It’s not like you need me to tell you how amazing that first coffee of a morning is. The smell of the coffee beans, the warmth of your cup and then that first sip! It’s like bliss! But there are a whole heap of reasons, other than how good it feels, why your morning coffee is good for you.
So the next time someone asks you ‘do you think you really need that coffee?’ arm yourself with this list of reasons why.
1 – Coffee Is Full Of Antioxidants
So, we hear this term a lot ‘full of antioxidants’. But not many people actually understand what an ‘antioxidant’ does or why we need them. In a nutshell, the body contains free radicals which can occur as a natural part of metabolism or in response to events in our body, such as infection. These can cause harm and damage to our body and antioxidants are used to neutralise them (sounds like a bit of a war going on in your cells right?).
Antioxidants also help reduce inflammation, a condition that we are becoming more and more aware as being linked to conditions such as arthritis, gut health and even cancer.
Coffee is one of the highest sources of antioxidants available, more than green tea and cacao. And it contains unique antioxidants not found anywhere else. Sounds like a pretty good reason to pour another cup to me!
2 – Decreased Risk of Type 2 Diabetes
When it comes to diabetes, there are a few types. Type 1 diabetes is also known as juvenile diabetes and has an early onset and is a condition that is not preventable and gestational diabetes is a form of diabetes in pregnant women. But it’s type 2 diabetes (diabetes that is a result of lifestyle choices such as diet) that is on the rise, and it’s something I see regularly in my job as a Paramedic.
Studies have shown however, that drinking coffee can decrease your risk of type 2 diabetes by around 9% for each daily cup of coffee. And it’s not just the caffeine as decaf also reduced the risk by around 6% for each daily cup.
Keep in mind, that while it seems like drinking 10 cups of coffee a day will reduce your risk of type 2 diabetes by 90%, it may present other health risks by consuming in such large quantities. So stick to your one or two cups a day.
3 – Can Help Reduce Depression And Make You Happier
Depression is a serious condition that affects many people in many different ways. From mild depression through to severe, it is something we need to be aware of and need to speak more about.
A Harvard study has shown that drinking four or more cups of coffee can reduce the risk of depression in women by 20%. When we are talking about a condition that plays a huge risk factor in women taking their own lives, a reduction of 20% risk is huge!
Caffeine also stimulates dopamine, the ‘feel good’ neurotransmitter associated with euphoria such as the feeling we get when we drink our first cup of coffee for the day. (Also associated with addition, which too explains a lot).
4 – It Can Help You Burn Fat
When it comes to natural substances to help you burn fat, caffeine is one of the few that has actually been proven to work. That’s one of the reasons why so many of the ‘fat burning supplements’ you see have caffeine as an ingredient.
It is said to boost your metabolic rate and increase your bodies ability to burn fat, especially in those who aren’t regular coffee drinkers (sorry…).
While your daily cup of coffee isn’t going to replace your gym work out, it surely makes you feel better about having your morning coffee! Plus the ‘upper’ effect it has may just be what helps you get through your gym routine and work that bit harder! An all round win if you ask me.
5 – Let’s Not Forget The Social Aspect
While it’s easy to look at all of the above and argue that yes, there are some great reasons why your morning cup of coffee is good for you and the health benefits do speak volumes, it’s also important to acknowledge that coffee has a fantastic social benefit.
When was the last time you said to a friend ‘hey, want to catch up for a cup of water?’ Uh, no.
While coffee itself doesn’t cause the interaction between people, it does provide something for us to ‘catch up’ over.
It can be an excuse to catch up with a friend we haven’t seen in a while.
It can be the comfort we need when consoling a friend, handing over a cup of coffee and listening to their troubles.
It can be the empowering accessory, walking into a meeting with a coffee cup in hand.
It can be the regular get together at the local cafe and the understanding ‘I’ve got your back’ that you need as a new mum.
Whatever coffee is for you, it’s good to know that there are health benefits (when used in moderation) and you don’t need to feel guilty about how good that morning coffee makes you feel.