Well well well. The great Coffee debate. What can one say about this miracle drink. Some think copious amounts of it are healthy. Some say it causes cancer. I think it just tastes like crap. (Please don’t shoot me for that.)
Regardless, the question remains, is it God’s gift to man or the devil liquid form?
Smart people everywhere stand on opposite sides of the spectrum. But I’m here to set you straight.
Here’s the sinch, coffee is a tool. You can use a tool properly or improperly. Take a wrench for example, you can use it well and tighten some bolt or whatever, or you can bang someone over the head with it and give them a concussion. The latter isn’t useful, in fact it will probably get you arrested. . . but I digress.
The principle applies here with coffee. You can consume it in a way that will help your health, or hurt it.
Let me detail the Do’s and Don’ts for ya
Load your coffee down with cream and sugar
If it’s possible for you, the best way to drink coffee is black. When you put tons of sugar and cream in your coffee, you're basically diluting what is healthy in the drink such as the caffeine and antioxidants with fat.
Drink more than 4 cups a day
According to the FDA 400 mg of caffeine should be the limit. That’s 200 mg for pregnant women and 400 mg for everyone else. This is the equivalent of about 4 cups of coffee. Let me tell ya people, the side effects of too much coffee are not pleasant. When you drink too much coffee or caffeine you can experience anxiety, nervousness, uncontrollable jitters, shortness of breath, irritability, and even muscle tremors. Trust me on this one, if you’re tired just go to sleep. If you find yourself experiencing these symptoms however, I have a quick fix for you. Go on a short run real quick or do a strength training circuit. This gives your body a chance to expend all that extra energy that it’s dying to use.
Drink it right before you go to bed
This one is more common-sense than anything. Researchers at Michigan’s Henry Ford Hospital’s Sleep Disorders & Research Center and Wayne State College of Medicine analyzed the sleep-disruptive effects of caffeine consumption at different lengths of time before bedtime. They found that consuming it even 6 hours before bedtime was a detriment to the quality of sleep of the study participants. I’m like a grumpy bear when something disturbs my sleep, and I absolutely hate it if I can’t fall asleep when I want to. Don’t let an atrocity like that happen to you. Getting a good night sleep is essential to your health ( and your motivation levels to work out the next morning)
Now that I’ve scared you with the negative side of your favorite drink, let’s examine the many miraculous things it is capable of.
Yes yes, I know you were worried I was going to say coffee is evil but no; this amazing substance should always be incorporated into your diet and here is why.
- It’s loaded with caffeine, a substance that blocks certain inhibitory neurotransmitters in your brain, which stimulates it and improves your energy, reaction time, mood and countless other brain functions.
- Coffee will improve your workout. It’s caffeine levels increases the amount of adrenaline your body produces, this is the famous “fight or flight” hormone that makes your body ready for intense physical exertion. Try drinking a cup of strong black coffee a half hour before your workout and see your performance increase.
- It may lower your risk of Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease. Numerous studies have indicated that coffee drinkers can have a 20%-60% lower chance of contracting these diseases.
- Coffee can help you burn fat. Several studies indicate that coffee can increase one's metabolism by up to 10%. This in turn helps your body increase its fat-burning rate.
- It is the biggest source of antioxidants in the Western diet. Antioxidants are important because they prohibit the oxidation of disease- causing free radicals in the body. Antioxidants remove free radicals from the bloodstream leaving us healthier and less prone to sickness. Basically we have all the components here for a sick magic school bus episode.
So there you have it friends. Coffee is honestly the best, so don’t abuse it, just use it!