Lifestyle: The health effects of coffee are quite controversial. Depending on who you ask, it is either a super healthy beverage or incredibly harmful. But despite what you may have heard, there are actually plenty of good things to be said about coffee. For example, it is high in antioxidants and linked to a reduced risk of many diseases. However… it also contains caffeine, a stimulant that can cause problems in some people and disrupt sleep.
This article takes a detailed look at coffee and its health effects, examining both the pros and cons.
Health benefits of coffee
Coffee Can Improve Energy Levels and Make You Smarter
Coffee can help people feel less tired and increase energy levels. This is because it contains a stimulant called caffeine, which is actually the most commonly consumed psychoactive substance in the world.
After you drink coffee, the caffeine is absorbed into the bloodstream. From there, it travels into the brain.
Coffee Can Help You Burn Fat
There’s a good reason for that… caffeine is one of the very few natural substances that have actually been proven to aid fat burning. Several studies show that caffeine can boost the metabolic rate by 3-11%.
There Are Essential Nutrients in Coffee
Coffee is more than just black water. Many of the nutrients in the coffee beans do make it into the final drink. A single cup of coffee contains Riboflavin (Vitamin B2) ,Pantothenic Acid (Vitamin B5) , Manganese and Potassium , Magnesium and Niacin (B3)
Although this may not seem like a big deal, most people are drinking more than one cup per day. If you drink 3-4, then these amounts quickly add up.
Coffee May Lower Your Risk of Type II Diabetes
Diabetes is a gigantic health problem, currently afflicting about 300 million people worldwide. It is characterized by elevated blood sugars in the context of insulin resistance or an inability to secrete insulin. For some reason, coffee drinkers have a significantly reduced risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
Coffee Appears to Have Protective Effects on the Liver
The liver is an amazing organ that carries out hundreds of important functions in the body. Several common diseases primarily affect the liver, including hepatitis, fatty liver disease and others.
Coffee Can Fight Depression and Make You Happier
Depression is a serious mental disorder that causes a significantly reduced quality of life. It is incredibly common and about 4.1% of people in the U.S. currently meet the criteria for clinical depression. Women who drank 4 or more cups per day had a 20% lower risk of becoming depressed. Another study with 208,424 individuals found that those who drank 4 or more cups per day were 53% less likely to commit suicide.
Coffee Drinkers Have a Lower Risk of Some Types of Cancer
Cancer is one of the world’s leading causes of death and is characterized by uncontrolled growth of cells in the body. Coffee appears to be protective against two types of cancer… liver cancer and colorectal cancer. Liver cancer is the third leading cause of cancer death in the world, while colorectal cancer ranks fourth.
Coffee Does Not Cause Heart Disease and May Lower the Risk of Stroke
It is often claimed that caffeine can increase blood pressure. This is true, but the effect is small (3-4 mm/Hg) and usually goes away if you drink coffee regularly. However, the effect may persist in some people, so keep that in mind if you have elevated blood pressure. That being said, the studies do NOT support the myth that coffee raises the risk of heart disease. In fact, there is some evidence that women who drink coffee have a reduced risk of heart disease.
Coffee May Help You Live Longer
Given that coffee drinkers are less likely to get many diseases, it makes sense that coffee could help you live longer. There are actually several observational studies showing that coffee drinkers have a lower risk of death.
In two very large studies, drinking coffee was associated with a 20% lower risk of death in men and a 26% lower risk of death in women, over a period of 18-24 years.