Coffee and Your Health

Drinking coffee has a long history of being seen as bad for your health.  However, recent research now suggests that coffee may not be so bad for us after all.

So which is it, good or bad? For most of us, the answer is the health benefits of drinking coffee will likely outweigh the risks. In particular, recent studies have generally found no connection whatsoever, between coffee and any increased risk of cancer or heart disease.

This is a u-turn from previous studies, as it now appears that these earlier studies didn’t always take into account that the known high-risk factors, such as smoking and a lack of exercise were more common amongst heavy coffee drinkers, at that time. It might come as a surprise therefore, to find that there seems to be a range of health benefits that comes from drinking coffee also.

Newer studies have shown that coffee may have benefits such as protecting us against Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimers and some cancers. Coffee also has a high content of antioxidants, which are know to protect us from the damage of free radicals.

Studies have also shown that coffee is a very good pre-workout drink because drinking a cup of coffee before exercise provides more than just an added energy boost.  Several studies have demonstrated a link between caffeine intake before exercise and increased athletic performance.  Perhaps the greatest benefit of having coffee before a workout is its fat burning properties.  Coffee when consumed before exercise can cause fat cells to be used as an energy source.

The high amounts of caffeine in black coffee will also increase our metabolism, which makes us burn more calories throughout the day. Having coffee before exercise enhances that effect. Caffeine and other compounds found in coffee act as an appetite suppressant, making us consume less overall.

However, as we have come to expect, it’s not all-good news as the research also suggests that drinking coffee can come with some health risks too. High consumption of unfiltered coffee is associated with mild elevations in cholesterol levels and caffeine intake of four to seven cups of coffee a day, can cause problems such as restlessness, anxiety, irritability and sleeplessness.

Also, we must bear in mind that coffee accompaniments such as cream and sugar add fat and calories to our diet. The key point to remember is the old adage of everything in moderation.


12 Aug, 2013

6 thoughts on “Coffee and Your Health

  1. Very interesting. My husband drinks only coffee during the day, but most of it is decaf. I have one cup a day in the morning and it’s caffeinated, but I can drink a small cup and go to sleep.

    I’ve heard that people with ADD that drink coffee will calm down. The coffee has the reverse affect on the body. I have an acquintance that when she drinks coffee it calms her. She is ADHD.

    I agree with you to that it needs to be in moderation. To much of a good thing can be bad.

    1. Thanks Lisa. I’ve never actually got into the habit of drinking coffee, probably because I’m not keen on the aftertaste.

      As we both agree Lisa, the key is moderation as to how much coffee we drink.

  2. I tend to only drink about two cups of coffee a day.

    I had no idea that it can help boost your metabolism and rev up the engine as a pre-workout routine. Very informative post!

    1. Thanks Maria. Yes you’ll be pleased to know coffee has its benefits too, but I would still drink coffee in moderation. I believe it can also raise blood pressure.

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