Coffee is the second most consumed beverage worldwide and is the leading contributor to a person’s caffeine intake. Not only is coffee high in caffeine but also rich in antioxidants and contains small amounts of micronutrients that your body relies on to function well.
There are many good reasons to be a coffee drinker in the twenty-first century. Coffee has become an integral part of working culture and a way to socialise with others. Not only does coffee have a positive impact on our social skills, studies have proven that coffee consumption has a number of health benefits too.
Coffee’s Positive Antioxidants
This popular beverage is rich in antioxidants including hydrocinnamic acids and polyphenols. Hydrocinnamic acids are effective at neutralising free radicals and preventing oxidative stress, while polyphenols may prevent a number of conditions such as heart disease, cancer and type 2 diabetes.
These naturally occurring qualities help to combat inflammation in the body and mitigate risk of disorders associated with it, like cardiovascular disease. Antioxidants are uniquely positioned to disarm and combat free radicals that enter and attack the body. Antioxidants can also protect against other diseases caused through oxidative stress, including cancer.
Most people consume around 1-2 grams of antioxidants per day through regular coffee drinking. Caffeine itself is classed as an antioxidant. You may be surprised to her that coffee possesses more antioxidants than herbal teas, fruits and vegetables.
So what are the major health benefits associated with coffee? Here is a list of the top 10 health benefits of drinking coffee:
1. Coffee Can Help You Burn Fat
Caffeine is one of the few natural substances proven to aid fat burning and is found in many commercial fat-burning supplements. It can boost your metabolic rate by 3-11 percent. Studies have indicated that caffeine can specifically increase fat burning as much as 10 percent in obese individuals and 29 percent in lean people.
This is provided however, you consume caffeine in moderation and adhere to a strict diet while also exercising. Drinking coffee all day long on its own will not help you lose weight. Coffee is a cognitive enhancer and helps battle fatigue enabling you to exercise for longer, reduces the perception of muscle pain and strengthens muscle contraction.
2. Coffee Can Improve Your Physical Performance
Coffee has been proven to aid in stimulating the nervous system, signalling fat cells to break down stores of body fat. It also signals to increase levels of epinephrine, which prepares the body for physical exertion, improving workout endurance.
Coffee's impact on physical performance is particularly profound when looking at endurance performance. One study found that 400mg of caffeine from coffee increased endurance in athletes. These athletes were able to cover 1.3-2 miles more than a placebo group.
3. Protection Against Alzheimer's Disease and Dementia
Alzheimer's disease is a common neurodegenerative disease and the leading cause of dementia worldwide. Studies have shown that coffee drinkers have up to a 66% lower risk of Alzheimer's disease.
It helps protect against cognitive decline, associated with these diseases, when drinking 3-5 cups of coffee a day. It does this by preventing the buildup of beta amyloid plaque that may contribute to the onset and progression of Alzeimer's.
4. Lowers the Risk of Cancer
Cancer is one of the leading causes of death, identified by an uncontrolled cell growth in the body. Coffee, however, appears to help protect against two types of cancer; liver and colorectal cancer.
Liver cancer is the third leading cause of cancer death in the world, while colorectal cancer ranks fourth. Multiple studies have found a positive link between coffee and the reduction in cancer risk. Studies have found that coffee drinkers have up to 50% lower risk of liver cancer.
5. It Lowers The Risk of Type 2 Diabetes
Type 2 diabetes impacts the lives of millions of people worldwide. It is often caused by insulin resistance and associated with elevated blood sugar levels, which can pose a risk. In recent years, studies have concluded that people who drink coffee have a 20-50% lower risk of getting Type 2 diabetes.
Researchers believe coffee is beneficial in keeping diabetes at bay by aiding the body use insulin and protecting insulin-producing cells, enabling for effective regulation of blood sugar, preventing subsequent tissue damage. One component of coffee in particular, known as caffeic acid, is particularly significant in reducing the toxic accumulation of abnormal levels of protein deposits often found in people with Type 2 diabetes.
6. May Result In Longer Life
Coffee can help you live longer and have a lower risk of death. Drinking coffee in several studies have shown to reduce the risk of death in men by 20 percent and 26 percent in women.
Those who drink 1-5 cups of coffee a day avoid diseases linked to premature death and can help you live longer.
7. Coffee Is a Rich Source of Antioxidants and Essential Nutrients
Coffee possesses a lot of nutritional value and contains a number of essential nutrients including Roboflavin, pantothenic acid, manganese, potassium, magnesium and niacin, all of which are recommended daily nutrients. As seen above, coffee is also a rich source of antioxidants that prevent or delay cell damage.
8. Coffee Ensures a Healthy Heart
Studies have found that moderate coffee drinkers have a 20% lower risk of developing heart disease or suffering from a heart attack. Coffee supports heart health by protecting against arterial damage caused by inflammation. The abundance of antioxidants in coffee fight against inflammation.
9. Coffee May Reduce The Risk Of Parkinson’s Disease
Parkinson’s disease is a chronic disorder that involves the malfunction and death of certain nerve cells in the brain. It is a progressive disease and symptoms get worse over time. Nearly 7 million people are living with Parkinson’s disease. Studies however have shown that a higher coffee and caffeine intake is associated with a significantly lower risk of developing Parkinson’s disease.
10. Coffee Is An Effective Brain Function Enhancer
In addition to improving your physical performance during exercise, coffee can also enhance cognitive functions in the brain. When you drink coffee, caffeine travels to the brain where it is responsible for enhancing the firing of neurons and increasing energy metabolism throughout your brain. Coffee, therefore, can give you that extra mental edge.
It's recommended to drink 1-2 cups of coffee a day to receive the advantages highlighted above. Brew and drink your coffee quickly, ensuring you don't drink the coffee too hot. Refrain from drinking coffee late in the day, as this will impact your quality of sleep. Attempt to always drink a cup of coffee before a workout session, to reap the endurance benefits caffeine has to offer.