Coffee: Medically Helpful or Harmful?
The effects of coffee on the body have been debated back and forth over the years. First you would hear it had a positive effect on the body and next you would hear you should not drink it. When I opened my coffee shop, Perks and Passions, years ago, and was looking at transitioning from traditional medicine to integrated medicine, I was told those two ideas were incompatible with each other since coffee was not good for you, and was encouraged to close my coffee shop.
However, over the past 15 years, more scientific studies have showed coffee does have medicinal value and absolutely has no harmful effects over time when you drink approximately 1-4 cups a day.
One of the largest studies came out of the New England Journal of Medicine, 2012, Association of coffee drinking with total and cause-specific mortality by Freeman ND etal. Approximately 400,000 people between 50 and 71 years old were asked how much coffee they consumed a day and then were followed for 12 years. Those who consumed approximately 4 cups a day, or 24 oz, had a 12% (men) to 16% (women) decrease in risk of death. Drinking one cup a day was associated with a 5-6 % decrease in risk of death.
These percentages are actually quite huge when you consider the number of people in the study and the number of people who drink coffee around the world.
The causes of death from infections, heart disease, stroke, respiratory disease, accidents, injuries, and infections were less in the coffee drinkers. There also are studies that show coffee drinkers have a lower incidence of Alzheimers, Parkinson’s, and Type II Diabetes. One study showed a 30% decrease in risk of death in people with Type II Diabetes who drank coffee versus those with Type II Diabetes who did not drink coffee. Another study showed a 20% decrease risk of stroke. (2) Even the incidence of colorectal cancer was decreased by 15%(3) and liver cancer by 40%. (4)
The reasoning behind these numbers is thought to be the antioxidant effect of coffee. Even when decaf coffee was consumed, the percent decreased risk of disease were the same, so caffeine itself was probably not a factor.
Studies have shown that some people get more antioxidants from coffee than from their consumption of fruits and vegetables!(1)
Who has the Best Coffee In Pittsburgh?
In my opinion, KLVN Coffee Lab
Today I find the best coffee sold in Pittsburgh to be from KLVN Coffee Lab (pronounced Calvin). I highly recommend you to try it. It is a new local roaster company whose coffee sourcing is ” sweet, clean, and in rare possession of beautiful qualities”.
KLVN travels the world to bring to us the finest, most exotic coffees in the world from small sustainable coffee farms. Then they finely roast the coffee to bring out its best qualities and flavorsYou can find it at Zen Juice in Aspinwall or in my office, in Millie’s coffee ice cream, or go to their website , KLVNcoffee.com.
Being a big supporter of the quality of coffee produced by small sustainable and therefore organic coffee farms, KLVN donates back a percentage of profits to the farmers who run these farms. The coffee beans are naturally organic but not certified organic as the cost of organic certification is too high for these small farms.
Knowing coffee gives you Vitamins B2, B3, B5 (riboflavin, Niacin, Pantothenic acid) manganese, potassium, and magnesium.
Go ahead drink and enjoy organic coffee knowing you are doing something very good for your body!
Coffee is Actually Healthy!
- Intakes of Antioxidants in Coffee, Wine, and Vegetables Are Correlated with Plasma Carotenoids in Humans1 Svilass et al. The American Society for Nutritional Sciences 2004.
- The Impact of Green Tea and Coffee Consumption of the Reduced Risk of Stroke Incidence in Japanese Population. Japan Public Helath Center-Based Study. KibuboY et al.
- Caffeinated and decaffeinated coffee and risk of colorectal cancer. AJof Clinical Nutritiion. April 2012 SinhaR et al.
- Coffee consumption and risk of liver Cancer. GI vol 132,issue 5, May 2007. Pg1740-1745