Oh Coffee, how I love the…
I’ve had a love affair with coffee since my Junior year of College. I remember visiting my dad (hi Dad!) on one of my trips into Long Island when I was interning in NYC. My dad made me a cup of Joe with some Vanilla Coffeemate and I have been hooked ever since.
As I do with most everything I eat and drink, I do extensive research on its benefits and if it can be harmful in anyway. I’ve been putting this one off for decades, but it is now time to put it out into the world. Is Coffee good for us? Let’s dive in.
As we know, coffee is a popular beverage enjoyed by millions of people around the world. It is made from roasted coffee beans, which are then ground and brewed with hot water. The intended use of coffee is primarily as a stimulant due to its high caffeine content. Although there are decaf options now for more of the taste, if that is your jam.
Coffee has several benefits (yay!). Firstly, it can help increase alertness and improve cognitive function. The caffeine in coffee stimulates the central nervous system, making us feel more awake and focused. It can also enhance physical performance by increasing adrenaline levels and mobilizing fatty acids from fat tissues.
Additionally, coffee has been linked to various health benefits. It contains antioxidants that can help protect against certain diseases, such as type 2 diabetes, Parkinson's disease, and liver disease.
Side bar - When I talk about coffee consumption, it is drinking coffee black. -
However, it's important to note that coffee can have negative effects on some individuals. Excessive consumption of coffee can lead to caffeine dependency, which can cause withdrawal symptoms like headaches, irritability, and fatigue when trying to quit. It can also disrupt sleep patterns, leading to insomnia or poor sleep quality if consumed too close to bedtime.
Also, coffee can have different effects on different people. Some individuals may be more sensitive to caffeine and experience side effects like increased heart rate, anxiety, or digestive issues. It's important to listen to your body and moderate your coffee intake accordingly.
Last, and most concerning is that coffee has been found to have a potential negative impact on calcium levels in the body. When consumed in large amounts, coffee can interfere with the absorption of calcium, leading to a decrease in calcium levels. This is because coffee contains compounds called polyphenols, which can bind to calcium and prevent its absorption in the intestines. Additionally, coffee is a diuretic, meaning it increases urine production and can lead to increased calcium excretion through urine. It's important to note that the effect of coffee on calcium levels may vary depending on individual factors such as overall diet and calcium intake from other sources.
In conclusion, coffee has both benefits and negative side effects. If you are worried about calcium or maybe you have osteoporosis that runs in your family, you may start to limit your coffee consumption and focus on getting high calcium foods in your diet (think leafy green vegetables like kale and spinach, tofu, almonds, sesame seeds, and sardines). I can’t and won’t tell you to not drink coffee, because as many things, your body will process caffeine differently than your best friend. Listen to your body and it never hurts to get a CBC your annual physicals to monitor your health.
Until next time,