Coffee – many less known benefits
Coffee is rich in antioxidants and other stimulating nutrients (e.g. caffeine), which help prevent fatigue and diseases such as cancer or heart problems. It has also been found to help fight depression, improve good mood.
Coffee is undoubtedly the drink without which many of us would not conceive to start our morning. Beyond the unique taste and the miraculous effect it has on us, it is distinguished by a lot of health benefits when consumed in the amount recommended by specialists.
Originally from Ethiopia and the Arabian Peninsula, coffee is today one of the favorite drinks of the Western world and its consumption has spread in Europe and America. Its main compound, caffeine, is a psychoactive drug with important effects on our nervous system and the subject of much research.
Even if some say that coffee is harmful, as scientific studies progress, we can see that its benefits are greater and more than its disadvantages. Coffee is not only a strong stimulant (advantage or disadvantage, depending on the situation), but also has a vasodilating effect and seems to have a preventive effect in the appearance of diseases such as diabetes or some types of cancer.
What are the less known benefits of coffee?
It banishes the feeling of fatigue and provides energy
Due to the content of caffeine, which acts on the brain by blocking adenosine, a neurotransmitter that causes the growth of other substances such as dopamine or norepinephrine, thus accelerating the activity of the brain.
Rich source of natural antioxidants
Coffee ranks 6th in the top 50 antioxidant foods, according to The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. It contains polyphenols, bioactive compounds that prevent functional and structural changes in various diseases.
Because drinking coffee improves various functions of the brain: memory, mood, alertness, energy levels, reaction time and general cognitive function . However, if consumed in excess, it can cause insomnia and sleep disorders, so it is recommended to consume in moderation.
Decreases the possibility of developing neurological disorders
Thanks to caffeine, which helps control the body's circulation in people suffering from or may suffer from Alzheimer's and Parkinson's, even if there is currently no 100% effective treatment.
Contributes to fat burning
Caffeine is one of the few natural substances that help burn fat. Therefore, many weight loss supplements have caffeine as a basic ingredient and during their administration it is recommended to give up coffee. Unfortunately, in large coffee drinkers this effect is less visible.
Protects the liver from cirrhosis and PSC
PSC (primary sclerosis cholangitis), closely related to hepatitis. It is proven that people who consume coffee daily have a lower risk of primary sclerosis cholangitis (CEP), a rare autoimmune disease of the bile ducts in the liver. Coffee also reduces the incidence of cirrhosis (especially alcohol) by 22%, research published in the journal Hepatology.
Because caffeine increases gastric secretion, pancreas and saliva, thus facilitating digestion.
Improves physical performance
That is why it is recommended for performance athletes, but also for people who perform intense physical activities every day. Explanation? Caffeine increases the level of adrenaline, a hormone that prepares our body for intense physical effort.
Reduces the risk of stroke
This was proven by a Japanese study that monitored coffee consumption in 83,269 adults aged between 45 and 74 years. He found that people who drank coffee daily had a 20% lower risk of stroke compared to those who did not drink coffee often.
This is demonstrated by a recent study published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry. The conclusion? Drinking coffee can protect against affected eyesight and even blindness.
Natural treatment against drepression
(Especially at women), according to a study by Harvard University, according to which the risk of depression decreases when we increase coffee consumption, at least at women. Women who drank four or more cups of coffee a day were 20% less likely to develop depression. Again, caffeine is responsible for this reduction, as women who drank caffeine-free coffee showed no improvement. In addition, moderate coffee consumption can significantly reduce the suicide rate, as it has been proven that those who drink coffee daily commit suicide by up to 50% less than people who do not consume this drink at all.
Ally for healthy arteries
As consuming three to five cups of coffee a day reduces the risk of clogged arteries and heart attacks.
Reduces the risk of developing cardiovascular disease
Although it is known that it raises blood pressure, it seems to actually prevent heart attacks, dispelling the myth that coffee is forbidden to people with cardiovascular disease. Consumption of coffee in moderate quantities is thus associated with a reduced risk of heart failure, benefits that would disappear only if you consume more than four or five coffees a day.
Decreases the risk of type 2 Diabetes
The most common type of diabetes, as it increases the plasma levels of sex hormone binding globulin (SHBG), which controls the biological activity of the body's sex hormones (testosterone and estrogen) and plays a key role in the development of type 2 diabetes, maintaining a healthy diet and exercising significantly contribute to protection against this type of diabetes.
Reduces the risk of cancer:
- colon cancer - according to a study conducted by the American Nutrition Society on half a million people;
- breast cancer - a Swedish study showed that women who drank about five cups of coffee a day did not develop this type of cancer;
- liver cancer - coffee consumption also reduces the risk of liver cancer by 40%. This result improved to over 50% if consumption was extended to three cups of coffee per day;
- prostate cancer - according to a study published in the journal Cancer Causes and Control, men who drank four or more cups of coffee a day had a 59% lower risk of recurrence of prostate cancer than those whose coffee consumption it was only one cup a week;
- endometrial cancer - coffee seems to have miraculous effects on the most common cancer of the female reproductive organs, which affects about 1 in 37 women in a lifetime. Drinking three or four cups of coffee a day can reduce the risk of endometrial cancer by almost 20%.
