When you are sleepy and really need that kickstart, or tired and need a mid-day boost, we all crave that mug of hot coffee. Caffeine, the active ingredient in coffee can be found in chocolate, energy drinks, soft drinks, tea and coffee. But the healthiest of them perhaps are tea and coffee, from which coffee has a higher percentage of caffeine.
With over 90% of the adult US population drinking over 200mg of caffeine a day, we have to wonder about the caffeine benefits and risks. Is coffee bad for you? Caffeine is generally believed and proven to have healthy effects on adults if they remain within the recommended dose. Going beyond the recommended dose can cause negative consequences, ranging from uncomfortable caffeine side effects to more serious coffee health risks.
We brought together all the facts on how caffeine benefits the mind and body.
The most popular motivation behind consuming caffeine is to wake ourselves up in the morning, get our mind going when sluggish, and give us a mental boost when we feel tired and slowed down or just need to wake our brains up.
While others prefer to have hot coffee in the morning, most of teens nowadays choose to have a hard cold brew coffee with milk and additional flavoring.
The stimulant effects of caffeine work to energize the body too. Not only has caffeine shown its effects on mental alertness, but it also provides physical energy to do more work.
Interestingly enough, caffeine works as a factor in weight-loss, by boosting metabolism in the body.
Lowers Risk of Some Diseases
- Diabetes 2
Coffee has been linked to lower the risk of Diabetes 2.
Studies indicate a surprising trend of caffeine having possible protective effects from Parkinson’s disease in men.
- Alzheimer’s/ Dementia
On-going experimental studies have shown caffeine to reduce the risk of memory-related diseases like Alzheimer’s and Dementia, by improving brain function and strengthening memory.
The antioxidants in caffeine have shown to combat even cancer. Although the exact factors in caffeine responsible for fighting cancer are still being researched, however, the World Cancer Research has linked coffee to lower risks of cancer.
- Helps liver health
Caffeine has also been shown to lower the chances of liver damage (cirrhosis), with a study suggesting people with liver damage drink more coffee as an aid to recovery.
Caffeine contains small amounts of some essential nutrients like potassium, magnesium, and riboflavin, among others. While these nutrients may be found in small percentages, taking the average dosage of 2-4 cups of coffee a day, adds them up to a significant amount.
Several studies have also indicated the benefits of caffeine towards improving moods and reducing stress-causing hormones
Coffee is known for its high levels of antioxidants, amounting to the greatest form of antioxidant diet in the West. Antioxidants play a vital protective role in boosting immunity and preventing damage and diseases caused by free radicals in the human body.
The Bottom Line
Moderate consumption of caffeine is beneficial, while excess can lead to certain health risks. You can always have your coffee fix twice or thrice a day, but don’t neglect to toe the line and keep your sensitivity to caffeine in check.
Monitoring your caffeine intake will ensure you get all the benefits of your coffee while avoiding the unpleasant side effects. Are you a coffee lover? Which is your favorite caffeine drink?