Most of us drink coffee to help us wake up in the mornings and stay alert throughout the day, but you may not realize the numerous health benefits of drinking black coffee. The caffeinated beverage may help manage symptoms or even prevent multiple health problems.
The health benefits of drinking black coffee include: preventing Alzheimer’s disease, reducing cancer and cirrhosis. Black coffee is also an excellent source of antioxidants and contains high levels of caffeine, magnesium, and vitamin b2. It can improve your mood, manage obesity, and prevent Parkinson’s disease.
Coffee is excellent for your health, but clearly, there are better ways to drink the caffeinated brew than others, so let’s discuss that. Let’s also discuss the best times to drink coffee to benefit your health.
Does Black Coffee Give You More Energy?
Thanks to caffeine, coffee can give you a buzz and make you feel more energized. Many drinks contain caffeine. However, some are best avoided as the sugar content surpasses other benefits.
Caffeine is a mild stimulant that speeds up and enhances messages between your brain and body. You can generally feel the effects of caffeine within 5 to 30 minutes of consumption, and the results can last up to 12 hours.
Any physical effect you feel can depend on certain factors such as metabolism, caffeine tolerance, and body mass.
For example, if you rarely drink caffeinated beverages, you will be more sensitive to the stimulant than someone who regularly drinks it.
For healthy adults who consume a balanced diet and engage in regular physical activity, 400mg of caffeine is considered safe – this is about 2 to 3 espresso shots or five teaspoons of instant coffee throughout the day.
Ensure to avoid sugar and syrup when drinking your brew to receive the full health benefits of black coffee.
The time of day you consume coffee matters for an energy boost. It’s best to drink the beverage after a cortisol peak in the morning that would be from 9 to 11.30 AM. In the afternoon, that would be between 1 and 5 PM.
These periods between cortisol boosts are when the caffeine high will be most productive. As a result, you will maintain alertness and prevent crashing between peaks.
You can drink a coffee after 6 PM to help avoid another crash, but that can bring on other problems.
Does Coffee Increase Physical Performance?
Caffeine can prolong and improve exercise performance. Specifically, doses between 3 to 13 mg of caffeine per kilogram of bodyweight have been demonstrated to enhance exercise performance.
In addition, caffeine’s stimulating reaction on the central nervous system can reduce feeling fatigued, lower levels of pain, and exertion perception.
Caffeine improves mental sharpness and focus, and it can even enhance some technical skills during and after strenuous exercise.
Additionally, caffeine can enhance the body’s ability to use its fat stores as fuel, which can significantly increase your endurance when needed.
Caffeine can inhibit adenosine receptors in the brain, leading to higher noradrenaline and dopamine levels. This results in all the previously mentioned performance-boosting advantages.
What Nutrients Is Coffee High In?
One cup (240 g) of brewed black coffee without any cream or sugar provides 2.4 calories, 0g of carbohydrates, 0.3g of protein, and 0g of fat. Coffee is a rich source of magnesium and potassium. Consider the following nutritional information provided by the USDA:
- Calories: 2.4
- Carbohydrates: 0g
- Fat: 0g
- Sodium: 4.8mg
- Fiber: 0g
- Protein: 0.3g
- Sugar: 0g
- Magnesium: 7.2mg
- Potassium: 118mg
Ordinary black coffee contains small amounts of micronutrients, vitamins, and minerals. For example, one serving contains 7.2mg magnesium, 118mg potassium, 0.1mg of manganese, 7.1mg of phosphorus, 4.7mcg of folate, 4.8mg sodium, and 6.2mg of choline.
What Are The Health Benefits Of Drinking Black Coffee?
As we have already established, coffee can give you more energy and help you feel more energized. In addition, caffeine has excellent performance-boosting benefits on the body. However, it can also lower your risk for several conditions, including the following:
1. Alzheimer’s Disease And Dementia
Caffeine is well known for its short-term energizing effects on the central nervous system. However, the long-term impacts are less well-known.
Alzheimer’s disease and dementia are growing public health problems in aging populations, and medical treatment is coming up short.
Understandably, the reputed protective effects of caffeine against dementia and Alzheimer’s are of great interest.
Caffeine naturally improves cognitive abilities, and according to recent studies from Cardiovascular Risk Factors Aging and Dementia or CAIDE, their findings reveal coffee’s positive effects against cognitive decline, AD/dementia.
The study showed that drinking three to five cups a day at midlife was linked to a decreased risk of AD/dementia by about 65% at late-life. These results open up possibilities for preventing or delaying the onset of AD/ Dementia.
Researchers have been examining the association between coffee and cancer for decades. However, there are still many unknowns.
In 2016, the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) tried to assess whether drinking coffee could cause cancer, and they could not conclude that coffee is carcinogenic.
Recently, the coffee-cancer link was on the news again. A California court ruling issued a warning related to a chemical in the coffee roasting process called acrylamide, which has led to questions being raised among consumers.
That warning aside, numerous studies reveal that drinking coffee is linked to a reduced risk of dying from all causes of death.
For example, in 2016, (IARC) the International Agency for Research on Cancer Monographs Programme discovered that drinking coffee doesn’t cause pancreatic, prostate, and female breast cancer.
Still, it may reduce liver and uterine endometrium cancers. Unfortunately, there is a lack of concrete evidence for other cancer types.
Other recent studies reveal that coffee might lower the risk of numerous types of cancer, including head and neck, breast, liver, and colorectal cancer.
