Coffee has a pretty controversial reputation. It is one of those things that you are either for or against and with so many articles, posts and studies all pointing in two very different directions, it can be hard to figure out what the truth really is.
So we wanted to break it down for you.
The nutrient profile of coffee is actually extremely high (as long as you are drinking organic coffee), it has a high antioxidant count and there are a ton of crucial nutrients in coffee - a typical 2450ml cup contains:
- Vitamin B2 (riboflavin): 11% of the DV
- Vitamin B5 (pantothenic acid): 6% of the DV
- Vitamin B1 (thiamine): 2% of the DV
- Vitamin B3 (niacin): 2% of the DV
- Folate: 1% of the DV
- Manganese: 3% of the DV
- Potassium: 3% of the DV
- Magnesium: 2% of the DV
- Phosphorus: 1% of the DV
Studies have shown that coffee drinkers have up to a 65% lower risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease, 32–60% lower risk of Parkinson’s disease, and a 23–67% reduced risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
Coffee drinkers also have a 84% lower risk of developing cirrhosis of the liver and up to a 40% lower risk of liver cancer.
A study came out from Harvard in 2011 that stated that people who drank the most coffee had a 20% lower risk of becoming depressed.
Caffeine is a psychoactive substance, which by definition is a stimulant of the nervous system. Caffeine is a known stimulant, in the brain it blocks the function of an inhibitory neurotransmitter called adenosine which increases activity in your brain and releases other neurotransmitters like norepinephrine and dopamine to reduce tiredness and makes you feel more alert!
Caffeine has the ability to provide a short-term boost in brain function, which helps to improve mood, reaction time, vigilance and general cognitive function.
Caffeine is the most commonly consumed psychoactive substance in the world, and many people feel like they "need" caffeine to function, this is when it becomes a problem. People can develop a dependence on coffee and other caffeinated beverages quite quickly. This is due to the chemical changes that sustained consumption produces in the brain. If someone drinks caffeine on a daily basis, they will develop a tolerance and will eventually need to consume a higher amount to have the same effect.
When regular caffeine consumers abstain from caffeine they can experience withdrawal symptoms such as headaches, exhaustion, brain fog and irritability - these tend to last only a few days and are eased by drinking lots of water.
Just like anything in life, moderation with coffee and caffeine in general is key.
Because caffeine does stimulate the brain, consuming too much can lead to jitteriness, anxiety, heart palpitations and even exacerbated panic attacks. If you are someone who tends to feel the affects of caffeine quite heavily or you experience anxiety or panic attacks regularly you may want to give decaf a try!
DECAF VS CAFFEINATED
A regular 8oz cup of coffee has anywhere from 70-140mg of caffeine.
An 8oz cup of decaf coffee has 7mg caffeine.
So you can see that there really is a big difference between the two!
Pro tip: Decaffeinated coffee is usually made by rinsing coffee beans with chemicals, that's why it's very important to purchase Swiss water process decaf coffee, which is done using water and zero chemicals.
THE IMPORTANCE OF ORGANIC COFFEE
Coffee is one of the most heavily chemically treated crops in the world so it’s important that if you do enjoy a cup of coffee that you’re choosing organic fair trade coffee.
Organic coffee means it is pure, pesticide and herbicide free, and that the farms that grow the coffee have renewable farming practices in place and combat climate change by emitting less carbon than chemical farms!
Organic coffee is actually higher in antioxidants!
Fun Fact: we use organic cold brew coffee in our coconut koala cafe latte freezie - and it is such a small amount of coffee that the caffeine content is extremely low so you can feel comfortable having one anytime of day!
Happy caffeinating - @tubify