Protects from headaches or tinnitus
Although the most common cause of tinnitus is noise exposure, according to a study published in The American Journal of Medicine, it is less common in women who drink more coffee because of the caffeine it contains.
Natural treatment against migraines
Because caffeine relieves severe headaches and increases the effect of sedatives
What is the recommended coffee consumption?
No matter how many health benefits it has, coffee can be harmful in some situations. For healthy adults, the recommended amount of caffeine is 400 mg per day, of course, it also depends on the type of coffee, because its content varies between them. For example, an espresso coffee may contain about 77 mg of caffeine and a normal coffee 163 mg.
Contraindications to coffee consumption:
Pregnant women or those who intend to become pregnant
It is recommended to limit the intake of coffee to 200-300 mg per day. In pregnant women, coffee may increase the risk of miscarriage or delayed fetal growth, especially when consuming more than 600 mg per day because caffeine is harder to eliminate from the body.
Breastfeeding women, the recommendation being a maximum of 200 mg of coffee per day
Because it is proved that caffeine passes into breast milk. Consumption is good to do after breastfeeding the baby, this way the body will have more time to eliminate this substance before the next feeding.
People with cardiovascular problems or high blood pressure
It should limit coffee consumption, as the recommended amount for these situations is not safe and can affect your health.
Because coffee can cause and accelerate anxiety symptoms
Because it is proved that coffee can cause and accelerate anxiety symptoms.
People who are sensitive to caffeine, smokers or who have a high level of anxiety or stress
Because it is proved that it can increase blood pressure.
How can we consume coffee?
The most recommended is to drink it black, without sugar, but if we can't consume it like that, it is recommended to at least opt for honey coffee. We can also enjoy it in different combinations, with miraculous effects:
- Cinnamon coffee, a natural anti-inflammatory for relieving arthritis;
- Coffee with black pepper and turmeric, an ideal combination to get the most anti-inflammatory benefits;
- Coffee with salt, the remedy known since ancient times for hangovers and quick awakening after a party or if you do not like the bitter taste of coffee, as salt has this effect, eliminating it brilliantly.
Kopi Luwak, the most exotic and expensive coffee in the world
If you are wondering which is the most famous coffee in the world precisely because it is the most expensive, but also the most exotic due to its origin and production process, we inform you that it comes from Indonesia and the way it is obtained is not to the liking of many.
Kopi means coffee and luwak is the name of the Indonesian civet, a small cat-like mammal that lives in different parts of the world (on the islands of Sumatra, Java, Sulawesi, Bali etc.).
How to get Kopi Luwak coffee?
It is a coffee obtained from coffee fruits that are in an optimal state of ripeness, after being digested by civets. The coffee plant produces fleshy fruits, red or purple and rarely yellow. They contain two cores (a kind of semi-rigid transparent shells, resembling parchment), each with a coffee bean. When removed, the green coffee beans are obtained, ready to be roasted and packaged.
Why Kopi Luwak coffee is so popular?
Civets feed almost exclusively with coffee, having the ability to select the best beans, taking into account their optimal ripening time.
After eating the fruit, they go through the digestive system in which there are some small changes: the berries are not digested, but it seems that they are chemically modified by enzymes in the stomach of civet, giving them a specific flavor and eliminating the slightly bitter taste. The beans resulting from this process are harvested by local farmers, who wash and fry them easily, without much influencing the specific taste.
Its small annual production, together with the private production process, make it very expensive, being found only in specialized stores.
How good is it to drink Kopi Luwak coffee?
To appreciate its unique aroma, it is recommended to enjoy it without milk or sugar. The ideal way to prepare it is exactly the same as in high-quality cafes, namely, infusion with 8-9 grams of coffee / cup.
Now that we know how healthy it is if it is consumed in moderation, we might enjoy our morning coffee even more, but also the one that gives us the energy we need whenever we need it. So, let’s consume it to our heart's content and enjoy its miraculous effects!
- Ally against fatigue
- Provides energy
- Digestive (promotes digestion)
- Rich source of natural antioxidants
- Supports memory
- Decreases the possibility of developing neurological disorders
- Contributes to fat burning
- Protects the liver from cirrhosis and PSC
- Improves physical performance
- Reduces the risk of stroke
- Protects eyesight
- Natural treatment against depression.
- Ally for healthy arteries
- Reduces the risk of developing cardiovascular disease
- Decreases the risk of Type 2 Diabetes
- Reduces the risk of cancer (liver, colon, breast, endometrial, prostate)
- Protects from headaches or tinnitus
- Natural treatment against migraines.
- Risk of miscarriage or delayed fetal growth
- Increases blood pressure
- Causes and accelerates anxiety symptoms
- Sleeping disorders.
- Women who are pregnant or planning to become pregnant
- Breastfeeding women
- People with cardiovascular problems or high blood pressure
- Vulnerable patients with pre-existing anxiety disorders
- Caffeine sensitive people
- People with a high level of anxiety or stress.