Daily Brews: Is Coffee Healthy?

 

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I’m a personal trainer.  Which means that I basically have two wake-up times 6 days a week:  5am.  And earlier than 5am.  After clawing my way out of bed and dragging myself to the auto-drip, it is essential to my existence that I stare blankly into a cup of coffee before I get on the train to later coach, energize and slightly terrify my clients with my enthusiasm.  I literally drink coffee so that I have a personality.  But downing the stuff on the reg got me wondering, should I be cutting out caffeine?  Is there actually any advantage to that daily cup of joe?   Turns out, there are many.   THANK.  GAWD.

 

  • Up the Ante(oxidant)  According to a new study performed by researchers at the University of Scranton in Pennsylvania, coffee is the number one source of antioxidants in America.  Before we get too jittery with excitement, we have to take in to account that this is partly due to the fact that Americans aren’t eating enough antioxidant-rich fruits and vegetables.  Wahw, wahw.  Therefore, please keep in mind that coffee should not replace a diet full of healthy antioxidant-rich foods.  Certain fruits and vegetables (also dark chocolate, also red wine) are proven to be richer in antioxidants per serving size, like blueberries or dates for example.  However a daily brew could help to increase the overall amount of antioxidants consumed on a daily basis.  Summary: Coffee gives you cancer-fighting superhero powers.  So that’s kewl.
  • Great for Girls.  Coffee has been known to lower depression risk in women.  I mean, I get it.  It makes me go from “I’m completely hopeless-how-will-I-ever-make-it-through-this-day”, to

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A Harvard study showed that women who drank a few cups of coffee, versus women who did not, had a lower risk of depression.  Dr. Albery Ascherio states that caffeine has a positive effect on the brain because it “modulates the release of mood transmitters” i.e. increases dopamine, that feel-good neurotransmitter found in your brain.  Summary:  Drinking coffee makes your brain go from Daria to the Care Bears.  (Although Daria is pretty cool, too.)

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before caffeine.

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AAAAAAFTERRRRRRRRR!  YAAAAAAS!!!!!!!!!!

 

 

  • Great for Guys.  Harvard’s smart and stuff.  And according to their research, men who consume 6 cups of coffee a day have a 60% decreased chance of  developing prostate cancer.  Don’t want to guzzle half a pot?  No worries.  Researchers say that even drinking just one cup can lower this risk by 30%.  (But a half a pot is so much more fun.)  Summary: Men should drink coffee.
  • Boost Brain Power  Since caffeine is, in all seriousness, a drug, it does have an obvious impact on our brain.  Caffeine increases dopamine levels in the brain, while blocking adenosine absorption and injecting adrenaline into your system.  Decoded: caffeine is addictive and gives you a temporary boost by manipulating your brain and it’s chemical reactors.  While this could be a great stimulant before an intense workout or even a study session to improve alertness and energy, many researchers and doctors recommend drinking no more than 3 cups a day.  Too much caffeine can start to have a negative impact on sleep and long-term memory.  But this same brain interaction has also been a suspect culprit in helping to ward off Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease in some studies.  Although this is not proven, many researchers believe there to be a link between coffee consumption and lower risks of developing these dopamine-deficient diseases.  Summary:  Drugs are bad.  Drugs disguised as coffee are good.  Drink coffee.  Don’t do drugs.  Any questions?

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So, in summary,

DRINKING COFFEE WILL MAKE YOU A HAPPIER, HEALTHIER, SEXIER and IMMORTAL. 

But please keep in mind that if you brew regularly, you probably should only consume 2-3 cups a day along with a healthy diet and fitness routine.  Also be wary of caloric intake: filling your mug with tons of sugar and cream obviously negates some of the health benefits.  If you’re like me and just can’t drink it black, try adding a spoonful of honey, agave nectar, or splenda and a touch of heavy cream or coconut almond milk.

Cheers!

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One response to “Daily Brews: Is Coffee Healthy?

  1. Very interesting read and nice blog.
    I recently launched my “Gio’s Coffee Diary” blog http://gioscoffeediary.wordpress.com/
    Please let me know what you think and feel free to comment and follow.

    It includes reviews of different coffees from around the world, café reviews and tips about coffee tasting, preparation and cupping. Economics and ethics also feature very heavily and there are separate sections for each. Please feel free to let me know what you think, provide feedback or submit your own coffee and/or café reviews. Finally, check out the news stories on the “Blog Updates” tab which I update on an almost daily basis.

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