Up until about a decade ago, coffee was considered one of the most villainous beverages in the modern human diet. Indeed, I can still remember my family doctor suggesting in the midst of my second year of college that I really needed to cut back from my pot-a-day habit.
“Talk to me after graduation,” I replied.
Even back then, before I started digging into natural health and the healing abilities of food, I knew deep down that coffee wasn’t evil – just misunderstood. Wishful thinking? Maybe, but it also turned out to be correct thinking. Over 19,000 studies have been conducted on the world’s most popular beverage (sorry tea drinkers, but it’s true) and science has proven that drinking coffee (regular, not decaf) is substantially more ‘good for you’ than it is bad.
So enjoy your cup of delicious java because you love it and because you deserve it, but also because of the following 12 scientifically proven excuses reasons that you should keep drinking coffee every day.
Coffee Is One of the Best Natural Sources of Antioxidants
Coffee is the number one source of antioxidants in the average person’s diet and it’s one of the best natural sources in the world. Furthermore, chlorogenic acid – which is found almost exclusively in coffee beans – is one of the most powerful and effective antioxidants for the prevention of cardiovascular disease.
Coffee Contains Magnesium
With a long list of responsibilities including immune response, nerve and muscle function, calcium regulation, cellular replication and over 300 enzymatic processes, magnesium is the most important nutrient in the entire human body. It also represents one of the most common nutritional deficiencies in the world. While this essential nutrient is absorbed more readily through contact with skin, drinking coffee every day can also go a long way toward boosting your magnesium levels and keeping your body running smoothly.
Coffee Increases Resting Metabolism
Caffeine – the infamous stimulant which is also the most commonly used psychoactive drug in the world – can boost your resting metabolic rate by up to 11%. Not only will this increase your overall energy levels, it can also help you to burn more fat on a daily basis, regardless of any other factors such as diet or exercise.
Interested to know more about natural ways to boost your metabolism and have more energy? You can find 10 natural science-backed cheats in this article. Also, be sure to read these 22 Quick Tricks to Sky-Rocket Your Energy Without the Come Down.
Coffee Boosts Physical Performance
Caffeine stimulates the neurons which send signals throughout the body to break down fat cells and use them for energy. That said, if you’re planning a heavy workout at the gym, drinking a cup of coffee about 30 minutes beforehand will boost your energy levels so you can work out harder, build muscle faster and increase your body’s fat-burning potential.
Coffee Improves Liver Health
While science hasn’t come to any solid conclusions, yet, studies suggest that caffeine, kahweol and cafestol (two forms of cholesterol found in coffee), as well as chlorogenic and cafeic acids (both antioxidants) all have positive effects on liver health.
Caffeine and its main metabolite paraxanthine slow down the progress of liver fibrosis, cirrhosis or hardening of the liver and liver cancer.
Kawheol and cafestol also present anti-carcinogenic properties which may explain why coffee offers anti-cancer benefits which other caffeinated beverages lack.
The antioxidants chlorogenic acid and cafeic acid not only protect the body against damage from free radicals, they also present anti-viral properties, particularly by inhibiting replication of the Hepatitis B virus.
Coffee Keeps Your Gallbladder Healthy
Being in the habit of drinking coffee can reduce your likelihood of developing gallstones and gallbladder disease by up to 45% for men and 28% for women. While scientific research is still inconclusive as to the exact mechanism behind these figures, studies have found that the combination of caffeine and other compounds naturally present in coffee increase the body’s production of cholecystokinin – a digestive hormone responsible for triggering gallbladder contractions and the release of bile – which may help to flush cholesterol from the gallbladder, preventing stones from forming.
Coffee Wards off Neurodegenerative Diseases
Alzheimer’s, Dementia & Parkinson’s are some of the scariest and most-common neurodegenerative diseases in the world. Unfortunately, there are no known cures for these heart-breaking disorders, however there are some highly effective natural preventatives and coffee is one of them.
Scientific studies have shown that coffee drinkers have a 32 – 60% lower risk of developing Parkinson’s disease and up to a 65% lower risk of developing Alzheimer’s and Dementia.
Coffee Reduces Your Risk of Type II Diabetes
People who drink coffee have a much lower risk of developing type II diabetes. Of the many studies conducted on this subject, the magic number appears to be about 7% per average number of cups consumed daily. So drinking 5 cups (around 30 ounces or 900 mls) of coffee per day would lower your risk of developing the disease by an incredible 35%!
Coffee Makes You Smart
Caffeine, the stimulant which has given coffee such a bad reputation, is carried from the intestines to the bloodstream and into the brain. Once there, caffeine blocks the neurotransmitter adenosine – one of your body’s natural ‘downers’ which is involved in promoting sleep and relaxation. While this is a major contributing factor to the jittery feeling that excessive caffeine consumption has on most people and the main reason to not drink coffee right before bedtime, it also has the positive side-effect of increasing brain activity. By inhibiting adenosine, caffeine clears a path for other neurotransmitters like dopamine and norepinephrine to do their work, increasing the firing rate of neurons and improving mood, memory, concentration and reaction time.
Coffee Drinkers Live Longer
With all of the health benefits which we’ve already discussed, it should come as no surprise that coffee drinkers live longer than non-coffee drinkers. In three separate studies of over 180,000 men and women during a period of 18 – 24 years, scientist at the Universidad Autónoma de Madrid, Harvard School of Public Health, and National Institute for Health and Welfare in Helsinki, Finland discovered that people who consume coffee on a regular basis have between 20 – 30% lower risk of premature death than those who don’t.
Coffee Is An Excellent Carrier For Other Healthy Foods
Jazz up your morning cup of Joe with a tablespoon of coconut oil to add to its already substantial health benefits.
Add a shake or two of cinnamon to your java for an extra kick of antioxidant power, as well as the spice’s powerful energy bolstering, blood-sugar regulating and anti-bacterial properties. (Make sure to use true cinnamon so you can get the biggest natural health boost out of this incredible spice!)
A sprinkling of cardamom is another delicious way to add pizazz and even more amazing health benefits to your coffee. You can read more about the healing powers of cardamom here.
Or try infusing your coffee with a tablespoon of organic cocoa powder, douse it with a splash of milk or cream and add organic stevia powder to taste to create a blissful beverage with so many antioxidants, your free radicals will simply throw up their hands and surrender as soon as the delicious steamy goodness touches your lips!
Leftover Coffee Grounds Are Immensely Useful
Whether you choose to use them in the garden, for tidying around the house or to create your own homemade health and beauty products, leftover coffee grounds are an immensely handy substance to have around. Read more about the many brilliant ways to reuse old coffee grounds in this great do-it-yourself guide!