Following on from my last post “Metabolism Boosting Coffee”, I thought I would talk about some of the other wonderful health benefits coffee can provide.
Firstly, the health benefits depend on whether you are drinking ‘good’ coffee or ‘bad’ coffee. As a general rule, coffee made with fresh beans is good for you but instant and ground coffee can vary considerably in their benefits. Many instant coffees contain mould toxins, and can even be mixed with very dubious additives such as chicory, corn, seed husks, soy beans, rice and even sticks!.
So, if you drink a beautiful, freshly ground bean coffee, what health benefits do you get?
Protection against Cancer
Research suggest that coffee is loaded with antioxidants and polyphenols that help protect the body against:-
- Prostate Cancer – The Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Centre found that drinking 4 or more cups of coffee a day reduced the risk to men of prostate cancer by 59%.
- Liver Cancer – Chinese researchers suggest there is a link between coffee drinking and the reduction in the risk of liver cancer, although further research is required.
- Breast Cancer – Canadian researchers also found a reduced risk of breast cancer associated with high coffee consumption.
Less Brain Inflammation
Disease in the body is caused by inflammation of cells and tissues. When this occurs in the brain it can lead to age-related decline in brain function and more serious problems such as dementia and Alzheimers disease. University of Illinois research has found that caffeine can block the signal that activates brain-based inflammation. This research is providing exciting new ways to help treat and prevent Alzheimers disease.
It makes you Happy!
Whilst I’m sure many mothers (like me) have already discovered the mood enhancing benefits of those few minutes enjoying your favourite cup of coffee, there is actual scientific research to support this. Apparently, caffeine binds to neurotransmitters that help balance your mood. A Study in ‘The Archives of Internal Medicine’ found that women who drank at least 4 cups daily were 20% less likely to become depressed. So, you see Husbands, we do NEED coffee!.
A Liver Detox
Coffee can lower abnormal liver enzymes levels and reduce your risk of cirrhosis liver disease. Research published in ‘Heptology’ found drinking 2 or more cups daily could reduce the risk of death from cirrhosis by 66%.
According to research in the US National Library of Medicine, coffee consumption of 4 cups or more a day provided a preventive effect on stroke risk. In addition, the American Heart Association research found those who drank 3-5 cups had the lowest risk of cardiovascular disease.
In addition to coffee’s metabolism boosting benefits, it can also help feed the microbiome in your gut. Bacteroidetes, a good gut bacteria, that’s associated with thinness, feeds off the polyphenols in coffee.
Overall, the consumption of 4 cups of coffee per day reduces the risk of death, from any cause, by 16% according to the American Journal of Epidemiology.
However, in the interest of being objective, there are negatives to coffee consumption. Caffeine increases heart rate and can cause a threat to coronary health. Pregnant women should avoid caffeine consumption, as should women suffering from postmenopausal problems. In terms of weight loss benefits, these will be limited if you enjoy your coffee supersized with full fat milk and added sugar and syrups. Like anything in life it’s all about balance and listening to what works for your body. I tend to limit my intake to two cups of coffee a day as I find that’s what makes me feel my best.
Let me know how you think coffee affects you and please share my post with your friends.
Sources: http://www.rodalewellness.com http://aje.oxfordjournals.org/content/180/8/763.abstract http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23433483 ; http://www.tandfonline.com ; http://news.aces.illinois.edu/content/caffeine-may-block-inflammation-linked-mild-cognitive-impairment