Hundreds of biologically active compounds are found in roast coffee, including caffeine, lignans, flavonoids, and other polyphenols. These have been shown to:
- Increase energy expenditure
- Regulate genes involved with DNA repair
- Prevent cellular damage
- Inhibit metastasis
- Contain anti-inflammatory properties
- Lower insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes are linked to a greater risk of liver, breast, colorectal, and endometrial cancer.
Consuming more coffee may help lower the kind of liver damage typically associated with overindulging in alcohol and food.
Researchers studied data from nine published studies involving more than 430,000 participants. They discovered that consuming two extra cups of coffee per day was associated with a 44% reduced risk of developing liver cirrhosis.
Cirrhosis can be fatal, and there is no known cure. However, it appears that coffee consumption may reduce the likelihood of cirrhosis.
Dr. Oliver Kennedy from Southampton University in the United Kingdom and his colleagues conducted analyzed average coffee consumption across previous studies to determine if adding two extra cups may influence the odds of liver disease. The studies involved 1,990 patients with cirrhosis.
Eight out of the nine studies revealed that increased coffee consumption by two cups per day was linked with a significant reduction of cirrhosis.
In addition, all but one study showed the risk of cirrhosis continued declining as daily cups of coffee increased.
Researchers approximated that one cup per day was linked to a 22% lower risk of cirrhosis than no coffee consumption. Two cups lowered the risk by 42%; it declined 57% for three cups and 65% for four cups.
One study uncovered a stronger link between drinking coffee and reduced cirrhosis risk using filtered coffee than boiled coffee.
The studies accounted for alcohol consumption and not other risk factors such as diabetes and obesity, leaving some unresolved questions.
While coffee contains antioxidant and anti-inflammatory compounds, drinking a few cups a day alone cannot mitigate the systemic damage due to obesity, excessive alcohol consumption, or living a sedentary life.
4. Mental Health
Scientific studies into the connection between caffeine and depression reveal that caffeine can reduce the onset of depression, and other studies suggest it could reduce the incidence of suicide.
An analysis from 2016 reviewed 11 observational studies occurring in China between 1980 and 2015. It revealed that caffeine contributed to a significant reduction in an individual’s risk of depression.
A study from 2019 found that drinking one to four cups of coffee a day lowered the risk of suicide ideation in women. However, it didn’t affect suicide ideation in men.
Coffee contains ferulic acid, caffeic acid, and chlorogenic acid. These acids can potentially reduce the inflammation of nerve cells that occur in the brains of people with depression.
One of the advantages of black coffee consumption is that it can help you lose weight. While caffeine alone won’t make you slim, it will boost your weight-loss efforts and help prevent weight gain.
More definitive research is required on the caffeine and weight loss connection. However, there are some theories about how caffeine consumption might affect weight, including:
- CALORIE BURNING. Caffeine can increase energy use even during your resting. This activates thermogenesis while your body generates heat and energy during digestion.
- APPETITE SUPPRESSION. Caffeine can reduce hunger and your craving for food for a brief period.
Drinking coffee before a workout is recommended. Most research suggests that it’s best to drink coffee around 45 to 60 minutes before exercise so the caffeine can get absorbed into your bloodstream and reach its optimum effectiveness.
Although you don’t need caffeine before a good workout, consuming it before exercising can provide you with additional energy and help you reach your performance goals.
Since the average cup of coffee contains approximately 100mg of caffeine, consuming 1 to 2 cups 45 to 60 minutes before exercise should provide you with enough caffeine to bolster your performance.
5. Parkinson’s Disease
Parkinson’s disease is the second most prevailing neurodegenerative disorder affecting around 1% of the population over 60. PD is considered a motor system disease and can be diagnosed by a group of cardinal motor signs.
These include (rest tremor, rigidity, bradykinesia) that result from the death of dopaminergic neurons in the midbrain.
Current studies examining the epidemiological, animal, and clinical results reveal that caffeine contains antiparkinsonian properties.
Caffeine may confer neuroprotection against dopamine neuron degeneration. Caffeine can enhance the onset and development of PD and help manage non-motor symptoms of the disease, which would otherwise not improve with current dopaminergic drugs.
Caffeine can be a promising therapeutic tool in treating Parkinson’s, and it is the first compound to recover motor and non-motor symptoms of PD with its neuroprotective capabilities.
There is numerous research available suggesting that coffee consumption can lower the risk of stroke. For example, in 2018, a review of 18 studies showed that moderate coffee consumption had a protective effect against stroke.
Additionally, a large-scale study involving over 83,000 female participants, followed over 24 years, showed a compelling decrease in stroke risk in individuals who drank coffee regularly.
Lastly, a study involving over 80,000 Japanese adults showed that people who consumed one cup of coffee per day, at minimum, had a 20% reduced risk of stroke compared to those who rarely drank it.
Can Coffee Be Bad For Your Health?
Certain groups should avoid drinking coffee, not reducing their caffeine consumption, such as pregnant women and breastfeeding mothers. Overconsumption of caffeine can cause anxiety in people with panic disorders.
People with hypertension should avoid drinking coffee as caffeine can result in short-term yet significant blood pressure spikes.
Since hypertension is the main cause of stroke, anything that harms your blood pressure can significantly advance your risk of stroke.
It’s worth noting that experts suggest brewing your coffee with a paper filter, as unfiltered coffee is linked to higher early death rates. It’s also best not to add cream or sugar.
While some people should avoid caffeine, drinking fresh, filtered black coffee has numerous health benefits. Not only can your cup of coffee energize you, enhance physical performance, and burn fat, it can reduce your risk of multiple conditions.
In addition, your daily cup of joe might even boost longevity. So, don’t hesitate to pour yourself a cup or more throughout your day.
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