It was not so long ago that science was telling us coffee is bad for one’s health. But then it was good. And then it was bad again. If you are middle-aged or older, you know that the scientific opinion of coffee has flip-flopped more times than a politician on the campaign trail. So where do we stand for 2015? Overall, coffee appears to be beneficial to health in very measurable ways.
A spate of new research has been released over the last 18 months lending credence to the belief that moderate coffee consumption can be a factor in mitigating some serious health concerns. For example:
- Heart Disease – A South Korean study involving 25,000 coffee drinkers suggests that moderate coffee consumption can reduce the risks of heart disease by inhibiting the buildup of coronary artery calcium.
- Cancer – Yale researchers published a study this past January that confirmed previous evidence suggesting moderate coffee consumption reduces the risk of basal cell carcinoma (skin cancer).
- Multiple Sclerosis (MS) – Research data released this past February shows a definite link between moderate coffee consumption and lower risk of developing MS. The evidence was especially compelling among long-term coffee drinkers who had been consuming the beverage for 5 to 10 years.
The positive MS research, combined with what science already knows about diseases such as Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s, is leading researchers to take a serious look at the neuroprotective benefits of certain compounds found in coffee. There is growing speculation that some of these compounds could be used to treat a range of dementia disorders.
The Bad News about Coffee
In the introduction to this post, we said that coffee appears to be beneficial to health “on the whole.” We phrased it that way because not all of the research on coffee is positive. There is some bad news.
First of all, studies seem to indicate that how a person’s body reacts to coffee consumption directly relates to how beneficial it is. In addition, how a person responds is apparently linked to genetics. Some people are more genetically predisposed to the health benefits of coffee than others are.
Second, moderate consumption is considered between three and five cups per day. Furthermore, researchers consider a single cup of coffee to be 8 ounces. A person drinking three to four 16-ounce cups from the local coffee shop every day is consuming more than is considered beneficial. The amount of caffeine associated with that much coffee is likely to have some adverse health effects as well.
Lastly, it is possible that adding sugar and calorie-rich creamers to coffee can offset some of its health benefits. The best way to maximize the positives appears to be drinking 3 to 5 cups of black coffee daily.
Galaxie Coffee believes there are few things better than a really good cup of coffee. We strive to always provide a great coffee experience for our satisfied customers throughout the greater New York area.