Posts Tagged ‘Coffee Health’

Caffeine May Reduce Tinnitus, Ringing in Ears

Tuesday, August 19th, 2014

Drinking coffee may be good for your hearing, a new study suggests. Women who consumed higher amounts of caffeine were found to be less likely to have tinnitus, which is a steady ringing or buzzing in the ears.

The research included more than 65,000 American women aged 30-44, who did not have tinnitus in 1991 and were followed for 18 years. Women who consumed less than 150 mg of caffeine per day (about 1.5 cups of coffee) were 15% more likely to develop tinnitus than those who consumed 450-600 mg daily. Most of the caffeine consumed came from coffee, according to the study published in the August issue of The American Journal of Medicine.

While the exact reason why caffeine seems to have this effect is unknown, it is known that it stimulates the central nervous system and has had a direct effect on the inner ears of animals in previous studies.

What is Chlorogenic Acid?

Wednesday, August 6th, 2014

Chlorogenic Acid (CLA) has been found to be one of the main protective factors in a variety of recent studies examining the health benefits of coffee - from liver to eye health. CLA is one of the powerful antioxidants found in coffee beans, and is also found in strawberries, blueberries, pineapple, and sunflower seeds.

Chlorogenic acid has been shown to inhibit an enzyme that promotes the formation of glucose (sugar) in the liver. Hence, chlorogenic acid in coffee may be responsible, in part, for the reduction of glycemic disorders like diabetes.

Various studies have also indicated chlorogenic acid slows the absorption of fat from food intake and also activates metabolism of extra fat. Chlorogenic acid is more potent in green coffee beans before they are roasted, but is also found in brewed coffee.

Caffeine and Exercise

Thursday, June 26th, 2014

With summer in full swing, many people are more active than they were in the winter months - with bike rides, runs, or other activities outside. Did you know that coffee can help you get more out of your workouts? Here are 5 ways it can help:

Improved Circulation

Recent research studied the effects of coffee on circulation in people who were not regular coffee drinkers. Participants in the study drank either caffeinated or decaf coffee, and then scientists gauged finger blood flow, to see how well their smaller blood vessels were working. Those who drank the caffeine had a 30% increase in blood flow over a 75 minute period, compared to those who had decaf. Better circulation can mean a better workout - muscles need oxygen!

Less Pain

Scientists at the University of Illinois found that consuming the equivalent in caffeine of 2-3 cups of coffee before 30 minutes of high-intensity exercise reduced perceived muscle pain. Caffeine may then help you push a little bit harder during workouts, resulting in better muscle strength and endurance.

Better Memory

A study published from Johns Hopkins University found that caffeine enhances memory up to 24 hours after it’s consumed.  In this study, two groups (those who drank caffeine and those who did not) were asked to remember images over a 24 hour span, and the caffeinated group scored better. This can help during workouts where remembering exercises or routines is necessary.

Muscle Preservation

In a study with animals, scientists found that caffeine helped offset the loss of muscle strength that occurs with aging. These protective effects were seen in the diaphragm, the muscle used for breathing, and in skeletal muscles.  These results indicate that caffeine may help preserve overall fitness and reduce the risk of age-related injuries!

More Muscle Fuel

A little caffeine post-exercise may be beneficial, particularly for endurance athletes who perform day after day. Compared to consuming carbohydrates alone, a caffeine/carb combo resulted in a 66% increase in muscle glycogen four hours after exercise. Glycogen is a form of carbohydrate that gets stored in muscle, and serves as a vital “piggy bank” during exercise. Greater reserves means you’re able to exercise harder and longer.

While caffeine appears to offer several exercise benefits, keep in mind it’s important to drink plenty of water as well!

