Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Black Gold: Coffee

With finals on the horizon, I figure there is no time like the present to blog about coffee since most of you will be sustaining yourself on it for the next couple of days.  Now for this blog, I am just going to focus on plain old coffee, not your $5 tall, skinny, double shot, mocha latte with half the foam…

The Numbers
Coffee by itself is naturally calorie free, contains no carbs, fat or protein. It does contain some vitamins and minerals, but the two most important things of note are caffeine and antioxidants.

Benefits of Coffee
Well, the most obvious one is it keeps you alert/feel less tired/increase energy levels. Some of the other benefits of coffee include:
  • Appetite suppressant: Meaning it holds of those hunger pains for a little bit.
  • Slightly increases your metabolism: Read-you burn a little bit more calories, not really a significant amount though.
  • Improves physical performance: Makes sense. When I am all jacked up on Mountain Dew, I feel like I could run a marathon too.
  • Diuretic: Read-makes you have to urinate. I am not sure if this would be considered a “benefit” or not but I am just going to leave it here.
  • Good source of antioxidants: Dorky fact-For those with a Western Diet (Americans) coffee is the main source of antioxidants. Yes, coffee is a good source of antioxidants much like fruits and vegetables; however people just are more likely to drink coffee than eat their fruits and vegetables.
  • May help prevent diseases such as: type 2 diabetes, Parkinson’s disease, liver disease, may lower risk of liver cancer, and despite the popular myth may actually be good for the heart.

Personally, coffee helps me focus (aka helps me write these blogs), so if you are at least mildly entertained by my blog, thank coffee.

Are there people who shouldn’t drink coffee?
Yes! Those people include people with high blood pressure and pregnant women (it is ok for pregnant men J). Coffee does mildly raise blood pressure so it may not be the best option for those with high blood pressure. For those that are pregnant, a little coffee in moderation is ok, but you want to be a little more mindful, I mean you are not just eating and drinking for yourself. You also have a tiny human who you are “feeding” as well who might not appreciate the caffeine.  

Over doing it
The saying is true, you can have too much of a good thing. Case in point chocolate…

Just to reiterate the above meme, MODERATION. It is the word that everybody hates. Anyways, drinking too much coffee can cause some issues for you such as anxiety and insomnia. Personally, I don’t enjoy shakiness or chest pains, but hey to each their own.

Oh, and don’t forget the fact that nobody likes coffee breath…

Breaking it down
Is coffee healthy? Yes, coffee in and of itself is healthy. It is the stuff that you may add to it is where you need to practice moderation, even if you are adding Splenda and soy milk. All that being said, I am going to tie a little disclaimer on to this; Just because coffee is healthy does not mean that you should drink 10 cups a day, one or two should suffice. While I am at it, I find it a little sad that the single largest source of antioxidants in the Western diet is from coffee; can we change that please by oh, I don’t know, eating more fruits and vegetables?!? Well I am off to go grab my coffee so I can at least pretend to listen when my coworkers talk to me today J 

Until next time!

Keep it Fresh,
Keep it Green,


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