National Coffee Day: How Coffee Benefits Your Brain and Body
By Sara Butler
I love coffee. In fact, I love it so much that I look forward to waking up each day just so I can have a steaming cup of joe. Coffee is so universally loved that there are poems, songs, and information health blogs about it. Coffee has even been given its own national day of celebration, Sept. 29.
In observation of coffee’s contributions to society and pick-me-up effects, we here at The Joint want to share with you all the ways responsible coffee consumption can benefit your health. So, sit back, relax with your favorite brew, and discover all the ways that coffee is good for you.
It’s Great for Brain Health
Most people don’t think of coffee as a healthy beverage, but there are a few ways in which coffee is great for the health of your brain. A study out of Johns Hopkins University found that the amount of caffeine found in two cups of coffee can help to boost memory by about 10 percent. It’s thought that caffeine may help your brain to boost the production of chemicals that it uses to store memories.
Of course, coffee also makes your brain more alert, improves decision making, sharpens your attention span, and improves your focus. There’s research that also links caffeine consumption to lower rates of age-related brain diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease and dementia.
It Can Aid in Fat Burning and Weight Loss
If you’re on the lookout for things that can help you burn fat and maintain a healthy weight -- and you’re a coffee drinker -- then you’re on the right track!
Some research suggests that the caffeine in coffee helps to jumpstart your metabolism in the morning to help your body burn fat. Studies have found that for up to three hours after a morning cup of java, study participants’ base metabolic rate was higher than those who didn’t have coffee in the morning.
Let’s also not forget that coffee gives you an energy boost -- an energy boost that just might make your daily workout that much more effective and motivate you to go the extra mile. Combine that with the fact that caffeine acts in most people as an appetite suppressant and that morning cup of coffee just seems so much sweeter.
It Reduces the Risk of Developing Type 2 Diabetes
Coffee contains more than just caffeine. Researchers have linked coffee drinking with a lowered risk of type 2 diabetes for quite some time, but now they may finally understand why.
Your morning cup of coffee, both caffeinated and decaffeinated, is full of antioxidants such as chlorogenic acid and magnesium. These ingredients improve the body’s sensitivity to insulin, helping it to utilize glucose as fuel for cells while reducing your risk of diabetes.
It’s a Rich Source of Antioxidants
Speaking of antioxidants, coffee is the primary source of protective disease-fighting antioxidants in the American diet. Coffee contains several antioxidants, but it’s richest in a group of compounds called flavonoids. These compounds have been found to possess antiviral, anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and anti-tumor properties. Antioxidants protect the cells in your body from damage and disease -- so drink up!
Remember, it’s the coffee that’s good for you -- not the flavorings or added sugar and fats that are found in most coffees and creamers. So, feel free to drink up for your health, but make sure you’re keeping your morning cuppa as healthy as possible.
Happy National Coffee Day!
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