3 Ways to Get the Most “Health” Out of Your Coffee

Wednesday, April 23rd, 2014

cup

While coffee is the #1 source of antioxidants in the US diet and has been known to help prevent many diseases, there are a few other factors that can give you an even greater benefit:

1.       The Roast: The antioxidant effects of coffee are related to compounds called chlorogenic acids. Roasting green coffee beans turns these acids into antioxidants, but if you keep roasting them, they can break down again. So, lighter roasts tend to have higher antioxidant contents than darker ones. Also, choosing a roast that is low in acid (like Healthwise!) is easier on your digestive system, and helps lock in more of the natural vitamins and minerals of the coffee.

2.       The Storage: Roasted coffee beans contain free radicals, which increase the longer beans are exposed to air. As free radical levels rise, some antioxidants in the beans are spent fighting to stabilize them, which reduces the antioxidant level that is consumed. So, store your beans in an airtight container like this one, and don’t grind them until you’re ready to brew (if using whole beans).

3.       The Cup: How do you usually drink your coffee? Black coffee is extremely nutritious, but anything you add is diminishing to its benefits. Adding sugar and creamers add unwanted calories, and a new study from Croatia suggests that milk can reduce the antioxidant levels. Artificial sweeteners, while often calorie-free, can be laced with chemicals. If you’re looking for some added flavor, try sprinkling on some ground cinnamon.

Coffee May Help with Liver Disease

Monday, March 24th, 2014

Evidence is showing that coffee may prevent and mitigate liver disease, even among people who may not realize they have the disease. Several studies spanning the past 15-20 years have shown that coffee helps prevent liver inflammation, which is often tied to Hepatitis C, cirrhosis, and liver cancer. It’s unclear whether caffeine or other ingredients of coffee are responsible for the benefits, but one study in Japan showed that green tea failed to have the same effects.

Obesity is a leading cause of nonalcoholic fatty liver disease, which many Americans have but don’t realize, up to 10-15% of the population. Usually liver diseases don’t show symptoms until the liver actually fails, though.  While coffee alone can’t treat liver disease, consuming a moderate daily amount of unsweetened coffee is a reasonable therapy option. Read more here!

Coffee Helping Research for Parkinson’s Disease

Wednesday, March 19th, 2014

For new medications for the treatment of Parkinson’s to Dementia, scientists are looking to coffee! Caffeine, the world’s most widely used drug, can do more than just wake people up. Various studies have linked caffeine to improvements in memory and protection against the destruction of brain cells. One study found that people who drank more than two cups of coffee per day had a 40% lower risk of developing Parkinson’s Disease.

Some drug companies have been designing drugs to replicate these benefits, but the challenge is to go beyond to achieve a more powerful effect without side effects like jitters or headaches.  At least five large studies have shown that consuming more caffeine can help reduce the risk of developing Parkinson’s Disease. In one rat study, chronic consumption of caffeine prevented the loss of nerve cells.

Parkinson’s is a disease that progressively impairs body movement, coordination, and speech, and drug developers are focusing on the way caffeine targets an area called the basal ganglia, which plays a key role in movement.  The goal is to improve movement in Parkinson’s patients who are already taking medication to control tremors and stiffness. While the approach has been difficult to get right, it is promising!

Read more here.

Essential Nutrients in Coffee

Thursday, March 6th, 2014

Coffee is more than just a caffeinated beverage! Many of the nutrients in coffee beans do actually make it into the final drink. A 16 oz. mug of coffee contains:

  • Riboflavin (Vitamin B2): 11% of the RDA.
  • Pantothenic Acid (Vitamin B5): 6% of the RDA.
  • Manganese and Potassium: 3% of the RDA.
  • Magnesium and Niacin (B3): 2% of the RDA.

HealthWise Coffee also has higher than average mineral contents of Calcium, Potassium, Iron, and Zinc due to our TechnoRoasting process.  HealthWise also has dozens of trace minerals in its coffees.  These micro-nutrients are essential for promoting normal growth and development.  Some examples include Boron, which promotes normal growth, and maintains proper levels of steroid hormones; Molybdenum, which promotes normal growth and reproductive capability; Selenium, which can protect against Mercury poisoning, and mitigate against muscle pain, weakness and heart disease.

