Ah… Coffee. Our favorite brew, our favorite topic.
From that first, freshly brewed sip in the morning, getting the day off to a good start, to that afternoon refill, when the rich aromas help you push through for just a little longer. If you’re anything like us, coffee is a part of your everyday life – and an important one.
But at Peak State, we’re not just serious about our beans – we also care a lot about health. Our bodies will carry us through our entire lives, and taking care of them is important.
So, how does coffee fit into your health? Is coffee healthy to drink, and what exactly are the benefits? Today, we’re digging into exactly how coffee can support your body, so you can live a long and healthy life.
Intrigued? Let’s dig in.
Antioxidants in Coffee – Health Benefits of Coffee Beans
To understand why coffee is healthy for us, let’s have a closer look at the coffee bean. After all, what makes coffee healthy?
Now, coffee beans may be small, but they are actually made up of more than a thousand different compounds. Some are acids, bringing that complex, rich flavor that we all know and love. There’s of course caffeine, which boosts our energy levels. And then there are antioxidants – and these play an important role in our health.
See, our bodies are constantly under attack from something called free radicals – and in the long run, they can cause so-called oxidative stress. Over time, oxidative stress breaks down cells in our bodies, and can damage important molecules such as proteins and DNA.
This damage can increase the risk of various diseases – as well as cause wrinkles and other signs of aging. And the older we get, the harder it gets for our bodies to defend themselves against free radicals.
That’s where antioxidants come in.
Antioxidants are found in different foods, and help to fight free radicals in our bodies. Essentially, they heal and disarm them – which makes them vital for a healthy body.
Some antioxidants found in coffee are rare to find in other foods, or hard to find in such high concentrations. Hydrocinnamic acid, for example, is brilliant at disarming free radicals, and polyphenols and chlorogenic acid can combat a number of common diseases.
And in most countries, including the US, coffee is actually the number one source of antioxidants in our diets.
Let us repeat that in case you missed it: Americans get more antioxidants from coffee than anything else!
So, now that we’re clear on why it’s so healthy – what are some other health benefits of drinking coffee?
The Proven Health Benefits of Coffee
Now, while drinking coffee can never guarantee that you’ll stay healthy ‘til your last breath, there are actually a lot of concrete, science-backed health benefits to drinking coffee. And we won’t keep you waiting any longer – here are nine of the biggest ones:
1. Coffee Supports Brain Health
A lot of people wonder, does coffee help brain function? And yes – it turns out that coffee is brilliant at supporting your brain, and may even help protect you against certain diseases. For example, it’s been linked to a lower risk of both Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease.
One study also found that regular coffee drinking actually slowed the progression of Parkinson’s over time, and besides – a daily cup of joe can lower the risk of dementia and cognitive decline. And that’s before people put lion’s mane in it.
Pretty amazing, right?
2. May Lower Risk of Certain Cancers
Some people worry that drinking too much coffee will lead to cancer – but actually, the facts point to the opposite.
There have been countless studies made to see if there is a connection between coffee and cancer, and most of them found that drinking coffee actually lowers your chances of getting cancer.
In particular, coffee is associated with a lower chance of liver cancer – but risk of ovarian, thyroid, endometrial, colon, and certain skin cancers can be lowered by coffee drinking, too.
3. Protects Against Liver Conditions
Does coffee help liver function? Interestingly, yes – there’s a strong connection between coffee intake and a healthy, happy liver. Coffee can help maintain the right amount of enzymes in the liver, helping to support its vital functions and protect it against disease.
4. Coffee Helps with Weight Loss
All these beneficial antioxidants in coffee also boost our gut health and metabolism. And did you know that our guts actually control about 70% of our immune systems?
Not only that, but coffee can alter how the body stores fat, which can help with weight management – studies made on both women and men found that more coffee in their everyday lives led to a lower body fat percentage.
Besides – those who drink coffee are also about 17% more likely to get their daily recommended exercise, which can help with weight management too.
5. May Lower Risk of Type II Diabetes
Coffee has a unique ability to preserve the beta cells in our pancreas. What, you ask? Well, in simpler terms, these are responsible for producing insulin, which keeps our blood sugar at healthy levels. (Of course, this depends on whether you put sweetener in your cup, or prefer it unadulterated like us…)
And as you probably know, when insulin stops being produced as it should, it can cause Diabetes Type II – but luckily, coffee has been linked to a lower risk of developing the nasty condition.
6. Boosts our Energy & Enhances Athletic Performance
Ah… Caffeine, caffeine. The thing that springs us out of bed in the morning.
Most coffee drinkers are well acquainted with that energy boost some java can bring in our darkest moments. And it’s been proven time and time again – caffeine is a brilliant energy booster, getting us up in the morning and getting us through that afternoon slump.
But it also enhances athletic performance. Curious to know more about caffeine and all of its benefits? Check out this blog post where we dive deep into caffeine’s effect on the body!
7. May Lower Risk of Depression
There’s a strong connection between coffee drinking and a lower risk of depression. Caffeine is a stimulant, and actually helps boost the production of both dopamine and serotonin – and they lift your mood. It almost works like a mild anti-depressant – in moderate amounts!
