5 Health Benefits of Coffee
Our health should always be a top priority, but many of us don’t realize that we may be improving our health without even realizing it. We’re not talking about long workouts or extreme diets; we’re referring to the delicious cup of coffee that most of us start our day with. Although many of us drink coffee to satisfy our cravings or get an extra boost of caffeine, these reasons are only the beginning of what coffee can do for you. Coffee has many health benefits, but we would probably never notice since they’re disguised behind a delicious and warming flavor.
5 Health Benefits of Coffee
1. Promotes Weight Management
Many studies have shown a connection between coffee and weight management. There are two main reasons. The first is because those who drink coffee are more likely to meet the recommended amount of physical activity, which helps promote weight management and a healthier lifestyle.
In addition, research shows that coffee has the ability to “reduce fat storage through suppression of adipocyte functions, and support of gut microbiota.” Even more, black coffee is low calorie and has a presence of antioxidants and chlorogenic acids that help promote weight loss.
2. Lower Risk of Depression
Many of us look forward to our morning cup of coffee, but we probably don’t realize that it can actually improve our mental health as well. This study concludes that coffee and caffeine consumption were significantly associated with decreased risk of depression. This may be due to its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, as well as its ability to block receptors in consumers' brains from binding with a chemical that is known for causing fatigue and depression.
3. Lower Risk of Type 2 Diabetes
Increasing your coffee consumption has been connected with decreasing your chances of developing type 2 diabetes. The exact percentage depends on the specific study, as there are factors that could affect the number, such as the length of time that the increased consumption is maintained and whether you’re drinking decaffeinated or caffeinated coffee. That said, drinking three to four cups of coffee a day has shown results ranging from 6 to 11% decrease in the risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
Since both decaffeinated and caffeinated coffee can have a positive impact, many people believe that the cause isn’t the caffeine itself, but rather the properties that the coffee contains. This review of 30 studies states that some of the possible mechanisms include its thermogenic, antioxidative, and anti-inflammatory effects.
4. Improves Heart Health
Coffee contains over 1,000 different chemical compounds, some of which have been linked to having positive effects on heart disease. This review on coffee consumption and cardiovascular disease states that the regular consumption of 3 to 5 cups of coffee per day is associated with a 15% reduction in the risk of cardiovascular disease. Furthermore, this review states that, “coffee consumption reduces the risk of coronary heart disease, heart failure, arrhythmia, stroke, CVD and all causes of mortality.”
5. Reduced Risk of Parkinson’s Disease
Drinking coffee regularly may reduce the risk of neurodegenerative diseases, such as Parkinson’s disease. The first evidence of this came from the Honolulu Heart Program, which studied over 8,000 men over a 30-year period. The study showed that the daily consumption of 784 mg/kg or more a day during mid-life can reduce the risk of developing Parkinson’s disease at the age of 65.
Since then, more studies have been done. As stated in this 2020 review, “Systemic analysis of 120 observation studies have firmly established that regular human consumption of caffeine is associated with reduced risk for PD.”
Coffee is a great supplement to any diet, and can have long-term effects such as the ones listed in this article. That said, it’s important to remember that it should be used as a compliment to an otherwise healthy lifestyle. Although the health benefits of coffee are promising, other healthy habits should be prioritized in order to live a truly healthy life.