Coffee is something many people cannot start their day without. The energy provided by coffee along with the increase in brain function and alertness makes it a staple among the working class throughout the world. It is considered a drug in the health community in the same sense that nicotine or alcohol are. There is a lot of talk regarding the risks to one’s health that the beverage carries along with its energy benefits. So what exactly is your morning beverage doing for or against you?
For starters, coffee contains many things…..and caffeine, although the seemingly main component, isn’t exactly the “star” ingredient at least where our health is concerned. Coffee also contains various antioxidants, nutrients, and vitamins that are actually essential to our overall well-being.
Here are Several of the Nutrients You Can Find Per 8oz. Cup
- Manganese: 3% of the RDA.
- Magnesium: 2% of the RDA.
- Potassium: 3% of the RDA.
- Vitamin B1 (Thiamin): 2% of the RDA.
- Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin): 11% of the RDA.
- Vitamin B3 (Niacin): 2% of the RDA.
- Vitamin B5 (Pantothenic Acid): 6% of the RDA.
- Phosphorus: 1% of the RDA.
- Folate: 1% of the RDA.
The high levels of antioxidants are statistically proven to assist in the prevention of various cancers including throat, mouth, liver, prostate and colon. The benefits don’t stop there either. Coffee contains polyphenols- a substance that studies show prevents inflammation in the brain. The phenols also have been shown to prevent oxidative stress.
According to the Mayo Clinic‘s website: “Studies have shown that coffee may have health benefits, including protecting against Parkinson’s disease, type 2 diabetes and liver disease, including liver cancer. It also appears to improve cognitive function and decrease the risk of depression.”
A study that took place in 2013 among college students showed a 45% drop in suicide risk for students that consumed 2-3 cups of coffee per day. If that isn’t enough to make you want to run to your local cafe further studies show that those who drink coffee on a daily basis live longer! The largest study to date, a joint project last year by the NIH’s National Cancer Institute and AARP that followed 400,000 men and women ages 50 to 71 for more than 10 years, found that those who regularly drank coffee — either decaf or regular — had a lower risk of overall death than did nondrinkers. In particular, the coffee drinkers were less likely to die from heart disease, respiratory disease, stroke, injuries and accidents, diabetes, and infections.
So what exactly can we take from this? Contrary to popular belief, coffee actually has more health benefits in moderate amounts than it does severe health risks. However some people have certain genetic dispositions or health conditions that cause them to experience more discomfort than your “average joe”. As long as you keep it to a few cups in the morning to kickstart your day, and abide by personal dietary restrictions you can reap all the benefits coffee has to offer. Not only will it supplement your current preventative supplements and dietary maintenance but it can also provide a delightful mood and productivity boost. So enjoy your morning beverage and its health benefits too!