One study even showed that with each cup of coffee per day, the risk of depression sunk by another 8%.
Studies have been made on both women and men, in large groups and with different circumstances. And although they vary slightly, the overall results all seem to point to the same thing – coffee helps lower the risk of depression.
8. Coffee Supports Heart Health
Did you know that coffee, in moderation, can help support a healthy heart? Drinking coffee has been linked to a lower risk of heart failure, heart disease, and even a lower chance of stroke – pretty fantastic, if you ask us.
But keep in mind that coffee may affect your blood pressure. If yours is either high or low, you may need to limit how much you drink in a day. Always consult your physician.
9. Coffee Increases Longevity
Wanna live forever?
Well, coffee can’t quite do that – but it sure can help you live a little longer.
In fact, most studies show that coffee drinkers have a better chance of avoiding premature death, of all causes related to body function – regardless of factors like age and weight. This is mainly due to its plethora of health benefits, like those mentioned above, that work together for an overall healthier body.
But maybe just a little bit of the credit comes from enjoying a delicious brew on a daily basis. After all, you know what they say – joy extends your life.
Negative Effects of Coffee Drinking
But of course, every coin has two sides. And while coffee’s positive effects shine like freshly polished silver… as with everything, there are a few things to keep in mind with coffee.
Is Coffee Bad for Your Teeth?
Most avid coffee drinkers have asked themselves this at one point or another. And the truth is, more acidic coffees may turn your teeth slightly yellow over time, both due to the fact that acidity weakens enamel, and that the tannins found in coffee can stain.
But tannins are also found in both wine and tea, among others – not just in coffee. If you’re worried about coffee staining your teeth, though, we’d recommend using toothpaste that strengthens the enamel, as that might help. Additionally, look for low acid shade-grown coffees.
Another thing to consider is the quality of the coffee you’re drinking. For example, if your coffee beans are grown with chemicals, traces often make it into the final cup. It’s pretty self-explanatory that chemicals and pesticides are bad for your health – among other things, they can cause hormonal disturbances, infertility, and increase the free radicals in your body.
For example, some people’s skin take a hit when they drink too much coffee – but there’s nothing in the coffee itself that’s been proven to have a bad effect on your skin. In fact, coffee can be a great stimulant for both hair and skin growth and is often used in beauty products.
But if the coffee you’re drinking is grown with chemicals, your skin may be reacting to those. If you want to learn more about the benefits of organic coffee, and why it’s a better choice for your health, we wrote a whole post about it a while back – check it out.
Apart from these effects, some individuals can be more sensitive to coffee than others, needing to limit their intake for various reasons:
Sensitive to Caffeine
Some people are more sensitive to caffeine than others and might struggle to sleep at night if they drink too much java during the day. If this sounds like you, it may be worth experimenting with cut-off times and darker blends.
If you have a sensitive stomach, you might react to the acids in coffee – for some, this can turn quite painful. Luckily, there are coffees with lower acid levels, and some other tricks to try.
Certain Health Conditions
Some health conditions might also want to proceed with caution around coffee – these include people with high or low blood pressure, people with a lot of anxiety, and pregnant women. Always consult your health care professional.
How Many Cups of Coffee Is Healthy per Day?
How much coffee should you drink per day, then? Most of the studies in this article, where they saw real benefits from drinking coffee, measured effects in people drinking at least one cup of coffee per day – some up to four.
And indeed, the general guidelines say that up to about 400mg of caffeine per day – which comes out to between 3-5 normal-sized cups – can be part of a perfectly healthy diet.
But these are general guidelines, and that won’t be true for everyone. Saying how much coffee is too much is difficult, since each body is different. So a better guideline might be to say – experiment.
Coffee should always make you feel good. So if it doesn’t, well – adjust.
Are you one of those who can’t sleep at night, or get stomach aches after that last cup? Consider changing your coffee blend, and pulling back a bit (we have tricks for this). At the end of the day, listen to what your body is telling you and you’ll find the right balance for you.
Peak State’s Organic Mushroom Coffee Comes with Extra Health Benefits
At Peak State, we’re all about delicious coffee that supports your best, healthiest self. That’s why all our beans are organic, Fair Trade, and shade-grown, for maximum flavor and zero harmful chemicals. Better for you, and better for the planet.
But not only that – to maximize the potential in your morning brew, all our blends are also infused with organic functional mushrooms, packed with even more antioxidants to support your health.
Immunity Boost is our Medium roast from Guatemala, loved for its delicious notes of dark chocolate and sweet grape. Made from 100% Arabica beans, it’s botanically infused with Turkey Tail, Reishi, Chaga, Cordyceps, and Lion’s Mane mushrooms. In other words? It’s packed with antioxidants designed to give your immune system a powerful boost.
Brain Sustain is our Light roast from Ethiopia Yirgacheffe, boasting fresh notes of lemon and sweet citrus. Made from 100% Arabica beans grown at high altitude, this blend is infused with Lion’s Mane and Cordyceps mushrooms, specifically chosen to boost your energy and sharpen your focus – the natural way.
Psst… Wondering what functional mushrooms are? Check out this post to read all about them!