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Health Benefits of Coffee

If drinking coffee is one of your favorite rituals, you’ll be glad to know that recent studies have debunked the myth that coffee is bad for the body and are instead showing numerous benefits of coffee consumption that affect the mind, body and spirit. The caffeine in coffee and the distinctive great taste are the main reasons people drink it, but a warm mug of java brings much more to the body than caffeine. Coffee is loaded with antioxidants, three B Vitamins: Riboflavin, Pantothenic Acid and Niacin, and the nutrients Potassium, Manganese and Magnesium.

While studies seem to indicate that most of the advantages of drinking coffee apply to both high-test coffee and decaffeinated, there are several areas where it appears that it is the caffeine that creates the good health. The two most prominent diseases where regular coffee seems to provide some protection that decaf does not are Parkinson’s and Type II Diabetes.

Since the long-held belief was that coffee was bad for you, you may be wondering what has changed. New studies have followed the lives of coffee drinkers and non-coffee drinkers for more than 20 years. The results indicate that while there are some disadvantages of drinking coffee, the benefits are more numerous.

Advantages of Drinking Coffee

How Coffee Affects The Mind

Most folks know that a cup of Joe in the morning delivers the jolt they want to get awake and functioning. The caffeine in coffee beans is a well-known (and much beloved) stimulant. That liquid stimulant pours into your body, energizes you and flows directly to the brain. Coffee actually makes you smarter by blocking “an inhibitory neurotransmitter called Adenosine,” which causes other neurotransmitters to increase and your brain’s neurons to fire better, according to an article by Kris Gunnars, “Proven Health Benefits of Coffee (No. 1 is My Favorite).”

There are many health benefits that come with drinking coffeeStay healthy with coffee! Photo by Beverley Goodwin

Coffee also appears to actually protect your brain. Both Gunnars and Kristin Kirkpatrick, M.S., R.D., L.D., manager of Wellness Nutrition Services at the Cleveland Clinic Wellness Institute, note in separate articles that among the advantages of drinking coffee are the lowered risk for dementia, Alzheimer’s and strokes, along with a lowered risk of Parkinson’s Disease for those who drink coffee with caffeine.

These neurodegenerative diseases are caused by changes in the brain that studies indicate coffee might keep from developing. So, not only does coffee make you smarter and more attentive, it also keeps the brain healthy and disease-free.

How the Body Benefits From Coffee

The benefits of coffee to the body include both the general and the more specific. Coffee helps burn fat, keeps you fit and aids in digestion, so your entire body is in better shape. Since caffeine boosts the body’s metabolism by up to 10 percent or more, the body burns fat faster.

Coffee can also enhance your athletic performance. The reason is that caffeine increases the Adrenaline in your blood stream, causing your “fight or flight” instincts to kick in. This physical reaction signals the body to break fat cells down into fatty acids for use as fuel. Groups of athletes were tested, and the test results appear to indicate that caffeine can help improve physical performance by an average of 11 or 12 percent.

Another of the benefits of coffee is that it appears to protect the body against a variety of diseases. The liver in particular benefits as coffee inhibits the development of cirrhosis and liver cancer. Coffee drinkers have as much as a 40 percent less risk of liver cancer than do non-coffee drinkers, according to the tests. Other cancers inhibited by coffee drinking include colorectal and oral.

How Coffee Contributes to a Good Spirit

Even when life is good, people can still feel gloomy, down, depressed. Fortunately, studies have shown that one of the benefits of coffee is that it fights depression and makes you happier. Just knowing that among the advantages of drinking coffee is that people tend to live longer might be another great mood booster.

Drinking Coffee can fight depression Drinking Coffee makes you happy! Photo by John Connor

Disadvantages of Drinking Coffee

Despite all the positive news about the benefits of coffee, there are still some disadvantages. According to Donald Hensrud, M.D., in an article published at www.mayoclinic.org, some of the disadvantages of drinking coffee are higher cholesterol levels and a risk of heart disease.

The tests seem to indicate that elevated cholesterol levels may accompany an unusually high consumption of boiled or espresso coffee. Another disadvantage, the higher risk of heart disease, seems to apply to people who possess a fairly common genetic mutation that causes caffeine to break down more slowly in their bodies.

Despite the disadvantages of drinking coffee, all three experts consulted and others published in a variety of locations agree that the benefits of coffee drinking greatly outweigh the disadvantages. So, do something good for yourself; fire up that coffeepot and brew up your favorite beverage with Gourmesso coffee capsules.

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