According to the National Coffee Association 54 percent of adults in the United States drink coffee on a regular basis. What follows a statistic like that is the bad reputation that precedes the caffeinated beverage and the assumption that more bad news will surround a favorite morning ritual for most of us. Coffee is often associated to late night cram sessions in the library during finals or a diuretic for some.
The worst response my overall health has ever contributed to a morning coffee was the anger and irritability that occurs before I get mine. But I feel my cravings are mental, and linked solely to the routine of a cup before I mentally and physically start the day.
With such a bad rap, many coffee regulars have tried tea as a substitute. Tea has been advertised to be a healthier alternative to coffee and many have steered clear of java because of this. But new research has been uncovered and coffee seems to be at the head of the pack. What does this mean for coffee advocates like myself? Maybe nothing but I'm open to any positive news on the horizon.
Some benefits to your daily cup are a lower risk for colon cancer, liver cancer, and Parkinson’s disease. Other lowered risks include that of developing type 2 diabetes. Some long term effects could result in a lower risk of dementia and Alzheimer’s disease in people who drink three to five cups of coffee a day.
What may be the contributing factor to much of the health benefits is the antioxidants that are packed in each bean. While it is not the most abundant source of antioxidants that we can find, coffee is consumed at a much higher and regular consumption level than other antioxidant-providing foods.
Where coffee gets its bad reputation from lies primarily in the amount of caffeine in each cup. Caffeine can be harmful, causing problems such as anxiety or lack of sleep. But there are many other components to coffee that have been hidden under its caffeine stigma. Researches at Texas A&M University have speculated that acids inside coffee may curb the growth of bad natural bacteria in our bodies and promote the growth of healthy ones. Other components may have the capacity to develop an estrogen-like hormone. Estrogen is thought to contain components that limit the chance of colon caner.
None of these findings have been confirmed and further, more isolated research must be conducted in order to conclude any of the health benefits of coffee in our daily lives. Even so, I feel better already. I can always hope that one day we will be given the green flag on my morning addiction but I know tomorrow my java will taste that much more delicious knowing that I may be combating bad bacteria and curbing health problems in my later years.