Coffee, the most popular drink in Dutch households. Avid coffee drinkers can't get enough? Did you know that in the Netherlands we drink about 150 liters of coffee per person per year!
People are also purchasing more and more beautiful machines for their home to enjoy freshly roasted coffee beans there as well.
It is clear that we all love it so much, but how healthy is coffee really? Can you just keep drinking it unlimited or do you sometimes have to keep an eye on your coffee intake?
Coffee can be very good for your health, but be careful.
Opinions are divided and one study praises this magical drink and its positive effect on our health and the other warns against drinking coffee.
But is it good for your health or not? I am therefore going to explain to you the positive effects of coffee on your health, but also dive deeper into the risks that we should keep an eye on.
Coffee and your health
Content of this article:
Health benefits of coffee
Coffee is naturally a drink with no calories, no fat and no sugar. Unless you completely fill your coffee with whipped cream, milk & caramel of course ;-).
This is, of course, already a huge health benefit if you think a healthy lifestyle is important. In addition, it gives you a good focus and a huge boost to your energy level.
In fact, many of us depend on our daily cup of coffee to wake up and start our day on the right foot.
In addition to the fact that coffee is super low in calories and a natural energy drink, there are many more health benefits of coffee to mention.
A study by Healthline ( 1 ) identifies the following health benefits that make us as coffee lovers very happy!
- Lower risk of type 2 diabetes ( 2 )
May promote brain health. While different studies show conflicting results, a number of studies suggest that coffee helps protect the brain against neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer's ( 3 ) and Parkinson's disease ( 4 )
Helps with weight loss. Several researchers have devoted their research to this. For example, increased coffee consumption has been associated with a decrease in body fat ( 5 ).
May lower the risk of depression. One study has shown that every cup of coffee reduces the risk of depression by 8% ( 6 ).
May protect against liver disorders. For example, one study has shown that drinking more than two cups of coffee per day is linked to a lower risk of liver cancer and other liver diseases ( 7 ).
Can improve heart condition. Drinking three to five cups of coffee a day can lead to a 15% lower risk of heart disease. ( 8 )
Coffee can make you live longer. Due to its many health benefits, drinking coffee could increase your life expectancy ( 9 )
- Coffee can improve athletic performance. For example, drinking coffee before a workout has been shown to increase endurance and performance ( 10 ).
Related : 4 reasons why drinking coffee is healthy
Healthy nutrients in coffee
As mentioned earlier, coffee is low in calories and free of fats and sugars. In addition, a cup of coffee contains many antioxidant vitamins and minerals.
For example, when you drink a mug of coffee (250 ml) you already get 25% of your daily requirement of vitamin B2.
In addition to vitamins, it contains minerals such as potassium, phosphorus and magnesium that have a positive effect on your health.
Less healthy nutrients in coffee
There are also substances in coffee that are theoretically less good for your health. However, research has not yet shown that the amounts of these substances you ingest via coffee actually have a major impact on your health.
The Nutrition Center also reports that with the amount of coffee we drink on average in the Netherlands, it is very unlikely that these substances will actually cause damage to our health.
Yet well worth knowing what these substances are and what they do to you.
Acrylamide is a substance that is created when you roast coffee beans.
Cafestol is a substance that occurs in brewed coffee. This substance increases the bad cholesterol in the blood, the so-called LDL.
These effects are mainly negative for people who already have high cholesterol or who are extra sensitive to it.
The amount of cafestol in your cup of coffee depends entirely on the brewing method you have chosen for your coffee. The simple conclusion is that when you drink (with paper) filtered coffee.
As with the Chemex, Aeropress or Hario v60, all the cafestol remains in the paper filter.
Do you want to avoid negatively affecting your cholesterol by drinking coffee? Then preferably make your coffee with the above brewing methods.
Also read: The effect of coffee on your cholesterol
Despite the risks of acrylamide and cafestol, you can continue to drink coffee safely.
However, if you are a risk group or if you suffer from elevated cholesterol, then preferably make your coffee using a paper-filtered brewing method.
Coffee and Sleep
I personally think this is really the worst news and the least pleasant side effect of coffee. When I drink really good coffee I can't get enough of this.
But if I drink too much coffee, I sleep so badly. Really not normal. But what exactly? I found out that caffeine produces the hormone adrenaline.
Adrenaline is known to give you energy. But of course you can't use this energy at all when you try to fall asleep.
Fortunately, if you drink coffee daily, this effect is somewhat less than if you are not used to drinking coffee. So keep drinking coffee daily, at least you'll sleep a bit ;-).
Coffee is good for your health. It contains numerous nutrients that have a positive effect on our health. In addition, it cheers you up, gives you energy and makes you happy.
If you have (too) high cholesterol, make sure that you make your coffee via a filter method in order to stop the Cafestol.
And oh yes, if you also think sleeping is important, don't drink too many cups of coffee just before you go to bed, this can sometimes work against you. Or just drink a nice decaf in the evening.