Do you love your morning cup of coffee? Well, drink up! According to a European study, your daily cup of coffee reduces oxidative damage to your DNA by an impressive 40 percent! Coffee contains polyphenols which help protect cells from oxidation, regulate insulin and reduce inflammation. Another study published in the journal Molecular Nutrition & Food Research showed that people who drink four daily cups of coffee lost 1.5 pounds of body fat in four weeks.
Lab testing has found that coffee has more antioxidants than most vegetables and fruits. For these benefits, the coffee has to be a special Arabica coffee blend rich in unroasted (green) and roasted bean compounds which gives coffee its antioxidant boost, which accounts for its apparent power to reduce DNA damage.
The caffeine in coffee may help prevent diabetes, Parkinson’s disease, gallstones, and increase bile flow. (Jonathan Wright, M.D.)
Coffee and Diabetes Coffee has already been shown to be protective against diabetes due to its effect on insulin. A report in the Journal of Agricultural & Food Chemistry reported that people who drink four or more cups of coffee per day have a 50% lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
Coffee Health Benefits Outweigh the Risks Researchers at Harvard Medical School say drinking coffee helps prevent diseases such as Parkinson’s, heart disease and cancer. Preliminary research findings involving coffee suggest that coffee may be protective against obesity-associated cancers, as well as cancers associated with insulin and estrogen.
Scientists at Harvard School of Public Health (published in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute), conducted a study in which men who regularly drank coffee had a lower risk of developing prostate cancer. Men who consumed 1-3 cups of coffee daily reduced their risk of the deadly form of prostate cancer by 30% --- and, men who drank the most coffee lowered their risk of lethal prostate cancer by 60%.
In another study, the American Journal of Alzheimer's Disease and Other Dementias reported that caffeine may have a protective effect on the likelihood of developing dementia and Alzheimer's disease.
Who Should Avoid Coffee? Pregnant women and women planning to become pregnant should avoid coffee. Women who consume coffee while pregnant tend to have increased risks of small infants at birth. Just two cups of coffee ingested during pregnancy may be enough to affect fetal heart development and reduce heart function over the entire lifespan of the child.
In addition, those with anxiety issues, insomniacs and adrenal fatigue should limit their intake of coffee. Coffee stimulates your adrenals, the hormones that activate your fight or flight response. If your adrenal hormones are constantly stimulated, your adrenal glands may eventually burn out.
Other facts to consider Excess coffee consumption promotes dehydration. Long-term, excessive coffee consumption can deplete your B vitamin and calcium supply. In addition, some women can drink all the coffee they want without any problems, but unfortunately, women with fibrocystic breast problems are always caffeine-sensitive and should avoid coffee.
Coffee is great before exercise (pre-training), however the worst thing you can ingest after exercise (post training) unless you want a cortisol fest and added belly fat. You want high cortisol when you train, NOT after. Caffeine is also known to enhance athletic performance by increasing endurance.
Opt for organic coffee versus non-organic coffee due to the high pesticide content in non-organic coffee. Consumer Reports magazine cautioned readers last year about the negative health effects of pesticides. The nonprofit Environmental Working Group (ewg.org) urges consumers to minimize exposure to pesticides whenever possible.
Make sure to rotate your brands of coffee. One of my personal favorites is PowerCafe, a combination of organic dark roast Arabica coffee with Yerba Mate. Tasty!
I love my coffee with organic heavy cream and a pinch of cinnamon. Need a sweetener? Ditch the chemical-loaded artificial sweeteners in the pink, yellow and blue packs and instead use the green packs, SweetLeaf Stevia – easy to carry in your purse, briefcase or keep at your desk. Pass on the sweetened syrups and flavored creamers (high in trans fats), both loaded in calories, and definitely stay away from sugar-free syrups which are full of artificial sweeteners and high-fructose corn syrup.
Excuse me while I brew up another cup of coffee.
Copyright © Paula Owens