Coffee & Its Nutritional Effects

Coffee

Coffee has been consumed since the 15th century – first roasted and brewed in the country of Arabia.  What was once a typical beverage has now sparked thousands of debates and arguments surrounding its safety, general nutrition, and whether or not we should be consuming it. 

Coffee is now listed as a drug or addictive substance on various sign-in sheets found in doctors, physical therapy, and other administrative offices.  As we venture down the path of coffee, we will find out the pro’s, con’s, and everything in between.

Coffee has developed into a beast of its own – going from a classic black cup to an uncountable amount of variations.  We now have Latte’s, Mocha Latte, the Cappuccino, Espresso’s, Red Eyes – just to name a few.

Although coffee has grown into quite the controversial topic, there is no doubt that there are nutritional benefits to consuming a healthy brewed cup.  One of the first benefits found in the consumption of coffee includes:

1. Diabetes

Coffee has been scientifically tested in regards to its properties that help protect against type-2 diabetes.

There was a research study done with over 40,000 people who had increased their consumption of coffee by at least one cup a day, over the span of 4 years!  These people had an 11% lower risk of diabetes (type-2) than those who limited their coffee intake.  

Coffee affects each person differently and although may help reduce the risk of type-2 diabetes, will not help resolve the issue if that person is already compromised.

offee consumption, like reducing the risk for type-2 diabetes, also has the potential to lower the risk of liver related diseases, including cancer.  

There was a research study done where coffee consumption had the ability to lower the risk of liver cancer by almost 40%, including a tiny fact that those who consume 3 cups a day have almost a 50% lower risk.  In 2019, another review came to the same realization on this fact.

It doesn’t stop there, a 2017 study shows that consuming any type of coffee had the effects similar to the studies done above.  However, these studies showed that not only was the possibility of liver cancer reduced, but also nonalcoholic fatty liver disease, and cirrhosis.

Cirrhosis is known as scarring of the liver.

2. Parkinson’s

Many studies have concluded that caffeine, which is found in coffee among other beverages, may help reduce the risk of Parkinson’s disease.

Men who consumed over 4 cups of coffee per day have a much lesser risk of Parkinson’s than those who do not.

Another study shows that, even though coffee can help reduce the risk of Parkinson’s, coffee can even help reduce the effects of those who have been diagnosed and suffer from the effects of Parkinson’s.

Parkinson’s is known as shaking stiffness, and difficulty walking, primarily found in the elderly.

3. Heart Health

As we go further into our studies, we have another related to Heart Health.  One study showed that drinking coffee (around 2, 8 oz cups / day), may prevent heart failure.

Those who drink moderate amounts of coffee daily, have a significant lower risk of heart failure than those who do not.

Risks of Coffee:

We spoke briefly about the benefits of coffee: heart disease, liver diseases & cancers, Parkinson’s, etc. However, with any good things, there’s usually a negative side too – or at least a side we shouldn’t simply ignore.

The Risks of Coffee are far and few and are select to certain groups of people. Read more below to find out whether or not you should consume coffee.

1. Bone Fractures in Women

There have been a few studies that concluded women who drink a lot of coffee may have the potential for bone fractures.

On the contrary, Men who drank more coffee had a lower risk for bone fractures.

2. Pregnancy & Caffeine

Some researchers have pointed out that consuming coffee while pregnant may not be a great idea. 

There is even evidence to suggest that high coffee consumption and pregnancy can lead to things such as: low birth weight, preterm birth, and possibly pregnancy loss.

3. Anxiety & Mental Health Issues

Consuming high amounts of coffee can possibly increase the risk of anxiety, specifically those with previous panic or social disorders.  Another study concluded that high amounts of caffeine intake in adolescence can permanently change the brain, resulting in anxiety related issues in adulthood.

Nutritional Facts & Coffee

Coffee is relatively low in calories and isn’t something that should be avoided if one is looking to lose weight or keep their calories at a minimum.  Coffee generally contains about 2 calories per cup of black coffee.  Where many people find their biggest concern actually lies in the sweeteners and sugars that are added to coffee.  As long as coffee is kept in its natural state, it is a very low caloric beverage.

Coffee has been known to contain antioxidants, such as polyphenols.  Polyphenols include agents that can improve and help treat digestive issues, weight management, neurodegenerative diseases, diabetes, and even cardiovascular diseases.  As we spoke about earlier, coffee has been linked to fewer diabetes and liver diseases amongst its consumers.

Generally speaking, coffee is safe for consumption and is actually recommended.  

Sources:

https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s00125-014-3235-7
https://www.cghjournal.org/article/S1542-3565(13)00609-5/pdf
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5696634/
https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/30977056/

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