How many of you have experienced the aromatic fragrance floating in from the warm cup clutched in your hand and the sweet yet bitter taste of the dark drink? How many of you have curled up somewhere during the wintertime in darkness with a cup of coffee by your side to provide you with some much-needed energy and warmth?
Of course, all of us love coffee. It is something like a fuel for most people; in fact, they run solely of coffee. It is a staple part of Western culture and, not surprisingly, caffeine is the most popular psychoactive drug in the world. Humans have been drinking coffee for centuries. But the question arises; is coffee good for our health? Or are we consuming something harmful for our body?
The drink has been pointed out as the culprit of cardiovascular diseases, and this has been supported by researches from the 1980s and 90s. It had also been associated with increased risk of cancer because of the presence of acrylamide, a carcinogenic substance. However, recent studies have shown that no, coffee is not carcinogenic, unless it is drunk very hot ie. above the temperature of 65C.
So, getting that out of the way, now let us get to the good benefits of coffee.
Coffee increases our energy and helps us focus. This is an extremely common fact. All of us know this, and takes coffee primarily because of the caffeine content so that we can stay awake during long nights or to boost our energy. Although not widely known, coffee also increases our brain function. In the brain, caffeine blocks adenosine and when When this happens, the amount of other neurotransmitters like norepinephrine and dopamine increases and leads to enhanced firing of neurons.
Caffeine is also found in almost every supplementary food which makes fats to burn. Guess why? Well it’s because caffeine aids in burning fat. Studies show that caffeine can boost your metabolic rate by 3–11%.
Besides, coffee reduced the risk of Type 2 Diabetes. Type 2 Diabetes is a major problem in the world today, affecting millions of people. Various Studies prove that people who drink the most coffee have a 23–50% lower risk of getting Diabetes. One such study showed a reduction of around sixty seven percent. The reason for this is not currently known.
And then, cancer. It is one of the most common diseases in the world, and leads to millions of deaths yearly. Coffee consumption shows protection against liver and colorectal cancer and Coffee drinkers have up to a forty percent lower risk of liver cancer.
On the other hand, coffee is seen as a culprit for increasing blood pressure. However, this only leads to a rise of only 3–4 mm/Hg. The effect is small and usually dissipates if you drink coffee regularly. It may lead to elevated blood pressure in some people. But studies show that coffee drinkers have a 20% lower risk of stroke.
Hence, considering all of this, coffee does have a lot of benefits. So next time you crave a hot drink, put together a cup of coffee, because there’s nothing better than that for your body, and your mind.