5 Ways to Make Your Coffee Healthier

Wednesday, March 5th, 2014

Coffee is naturally a healthy beverage, and is the leading provider of antioxidants in the US diet. Here are some tips to get the most benefit out of your coffee:

1. Don’t Load Your Coffee with Sugar

Sugar, in addition to adding unnecessary calories to your drink, is also bad for teeth and has been linked to diseases like Diabetes. If you must have some sugar in your coffee, Stevia is a better option.

2. Avoid Low-Fat and Artificial Creamers

Commercial low-fat and artificial creamers (and sweeteners) tend to be highly processed and may contain unnatural, harmful ingredients. Some of these include high fructose corn syrup and trans fats.  If you want to add a creamer, try a full-fat cream, and preferably organic. Studies have shown that high-fat dairy products are actually associated with a reduced risk of obesity.

3. Add Some Cocoa

Cocoa is loaded with antioxidants and is associated with a variety of health benefits, including a lower risk of heart disease. Try adding a little cocoa to your cup for added sweetness.

4. Add Some Cinnamon

Cinnamon mixes very well with the flavor of coffee, and has been shown to lower blood glucose levels, cholesterol, and triglycerides in diabetics. Try it out!

5. No Caffeine Late in the Day

Drinking coffee late in the day can interfere with our sleep, since it’s a stimulant and gives us a jolt of energy. Poor sleep can cause several problems, so if you can, choose Swiss Water Decaf. Depending on your sensitivity, 2-3 pm is a good guideline for caffeine cutoff

What is Swiss Water Decaf?

Tuesday, January 28th, 2014

mountains

Caffeine is a naturally-occurring substance that occurs in more than sixty plant species worldwide. Many food and beverage products made from these plants contain varying amounts of caffeine.  Coffee is, not surprisingly, is one of them.  One typical cup of coffee contains 120-180 mg of caffeine, while a decaf cup of coffee contains between 2 and 6 mg.  So, even though decaf coffee is much lower in caffeine, it does still contain small amounts.

In the US, coffee must have 97% of caffeine removed to be considered decaf. However, in Canada and the rest of the international community, that number is higher at 99.9% caffeine-free as the recognized standard.

There are several reasons why people may choose to drink decaffeinated coffee, but did you know there are varying processes for how the caffeine is removed? Many processes actually use chemical solvents like ethyl acetate or methylene chloride to strip caffeine molecules from the coffee bean. Fortunately, there is an option that is 100% chemical-free and Certified Organic: the SWISS WATER® Process. This process removes 99.9% of caffeine, without compromising bean quality or taste.  All beans undergo regular audits to verify the caffeine has actually been removed to this level.

The SWISS WATER® Process is also eco-friendly, and uses pristine water from the mountains in British Colombia, Canada, to gently remove caffeine from coffee beans.  The way to tell if your decaf coffee has been decaffeinated using this process is to look for the SWISS WATER® seal on its packaging.

So, in a nutshell, the SWISS WATER® process is a chemical-free, highly effective, and eco-friendly process for decaffeinating coffee.  HealthWise Decaf Coffee is decaffeinated using this process and is the only low-acid coffee decaffeinated without the use of chemicals!

Coffee Consumption and Dehydration

Sunday, January 12th, 2014

hydration

Despite what you may think, a new study shows that moderate coffee consumption does not cause people to become dehydrated. This research was conducted to the Institute for Scientific Information on Coffee.

The study involved having 50 men drink four mugs of black coffee or four mugs of water each day for three days. After a 10 day “wash out” period, the men swapped beverages and tried the other.  University of Birmingham School of Sport and Exercise Sciences researchers analyzed the hydration status of the participants after both the water and coffee drinking periods by looking at their total body water and body mass. There were no significant differences between either group, and there were also no differences in urine volume or concentration.

Researchers conducted the study to evaluate the persistent myth that coffee causes dehydration because caffeine can act as a diuretic, and that past research had been inconclusive. The Mayo Clinic has pointed out in the past that normal consumption of caffeinated drinks can actually contribute to daily fluid requirements!