Coffee is one of the most consumed drinks around the world and it is not by chance. Its popularity is largely due to its ability to make us feel more energized, but also to bringing people together, stimulating conversations, keeping you awake, and simply being an affordable little pleasure.
There is a whole culture around coffee but it is also surrounded by a long history of debate about its benefits or dangers.
Do you want to know more about coffee? Keep reading!
COFFEE: TYPES AND ORIGIN
African tribes enjoyed coffee long before us. It is estimated that it began to be consumed in s. XI in Africa, and commonly in Europe in the 15th century. Today, more than half of the world's coffee is produced in the American continent and is enjoyed by millions of people.
Coffee beans are the seeds of a fruit called coffee cherry, which is small, round and ripe, with an intense red color. Cherries grow on a bush or tree called a coffee tree. Each variety of coffee tree has a different flavor but most of the coffee we consume comes from Arabica or Robusta.
- Arabica: It is a delicate plant that needs to be grown in mountainous areas with moderate rainfall and constant temperatures. It is softer, sweeter and more intense and difficult to grow.
- Robust: It is more resistant to climate changes and diseases, it is grown at a lower altitude and its harvesting is easier. It is stronger, bitter and has more caffeine and antioxidants.
Coffee is a mixture of more than 1,000 components, among them its caffeine content, Vitamin B2, magnesium and polyphenols (antioxidants) stand out. The amounts vary depending on the grain, its roast, the type of grinding and its preparation method.
IF IT HAS SO MANY BENEFITS, WHAT IS THE PROBLEM?
Despite its many benefits, coffee doesn't have the best reputation. In 1991, the WHO included coffee on a list of possible carcinogens. It was removed from the list in 2016, backed by research showing that consuming it was not associated with any additional risk of cancer.
The bad reputation it had for decades left many myths to talk about.
Does coffee cause insomnia ? Does it dehydrate ? Is it just caffeine ? Does it increase the risk of cancer and cardiovascular diseases ?
WE DISMANTLE THE MYTHS
- Myth 1: Coffee causes insomnia: Coffee contains caffeine, a central nervous system stimulant that increases our alertness and energy levels. Each person's sensitivity is different and depends on factors such as metabolism or the amounts of caffeine they are used to on a regular basis. Most people who drink one or two cups of coffee in the morning do not suffer from sleep disorders. If you are sensitive to caffeine, reduce your consumption so that your body can get used to it and try not to drink coffee 6-9 hours before bed.
Myth 2: Coffee is dehydrating: Caffeine has a mild diuretic effect, however, the liquid consumed with coffee is usually greater than the amount you lose when you urinate. This means that although it acts as a diuretic, drinking coffee in moderation does not cause dehydration ( study ).
Myth 3: Coffee = caffeine: Coffee is not just caffeine. 1 8-ounce cup of brewed coffee contains 94.8 mg of caffeine but also contains a large amount of antioxidants that help us reduce aging and prevent diseases ( study ).
Myth 4: Coffee increases the risk of cardiovascular diseases and cancer: This idea came from studies from years ago that, upon further investigation, proved that there was a confusion between correlation and causality. In recent meta-analyses, coffee consumption is associated with a reduction in cancer risk of 18% ( study ). Additionally, evidence suggests that drinking coffee regularly reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease ( study , study , study ).
So much information in one blog, but don't worry, we'll summarize it for you.
Coffee can be very healthy and useful but we believe that it is often abused.
The idea is to drink coffee because you enjoy that moment and for all the benefits it brings you, but not because you need it to function.
It can be a great ally to have that extra energy and concentration in the morning, but trying to leave all the responsibility on coffee is not a good idea. Remember that coffee is not the solution to not getting enough sleep nor is it essential to be able to function.
If you suffer from stress or anxiety, or often have trouble sleeping, our recommendation is that you limit your coffee consumption.
We repeat, we love coffee! But do you know the real reason why we like matcha tea so much? Due to its content of L-theanine, an amino acid that helps improve concentration and sleep quality in addition to providing that feeling of calm-alertness.
Oh, if coffee had L-Theanine... can you imagine?
Tip: Don't spoil your coffee with sugar. You will be reducing its benefits and it will give you a high that will soon be accompanied by a drop in energy. Don't ruin your coffee with sugary creamers either. Don't enter that vicious circle or turn your day into a roller coaster.