A true coffeeholic wouldn’t know how to start a day without the usual strong cup of black. Often blamed as an unhealthy addiction, of late, research has proved that coffee does indeed have some health benefits. Amongst these are coffee’s positive effects for people suffering from type 2 diabetes and also heart diseases and heart problems – but how true is this? Coffee is often credited with possible side effects and comes tagged along with a few cautions too. We unearth some facts and find out if coffee is good for your health or not.
First, the good news: Caffeine aids stimulation of the production of adrenaline and cortisone. Essentialy, it doubles up your body’s fight-or-flight reaction. Unholy as it may sound, decaf (coffee from which caffeine has been separated) is said to contain double the health benefits of coffee such as decreasing cardiovascular diseases, cancer and type 2 diabetes risks.
Another great coffee benefit is that it doesn’t add to your calorie intake till the time you don’t add extra servings of sugar in it, or cream. 5 ounce of coffee contains just 6 calories and a teaspoon of sugar is likely to add 23 to 27 calories. So, if you’re piling on the pounds, don’t blame the coffee, blame the sugar you take with it. Another coffee plus point is its positive effect on people with low blood pressure as it raises blood pressure levels instantly.
Now for some bad news: It is seen that drinking coffee in excess can lead to a spike in antioxidants in the body. Excessive coffee intake can also lead to heartburn and worsen existing digestive problems. And this applies to both - regular and decaf. In some extreme cases, unfit drinkers can experience lose bowel movements with excessive coffee intake.
Excessive consumption of coffee can lead to a condition called ‘coffee jitters’. This is a condition where one is compulsively drinking large amounts of caffeine. In some extreme cases, it can also lead to withdrawal symptoms leading to much anxiety and changes in sleep patterns. In the end it comes back to moderate consumption and portion control. Lastly, caffeine is recognised as a mild diuretic and if you’re accustomed to 5-6 cup of coffee a day, chances are you’re making frequent visits to the washrooms. In the long run, the acidity in coffee can lead to mild heartburn. We say – drink coffee, but keep it under control.
*Image courtesy: © Thinkstock photos/ Getty Images
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