Health

Take Anything…But My Coffee

Take Anything...But My CoffeeGovernments imposing bans on certain foods in order to protect us from ourselves is not all that unusual. From New York’s trans-fat ban to California’s ban on foie gras (which was later rescinded), the food police are a group that never seems to sleep. But coffee? Why would anyone try to ban what is arguably the most loved beverage in the universe?

Believe it or not, coffee has been the subject of numerous ban attempts in the past. According to writer and comedian Emmy Blotnick, there have been no fewer than five such incidents throughout history. We appreciate that none of them actually succeeded long-term. You can take away a lot of things, but please don’t take our coffee.

From Religion to Health Concerns

Knowing that a government would attempt to ban coffee is one thing, understanding why such a ban would be considered is something else entirely. Keep in mind that coffee consumption began primarily as a religious practice in Africa and the Middle East. That leads us to the first known coffee man put in place in Mecca during the early 16th century. The government at the time believed that coffee was potentially intoxicating and could lead to radical thinking that drifted outside religious norms.

There were also religious concerns about coffee when it first arrived in Europe. Church leaders attempted to convince Pope Clement VIII to ban it under the auspices of protecting the church and its members. They claimed that coffee was satanic in nature. However, the pope disagreed after trying some himself. His declaration that coffee was delicious is partly credited for its widespread acceptance across Europe.

Other coffee bans throughout history include a 1623 action in Constantinople by Murad IV, a mid-18th-century action in Sweden that banned both coffee and coffee paraphernalia, and a 1777 action by Prussia’s Frederick the Great. Of the five attempted coffee bans listed here, only the Prussian ban was not related to religion or health. Frederick wanted to get rid of the caffeinated beverage because he believed it got in the way of beer consumption.

What You Don’t Know Will Kill You

Sometimes, what you don’t know can kill you. That’s not the case with coffee. A lack of understanding about caffeine in centuries past led governments and scientists to make decisions about coffee that were totally unfounded. It’s very similar to absinthe bans of the last few centuries.

Coffee is a beverage that is both delicious and good for you when consumed in moderation. So go ahead and take anything you want, except our coffee.

Without stating the obvious, Galaxie Coffee loves coffee, which is why we do what we do. We serve the greater New York area with the finest coffees, teas and other beverages along with a full range of breakroom products. We will continue to do so as long as coffee remains legal in this part of the world – which should be forever. Contact us for more information about arranging coffee service for your office.

Good News about Coffee and Health

Good News about Coffee and HealthIn past blog posts, we have articulated some of the known health benefits of moderate coffee consumption. This month, we want to address one specific area of good news: coffee and other foods with caffeine do not lead to irregular cardiac rhythms as previously believed. You can now engage in moderate coffee consumption without worrying about arrhythmia.

Past studies have suggested that caffeine can cause irregular heart rhythm. Those studies caused doctors and other health professionals to warn against consuming coffee, chocolate, and other foods with significant volumes of caffeine. But a new study out of the University of California-San Francisco now says otherwise. The study is the largest ever to look at the supposed links between irregular cardiac rhythm and dietary habits.

According to lead researcher Dr. Gregory Marcus, previous recommendations to avoid foods that contain caffeine should be reconsidered by the medical community. In fact, Dr. Marcus and his fellow researchers believe that caffeine consumption might actually have positive health benefits that should be encouraged.

No Evidence of PVCs or PACs

Researchers conducted their study with a group of just under 1,400 subjects with an average age of 72. Regular caffeine consumption was reported by 60% of the subjects at the start of the study. Researchers then measured instances of premature ventricular contractions (PCVs) and premature atrial contractions (PACs) among their subjects, only to find that those who consume caffeine on a regular basis did not have a greater incidence of the contractions.

Both kinds of contractions are understood to cause the heart to beat more times than it normally would. Both are related to a long list of heart conditions including atrial fibrillation, stroke, coronary artery disease, and general heart failure.

So why the difference in the study results? The UCSF researchers say that the past studies we depended on for decades did not look at either PACs or PVCs in relation to irregular heart rhythms. That makes them flawed inasmuch as irregular heart rhythm generally begins as either PACs or PVCs.

Buttressing their claims are a significant number of observational studies that have found regular caffeine users have measurably lower rates of cardiovascular and coronary artery disease.

Everything in Moderation

We need to be careful with this good news about coffee and health. As always, everything needs to be done in moderation. Moderate coffee consumption can provide certain health benefits thanks to the caffeine it contains. But too much of a good thing can be counterproductive. So go ahead and enjoy two or three cups of good coffee every day. Just watch it on the cream and sugar, and don’t indulge yourself via multiple pots.

Here at Galaxie Coffee, we love coffee and everything that goes with it. That’s why we have been faithfully serving our customers in the greater New York area for as long as we have. We would be happy to provide your office with high-quality coffee service that includes a full line of beverages and equipment.