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Ten Useful Facts About Coffee
Fact # 1: There are only two type of coffee beans we drink: arabica and robusta.
The coffee we drink daily comes from two major species of coffee called Coffea arabica (arabica coffee) and Coffea canephora (robusta coffee).
Coffea arabica accounts for 75% percent of production around the world and we see it on the coffee packages as Arabica or 100% Arabica. Arabica is used to make the finest coffees and espressos in the world.
Robusta makes the other 20 to 25% of coffee on the planet. The caffeine level of this plant is higher than arabica. It is mostly used in blends and is never advertised on the package, being considered an inferior type of coffee because does not hold as much flavour as arabica.
Fact # 2: Ground coffee loses its flavor within 1 hour of after grinding.
If you like your coffee fresh, then brew it and drink it right after grinding it.
Coffee flavours and aromas are extremely volatile once the coffee bean has been broken. While green coffee lasts for years before going stale, roasted coffee stays fresh for a week, ground coffee for an hour and brewed coffee only minutes.
Fact # 3: Roasted whole beans coffee stays fresh about a week.
You only have one week to enjoy the taste of a fresh roasted coffee.
Two weeks into the roasting the coffee beans are still good but aromas disappear.
In three weeks, flavours are going away.
And finally, in four weeks, there is nothing left but stale coffee beans.
There is no container that can seal the delicate aromas and no canning method has been proven to do the job. The refrigerator doesn't help either, rather accelerate the process from because the moisture.
Fact # 4: You can freeze your coffee to preserve its flavours.
The coffee connoisseurs say that its ok to freeze coffee. Actually, they say that not only it is ok but it is an excellent way to preserve roasted coffee.
But there is a right way to do it.
Put the beans in a freezer bag and seal it tight. Place the bag in the freezer, in a far corner, away from the door to avoid the temperature change. Take out just as much as you need and thaw the beans before grinding.
Fact # 5: Coffee grown at low altitudes is gentle on your stomach.
If you get heartburns after a cup of coffee you may want to drink a low acid coffee. Some coffees have been specially treated to have a reduced level of acidity while others are naturally low acid.
The naturally low acid coffee are the ones grown at low altitudes. This means coffees from Brazil, India, Sumatra, Timor, Hawaii and other Pacific areas, and the majority of coffees from Caribbean archipelago
Fact # 6: Dark roasted coffee has less acid.
There are other ways to drink coffee and avoid the heartburns, without taking a daily pill. Besides the naturally low acid coffee mentioned above, there are man-made low acid coffees as well. These coffees are called “special mild coffees” and come mainly from Germany, where the technology of reducing the acid level has been developed. They are also hard to find.
Also, drinking a dark roasted coffee is supposed to help, if you don't mind the bitterness. The darker the roast, the lower the acid level. . Through the roasting, coffee beans lose not only their acidity but their flavours as well.
And if none of the above works, then you have to try a cold brewed coffee.
Click here for another article about low acid coffee.
Fact # 7: There’s more to coffee than caffeine
Some people cannot get up in the morning if they don’t drink their daily dose of coffee. They feel like the morning cup gets their energy level wherever it needs to be for a good social function. In other words, coffee wakes them up and keeps them from falling asleep. The chemical responsible for this condition is called caffeine, and it is abundant in coffee beans. The stronger the coffee and the higher the amount of coffee consumed , the more caffeine is ingested and the more energy for the drinker.
But caffeine is not all. There are other compounds in coffee that makes this fruit valuable. Recent researches have been revealed that coffee is full of antioxidants that can fight the free radicals responsible for cell damages. Also, recent products containing green coffee extracts, claimed to be very beneficial for our health.
Fact # 8: Coffee grounds make a very good fertilizer.
After you brew your coffee, what do you do with the coffee grounds in your filter drip machine or your french press? You can dispose it in the garbage or you can put it to good use.
It has been known for a while that adding used coffee grounds to the potting soil acts as a natural fertilizer and lots of coffee consumers are using the leftovers in their drip machine to enhance the life of their plants. Because the coffee grounds are full of wonderful antioxidants and even after they have been soaked in a drip, boiled in a pot or pressurized in an espresso machine, they still hold a great amount of antioxidants.
Not only they are used as a fertilizer, as one company does it as a very profitable business, but scientists have concluded that they should be used to make natural supplements for human consumption. More studies on this idea have to be yet done but here is an article for further reading in The Journal of Agriculture and Food Chemistry.
Fact # 9: Coffee has caffeine but no calories.
Consumed by itself coffee has no calories. The calories content comes from added sugars, cream and/or syrups.
So, your morning cup of coffee (about 8 oz) has about 100 mg caffeine but 0 calories. Add a teaspoon of sugar and you got 15 calories. But go to a coffee shop and get a Mocha Frappuccino, topped with whipped cream and you are just about to have a fourth of your daily calories intake, or about 500 of them.
Fact # 10: Coffee is actually good for you.
There are so many news this days about the benefits of drinking coffee. It looks like every few month a group of scientists (!) release the results of a new study, saying that coffee is good for this and that. So far, there is a quite long list of illnesses and conditions that they say coffee may be beneficial:
Type 2 diabetes
and...., the last study: does not increase mortality, to finish in a positive note.