ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Can Coffee Can Be Healthy?

Updated on December 6, 2014

Update: While this article is mainly on the healthy aspects of coffee, there are some downside to coffee which I will mention at the bottom of the article.

Coffee can have many healthy benefits which includes having beneficial antioxidants and flavonoids. Coffee helps regulate insulin and decreases inflammation. It reduces the risk of developing Type 2 diabetes and dementia. And can decrease the risk of cardiovascular diseases and certain types of hormonal related cancers.

Although more of a drink rather than food, EatingWell.com has listed coffee in its article Bad Foods You Should Be Eating where "bad" is not really bad, but more of a bad reputation. But coffee may not be as bad as many people think. The negative is primarily due to its caffeine. And those who can not tolerate the caffeine or who are pregnant should limit coffee.

Many health experts have given the "okay" and "thumbs up" for coffee. The first chapter of the book Dr. Chopra Says:

"coffee may also offer substantial benefits, including protection against heart disease, Type 2 diabetes, liver cirrhosis, Parkinson’s disease, cavities, colon cancer, prostate cancer, and even suicide."

When asked whether exercise or coffee is better, he answers "run to Starbuck" [page 14].

At Starbucks, you should ask for "black house coffee". This is their least expensive and most healthy beverage besides plain water. Don't get the high sugar drinks such as the Latte or Frappuccino. And you should not be adding sugar to your coffee either. If coffee is too strong for you, you can add some milk provided that you do not have casein allergy and is not troubled with lactose intolerance.

Sugar is terrible for health and if you add that to your coffee, it will make coffee a less healthy beverage.


Studies on Coffee

The Beverage Guidance Panel consisting of six researchers was tasked to determine what are the best healthy beverages to drink. The answer they concluded is water followed by tea and coffee.[1]

Articles on Harvard School of Public Health says that "Up to three or four cups of coffee or tea a day appear to be fine."[1]

and that ...

"evidence is good that for people in general—outside of a few populations, such as pregnant women, or people who have trouble controlling their blood pressure or blood sugar—coffee is one of the good, healthy beverage choices."[2]

Coffee May Reduce Risk of Type 2 Diabetes

There is something in coffee (and it is not the caffeine) that helps reduce the risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Coffee contains minerals such as magnesium and chromium which increases insulin sensitivity making it easier for your body to move glucose into it's cells.

Several studies have indicated this ...

  • Study have found that moderate coffee consumption (either caffeinated or decaffeinated) may lower risk of type 2 diabetes in young and middle-age women.[reference]
  • WebMd says "Every Cup of Coffee Per Day Lowers Risk of Type 2 Diabetes by 7%" [reference]
  • ScienceDaily reports of UCLA study that found an inverse relationship between coffee consumption and risk of type 2 diabetes. That is more coffee is associated with lower risk of diabetes. [reference]

For diabetics however, the caffeine in coffee may increase blood sugar and make it more difficult to control glucose levels. See article why Coffee Reduces Risk of Developing Type 2 Diabetes, but bad for Diabetics.

Coffee Decreases Risk of CardioVascular Diseases

Since diabetes is a risk factor for cardiovascular disease and stroke, it makes sense that coffee decreases these risk factors since it decreases risk of diabetes.

A study of 130,000 people found that coffee drinkers (of 1 to 3 cups per day) are 20% less likely to be hospitalized for arrhythmias than nondrinkers.[3] Note however, that if you have serious heart arrhythmia condition, coffee can be dangerous with that condition.[reference book: Dr. Chopra Says]

Study of Japanese men and women found that caffeine consumption from coffee, green tea, black tea, and oolong tea consumption is associated with lower mortality rates due to cardiovascular disease.[5]

Coffee Reduce Risk of Dementia

Studies are showing that coffee drinkers have less risk of developing dementia, Parkinson's disease, and Alzheimer's disease. In these cases, the effect is probably due to the caffeine. Coffee is also strong antioxidant, and antioxidants may help with reducing risk of dementia.

A study of 1,400 people in Finland and Sweden followed for about 20 years found that serious coffee drinkers (3-5 cups a day) were 65% less likely to develop dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.[3]

CBS News reports of two mice studies that indicates coffee may lower Alzheimer's risk possibly due to reducing inflammation in the brain.

The two studies can be found in Journal of Alzheimer's Disease (Volume 17, Number 3, July 2009) titled ...

  • Caffeine Reverses Cognitive Impairment and Decreases Brain Amyloid-Beta levels in Aged Alzheimer's Disease Mice.
  • Caffeine Suppresses Amyloid-β Levels in Plasma and Brain of Alzheimer’s Disease Transgenic Mice

Read more about how coffee can reduce risk of Alzheimer's.

Coffee is Protective Against Certain Cancers

Coffee consumption is associated with a decrease risk of liver cancer and liver cirrhosis. A study shows coffee consumption associated with decrease risk of endometrial cancer (cancer of the lining of the uterus) possibly due to coffee's effect of lowering estrogen and insulin hormones.

Study found lower rates of breast cancer among woman who are coffee drinker. Coffee not only benefits woman. A study of men who drinks 6 or more cups of coffee a day is found to be associated with 20% lower rates of prostate cancer.[4]

Some negatives of coffee

Although a Harvard study consisting of 130,000 volunteers found that coffee does not have any serious negative health effects for healthy population,[2] coffee is not without its drawbacks.

The main problem with coffee is its caffeine, which needs to be detoxified by the liver and can hamper healthful sleep.

Coffee contains caffeine and which have been implicated with increase risk of miscarriage and lower-weight babies. Hence pregnant women should avoid caffeine intake. People with serious cardiac arrhythmias should also avoid. For diabetics, coffee may make increase blood sugar.

Coffee may increase blood pressure and worsen heartburn and irritable bowel syndrome. For some people, it may keep them up at night or increase frequency of urination.

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)