Many of us can’t imagine starting the day without our mug of morning coffee. The aroma of piping hot, freshly brewed coffee is enough to snap us out of our early morning blues. The general perception is that the caffeine content in coffee can cause negative side effects. Researchers, after numerous studies, have concluded that as long as coffee is consumed in moderation there is no need to worry.
For most people below the age of 55, this translates into less than 4 cups of coffee per day (8 ounces per cup). This quantity is not recommended for children. Children already consume so many products that are loaded with caffeine, soft drinks being a prime example. Experts say that the longer you can keep them away from another source of caffeine, the better it will be for them. If they really want to try coffee, make sure that you regulate the amount they consume.
Are you ready to find out why coffee is such a great pick-me-up? Let’s get started!
A Harvard study in 2002 concluded that people who drank up to four cups of coffee per day had a 25% less chance of developing gallstones. Gallstones are small, hard compounds that form within the gall bladder. They can cause severe pain and blockage.
Decreases Risk of Diabetes
Another study concluded that regular coffee drinkers who consume up to 4 cups of coffee have an astonishing 50% less chance of developing Type 2 Diabetes. Type 2 diabetes is a medical condition in which the body is unable to utilize the glucose in the blood stream. Glucose is essential for several bodily functions such as the generation of energy. Insulin is a hormone that is naturally produced by the body. It is responsible for helping the body utilize the sugar (glucose) present in the blood stream after you have your meal. In Type 2 diabetes, the body’s cells do not respond to insulin and this makes it very difficult for your body to utilize glucose.
Research suggests that people who consume between two to four cups of coffee have improved reaction times and better short-term memory. Another research concluded that women aged 65 years and older, who consumed between 3 to 4 cups of coffee, experienced decreased memory decline.
One of the best features of coffee is its ability to boost metabolism and contribute to weight loss. Your body’s metabolism refers to its ability to burn fat. This benefit, however, is mostly limited to individuals who are physically fit and not overweight. If you are overweight or obese, coffee’s effect on your metabolic rate will not significant.
Reduced Risk of Cancer
Research has uncovered a direct correlation between decreased risk of prostate, liver, and breast cancer and increased coffee consumption. A study on breast cancer revealed that drinking five cups of coffee could decrease the incidence of the cancer by 20% for some women. Further research concluded that drinking three cups of coffee could reduce the risk of cancer development.
Works as an Antioxidant
A Harvard research paper suggested that coffee contains several anti-oxidants compounds comparable to those found in fruits and vegetables. Anti-oxidants are vital compounds that help to protect your body against numerous diseases and infections.
Reduced Risk of Parkinson’s disease
According to the Journal of American Medical Association, consuming up to 3 cups of coffee decreased the chances of developing Parkinson’s disease by 25%. Parkinson’s disease is a medical condition that affects the nervous system. It causes frequent trembling, increasingly rigid muscle mobility, and slow movements. It usually affects middle-aged and elderly individuals.
Reduces Risk of Depression
According to a study published in the “Archives of Internal Medicine”, women who consumed 2-3 cups of coffee a day were 15% less likely to develop depression whereas those who consumed 4 cups of coffee or more were 20% more likely to suffer from depression. This study confirms what we discussed before about moderation being critical where coffee consumption is concerned.
Decreased Gout Incidence
According to experts, people who consume coffee in moderate quantities had a decreased risk of developing gout. Gout is caused by a build-up of uric acid in the body. The food you eat contains various compounds. One such class of chemical compounds is called purines, and when your body breaks purines down it releases uric acid. The symptoms of gout include severe joint pain, redness, inflammation, itchy skin, peeling skin, fever, and poor flexibility. Coffee should not be your main solution for gout prevention. Doctors recommend following a well-balanced diet plan that contains controlled portions of purine-rich foods such as seafood and meat products.
For Improved Performance
Why is coffee popular all over the world? Simply because it enhances performance! Coffee not only helps athletes perform better if it is consumed an hour before training, it also results in mental alertness which helps individuals focus on their work and chores.
Be Smart With Your Coffee Intake
As mentioned earlier, moderation is of paramount importance. Studies may say that you can safely have up to 4 cups per day, but keep in mind that this quantity may not be healthy for your body. If you notice any caffeine related side effects such as trembling, difficulty sleeping, fluctuating sleep cycles, irritable moods, or frequent mood swings, cut down on coffee immediately.
You can consult your doctor for advice about the optimum coffee intake for your health and body type. While coffee may have an impressive bevy of benefits, they should not be used in place of a well-balanced, nutritious diet. Moreover, if you are not a coffee drinker, it is not compulsory for you to start now. All of these benefits can be obtained from a diet that is rich in fresh foods, fruits and vegetables. Stay happy, stay healthy and make the right food choices!