxidants, chlorogenic acid and tocopherols. Trigonelline is another compound in coffee that gives it its bitter taste and contains antibacterial properties. The caffeine in coffee can also enhance our athletic ability by causing our muscles to make stronger contractions, which in turn helps us to burn fat more efficiently. The downside however is that drinking coffee may cause you to ignore fatigue and your body’s natural cry for relaxation. If we choose to ignore these signs and continue to drink down the “jo” –day in and day out– we may end up with what’s known as chronic fatigue syndrome due to exhausted adrenal glands.
Possible Coffee Con’s
If you suffer from anxiety, drinking coffee can exacerbate symptoms and may cause more frequent panic attacks. This reaction is very individual so if you find that coffee causes nervousness, rapid heartbeat or trembling, you may want to start decreasing your intake to prevent such reactions.
Coffee also takes between 3-6 hours to get out of our system depending on your genetic predisposition to metabolize caffeine. If you have problems getting enough sleep, you may want to limit your coffee to a morning cup if at all. In addition, unfiltered coffee may also increase cholesterol levels in some people. Other folks that should limit or avoid caffeine include certain heart patients, pregnant or nursing women, and people at risk for osteoporosis since caffeine intake has been shown to attribute to calcium loss in the urine.
There are pros and cons to everything, so depending on your current state of health and what issues you are dealing with, coffee may or may not be a superfood you need to include in your daily routine.
How to start LIVING FRESH when it comes to drinking coffee:
- Purchase organic coffee. One of the most heavily pesticide-sprayed crops is coffee, so keep your coffee (and your body!) clean by opting for organic.
- Dress up your coffee wisely. If you don’t drink coffee black-Avoid using unhealthy additions such as sugar (yes, even the brown kind), liquid coffee creamers and powdered creamers. Instead use healthier choices such as stevia, raw milk or unsweetened almond or coconut milk or even coconut creamer. Yum!
- Limit your intake. If you find coffee keeps you up at night if you have a cup too late, then limit your Jo-drinking to 1-2 cups only before the 2pm mark.
- Avoid at all costs if you suffer from adrenal/ chronic fatigue or anxiety. As enticing as it seems, especially when your tired all the time, caffeine will only run your body down more, so make sure you take steps to support your adrenal glands with the right nutritional plan and adaptogenic herbs.