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Coffee - the next health drink

Since I'm a heavy coffee drinker, I'm was quite happy to read the NY Times article that says coffee reduces the risk of diabetes, heart disease and cirrhosis of the liver.

And not your wimpy one cup a day ... we are talking major coffee here ... six cups a day ... my type of people ... which studies show may reduce the risk of diabetes by 35 percent.

Decaf works as well as regular since it is something called chlorogenic acid in coffee that impacts glucose levels.

Other antioxidants reduce inflamation reducing the risk of cardiovasular problems.

The NY Times writes "researchers found that a typical serving of coffee contains more antioxidants than typical servings of grape juice, blueberries, raspberries and oranges"

Wahoo!!! I think though I'll keep that glass of wine a day though just to get my grape benefits.

Of course, there are still the negative studies like one that says more than two cups decreases blood flow to the heart especially during exercise at high altitude ... no worry about that, the excercise part, for me.

Well, you know those scientic studies ... good this week, bad the next. However, I'm going to enjoy this one for a while.

However, as the NY Times article states, don't take up swilling coffee for the health benefits. It's just a nice side benefit for those of us who drink alot ... hopefully.

http://www.nytimes.com/2006/08/15/hea...

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  1. That's very good news. I can never understand people who proudly proclaim they have given up coffee as if it's some horrible vice on the level of cocaine.
    Let's see, it makes you feel perky in the morning, it tastes really good, and no one has ever really proved it's bad for you -- why do all the purists seem to think you have to give it up?

    1. I also noted the coffee article in NYT, and forwarded it to all my java hound friends in celebration. Since the 70s when George Howell brought his Coffee Connection to Hahvahd Squayah I've been a wicked coffee snob; broke my heart when he finally cashed out to Starbucks, but he did his bit. Maybe this is a good time to remind others who share my delightful addiction to check out a great web site, www.coffeegeek.com -- and now that I'm thinking of it, I think I'll go rev up the espresso machine!

      1. Thanks for the article. One accusation that drives me nuts is "coffee stunts your growth". It's wishful thinking from parents who are afraid of having short kids (speaking as a short parent).

        I do hear claims about caffeine and bone density, though.

        1. I saw that article too and have been trying to up my consumption. I never disliked coffee and coffee ice cream is a favorite but I never really got in the habit of daily coffee and when my DH switched to green tea he quit making coffee. So now, I have to remmeber to make it. I do have a programmable coffee maker and the other thing is that I am not a fan of hot drinks, so my coffee is iced. I got around to to makng a pot this AM, a blend of dark roast decaf and Community Chicory (full strength) and let it cool. I whizzed it in my blender with ice cubes and half and half this afternoon for an excellent pick me up. It cost pennies for that coffee frappe or smoothie or what ever the coffee vendors are charging upwards of $3+ for.

          1 Reply
          1. re: Candy

            "I have been trying to up my consumption", now, that is a truly refreshing statement, compared to all those people I hear from who are cutting back.

          2. I wonder whether/how they sorted out the effects of black coffee, on the one hand, from Frappucinos, on the other? The effect on blood glucose would seem to be rather different...

            1 Reply
            1. re: Jefferson

              Blood sugar from unsugared frappes or frappucinos would only marginally raise blood sugar limits. I prefer no sweetening of any kind.

            2. I don't drink coffee, but my fiance is quite the addict and I am trying to wean her off the dark mistress. She used this article to justify her continued coffee consumption. Not really a big deal, but to me, coffee, like cell phone usage, is one of those things where researchers seem to release contradictory findings every 6 months. All I know is that when you get headaches unless you get your fix (like what fiance does) then that's probably a sign to cut back. But of course that's the opinion of a non coffee drinker :-)

              1. I disagree that the findings are contradictory. I've been reading health articles for years and have never seen any conclusive evidence that it's bad for you, except perhaps for a small amount of people who have high blood pressure. It's true that it's rather addictive, but it's far less damaging than any other addictive substance. And you get headaches when you cut out sugar too, so does that mean no one should eat it?

                4 Replies
                1. re: Chowpatty

                  I don't know of anyone who's gotten headaches because they haven't eaten their daily intake of ben and jerrys or chocolate cherry cheesecake.

                  1. re: fascfoo

                    I think you have to be prone to hypoglycemia to get headaches from low blood sugar. Most other people just eat before it ever happens.

                  2. re: Chowpatty

                    I think it depends on the individual. While it may not be physically harmful, it can have negative effects. I used to be a huge coffee addict, and worked at a coffee bar. Eventually, I developed insomnia. Cutting out the coffee was the only thing that let me sleep again. Now I find that I'm hyper- sensitive to caffeine and even a little (say 30 mgs) can keep me from sleeping...so I avoid it.

                    1. re: sku

                      I, too, used to be a javaslinger... and the rule was that 31 seconds after the espresso was pulled, it was either in a cup, or dead. Well, we drank the dead ones, as well as the "changed-order" ones and the ones we pulled for ourselves. At one point I was probably drinking 20-25 shots a day.

                      Twelve years later, I can drink a double espresso with sugar, jitter for about five minutes, and be asleep five minutes after that.

                  3. Yes, but if you've ever done a low-carb diet where you truly cut out all sugar, including bread, pasta, etc., you will have a killer headache for several days that is equally intense as the coffee-withdrawal one.

                    2 Replies
                    1. re: Chowpatty

                      I never had that problem when doing induction. I live low carb pretty much all of the time except for special occasions.

                      1. re: Chowpatty

                        Maybe you went too low? Some people may have more difficulty switching to a "fat burning metabolism" than others. Also, the Zone people theorize that when you do switch to burning fat, some of the bad fats "released" from storage can wreak havoc on your body for a while. Of course, it isn't really possible to study these things well enough to know. Thankfully, it's easy to eat an apple and if that stops the headache, it's totally worth it.