What’s the benefit of drinking coffee? A legitimate question. Regardless of whether you like coffee or not, the coffee industry is booming everywhere. A recent study by The National Coffee Association has shown that half the United States population (over 18 years of age) drinks coffee daily. That’s an easy 150 million daily consumption of an average of 3.2 drinks per day!
The United States alone imports what is equivalent to $4 billion worth of coffee every year, with daily consumption of 400 million cups per day, which makes the US the largest consumer in the world.
Often time we heard the debate between friends and family, what are the health benefits of coffee? Recent studies are encouraging, and we will cover some of them today.
Plausible Health Benefits of Coffee
For non-smokers, the benefits are many, as several studies have shown. One of the most eye-opening is the study published in Circulation, which found that coffee drinking is related to an 8% to 15% reduction in the risk of death.
Thanks to its high level of antioxidants and beneficial nutrients, below I have listed the benefits.
- It improves focus and energy.
- Improves physical performance due to increased adrenaline levels.
- Boosts metabolic rate (Fat Burning).
- Contains Nutrients.
- Reduced risk of type 2 diabetes
- Possible prevention of Parkison’s disease.
- Prevents Liver Cancer.
- Mood enhancer, a natural anti-depressant.
- Suitable for the heart and can decrease stroke risk.
- Increased lifespan.
- Abundant in antioxidants.
Whether the benefits are linked to caffeinated or decaffeinated coffee, studies are not conclusive, but what is conclusive after decade long studies on its various nutrients, is the fact that coffee can help and is beneficial without a doubt.
Plausible Health Risks of Coffee
Many health problems are linked to coffee consumption, primarily if more than 4 cups daily use. Based on many studies, issues include:
- Increased blood pressure: a recent survey by the Mayo Clinic Sheldon G. Sheps, M.D. concluded that caffeine could cause sudden, “dramatic” blood pressure rise and overall high blood pressure. To test yourself if you a prone to high blood pressure due to caffeine consumption, check your blood pressure before coffee intake and recheck after 30 to 120 minutes. If you see an increase in blood pressure, you should try to gradually withdraw from drinking coffee to avoid possible headaches and migraines.
- Cardiovascular disease: according to www.heart.org, the studies show conflicting results due to dietary factors and the way studies were performed.
- Early death in case of more than 4 cups consumed per day: a study published by the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition conducted with 347,000 individuals and more than 8,000 instances concluded that heavy coffee consumption was associated with a modest increase in cardiovascular disease risk.
- Caffeine can cause Insomnia: a study conducted on 18 young male adults concluded that caffeine could mimic symptoms of insomnia.
- Caffeine can cause indigestion: in a study published by the International Journal of Epidemiology, overweight male and female consumers of coffee showed a strong relation between adiposity and indigestion. Symptoms disappeared when adiposity was controlled.
- Caffeine can cause headaches and lead to migraines: In a study published by the International Journal of Epidemiology of 4558, individuals showed symptoms of increased headaches and migraines when coffee is excessively consumed.
- Risk of miscarriage: in a study published by the National Institute of Health, researchers compared many lifestyle factors including but not limited to the use of cigarettes and caffeinated beverages among 344 couples looking for pregnancy. Results showed 98 failed pregnancies out of 344, which is 28% of the total 344.
- Worse Menopause syndrome: in a recent study by The Journal of The North American Menopause Society indicates that menopausal women who consume caffeine had a higher risk of vasomotor symptoms.
The World Health Organization Decision on Coffee
The World Health Organization officially dropped coffee as a possible carcinogen due to none conclusive evidence of a carcinogenic effect of drinking coffee.
Continue Drinking Coffee or Not?
- One is not required to drink coffee, so if you are not a coffee person, that’s OK.
- If you do drink coffee, the health benefits and risks mentioned in this article are not 100% conclusive. Many unforeseen or unknown factors may have interfered with the research’s results, not to say that some associated risks had minimal or small effects.
- Considering that most of the studies concluded that most of the health risks are associated with heavy consumption of more than 4 cups per day, moderation is KEY. Limiting your daily use to 1,2 or 3 cups per day looks to be OK with most of the well-respected researchers mentioned in this post. Moreover, Esophageal cancer was related only to drinking scalding coffee (over 149 degrees Fahrenheit or 65 degrees Celsius).
Can You Resist The Smell of Coffee?
I find the decision of the World Health Organization in favor of coffee to be quite reassuring. I am nowhere near in dropping my daily 2 cups of delightful coffee. Nothing compares waking up to the smell of fresh, hot (moderately) cup of black coffee.
As a substance, it traveled the globe. Dominates our mornings, afternoons, and our lovely nights out in small coffee shops and the most exquisite fancy restaurants out there!
I think coffee has been a significant component of our global society, triggering and witnessing many of our intimate moments. Who doesn’t relate to having a warm conversation with loved ones over a cup of coffee? How many business agreements were reached over a cup of delicious coffee?
It only became part of our daily routines and rituals. Thank you, COFFEE!