My journey through the PROS and CONS of having coffee

I DO LOVE MY COFFEE…

I love the smell and I love the taste.

Well…it hasn’t always been like that. I can remember that when I was about 14 or 15 years old, my friends and myself were spending our Wednesday afternoons in cafes to catch up on….I don’t even know what we were catching up on as we were constantly together. It was a very sociable thing to do. We could spend hours and hours in the same place.We obviously needed to consume drinks or food. Soft drinks were quite expensive if regularly consumed. Expresso at the time were minus cost. So I really had to force myself  drinking those little caffeinated shots. But one after the other it became a very enjoyable  “drink” to have.

Now then…I still love my coffee. Working in a place selling wonderful tasty coffees, I cannot resist having one first thing in the morning  when I am starting my shift and another one at lunchtime. The thing is, this coffee is REALLY strong. The way I like it, concentrated americano style: black with no milk / no sugar. Although I have never been extreme in my intake of coffee, after a couple of weeks having two or three cups of coffee a day, I started to feel tense. tense in my throat, tense in my back. I started to feel anxious and didn’t seem to be able to control myself very well. I couldn’t think of what was provoking this very uncontrollable reaction through my body.

Then, I have suddenly made the link between the time I started at the bakery and my increasing amount of coffees through the day. As I said, I wasn’t drinking a lot but it felt as if the effect of coffee through the weeks accumulated through my body and my body was screaming out and loud to stop drinking it!

I LOVE C-O-F-F-E-E. It is my daily morning treat. I find it very difficult to giving up on it. It makes me feel sad. I have then made a conscious decision of not having any more than one a day. And so far…it is working. I don’t feel any tension, anxiety or excessive uncontrollable worries. I am feeling much better. Not only it give me buzz and joy, but It also give me a sense of making the world a better place by supporting Fair Trade and Organic coffees 🙂

I do believe that the frustration of NOT having A cup of coffee can be as unhealthy as drinking it excessively. I have made some research and wanted to enclose the pros and cons of drinking coffee…so You can make your mind up yourself.

The truth is that we are all different…so connecting to our own body and being aware of its signals is necessary before taking on any external source of information to make a judgement on what we SHOULD OR SHOULD’T DO. 

http://www.eatingwell.com/nutrition_health/nutrition_news_information/the_health_benefits_and_cons_of_coffee?page

Health Benefits of Coffee

+Brain Gains. Moderate coffee drinking—between 1 and 5 cups daily—may help reduce risk of dementia and Alzheimer’s disease, as well as Parkinson’s disease, studies suggest. How? Coffee’s antioxidants may prevent some damageto brain cells and boost the effects of neurotransmitters involved in cognitive function, say experts. ­Preliminary studies have noted that as coffee (or tea) intake rises, ­incidence of glioma, a form of brain cancer, tends to drop. Some ­researchers speculate that compounds in the brews could activate a DNA-repairing protein in cells—possibly preventing the DNA damage that can lead to cells becoming cancerous.

+Defeating Diabetes. Studies link frequent coffee consumption (4 cups per day or more) with a lowered risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Scientists suspect that antioxidant compounds in coffee—cholorogenic acid and quinides—may boost cells’ sensitivity to insulin, which helps regulate blood sugar. While most of the research didn’t assess whether the brews were caffeinated, decaf may be even better, since other studies have found that caffeine tends to blunt the insulin-sensitivity boost.

+Hearty Benefits. Some studies show that moderate coffee drinkers (1 to 3 cups/day) have lower rates of stroke than non-coffee-drinkers; coffee’s antioxidants may help quell inflammation’s damaging effects on arteries. Some researchers speculate that the compounds might boost activation of nitric oxide, a substance that widens blood vessels (lowering blood pressure). More java isn’t better: a 5-cup or more daily habit is associated with higher heart disease risks. Researchers ­believe excessive caffeine may sabotage the antioxidants’ effects.

+Liver Lover. Though the research is limited at best, it appears that the more coffee people drink, the lower their incidence of cirrhosis and other liver diseases. One analysis of nine studies found that every 2-cup increase in daily coffee intakewas associated with a 43 percent lower risk of liver cancer. Possible explanation: caffeine and antioxidant chlorogenic and caffeic acids in coffee might prevent liver inflammation and inhibit cancer cells.

Health Cons of Coffee

-Java Jones. If you’re sensitive to caffeine, it can cause irritability or anxiety in high doses (and what’s “high” varies from person to person). How? Chemically, caffeine looks a lot like adenosine, a “slow-down” brain chemical associated with sleep and relaxation of blood vessels. Caffeine binds toadenosine receptors on nerve cells, leaving no room for adenosine to get in—so nerve cell activity speeds up, blood vessels constrict—and you get a caffeine buzz (or irritable jitters).

Of course, if you caffeinate yourself daily, you’ll likely develop tolerance to its effects and the jitters will subside. But that also means that eventually you’ll need a regular caffeine fix just to reach your baseline level of alertness. And your body will adapt by producing more adenosine receptors, making you more sensitive to the effects of adenosine. So if you don’t have your daily cup, you’ll likely develop withdrawal symptoms like extreme fatigue and splitting headaches (caused by ­constricted blood vessels).

-A Sleep-Stealer. If you’re having trouble sleeping it might help to cut down on caffeinated coffee, or to drink it only early in the day. Generally it takes about 6 hours for the caffeine to clear your system, although it varies from person to person. The sleep-robbing effects may worsen as we age, too, a recent study suggests

-Cholesterol Caution. Boiled or unfiltered coffee (such as that made with a French press, or Turkish-style coffee) contains higher levels of cafestol, a compound that can increase bloodlevels of LDL (“bad”) cholesterol. Choose filtered methods instead, such as a drip coffee maker.

-Prudence for Pregnant and Nursing Women.The American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology says it’s safe for pregnant women to get a moderate amount of caffeine (no more than 200 mg, equivalent to 2 cups of coffee per day), but warns that it’s still not clear if higher intakes could increase risk of miscarriage. Since ­caffeine can pass into breast milk, nursing moms should cut down if their babies are restless or irritable.

The best advice that I can give to myself is “Enjoy one cup if it makes me feel good, slow down if it doesn’t :)”

With much Love,

Stephanie xxx

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This entry was published on June 13, 2012 at 9:21 pm and is filed under BALANCED BODY, BALANCED MIND. Bookmark the permalink. Follow any comments here with the RSS feed for this post.

One thought on “My journey through the PROS and CONS of having coffee

  1. I also do love my coffee! Great post.

    Cheers,
    Elizabeth

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