For both of us here at CVC coffee is a staple of our diet. Coffee signifies the start of the day and is equally useful and enjoyable. The major selling point of coffee is its mood enhancement effects, but with something that we consume every day it seemed like we should do deeper dive into how it impacts our health. Coffee seems to be one of those parts of life that people will either tell you that it is great for you, or that it is bad for you. In reality everyone’s health status is unique so let’s look at what the science says about how coffee changes our health.
Coffee has been shown to greatly help our liver’s health:
The liver is the heaviest internal organ and works day and night to keep our bodies functioning. Clearing out toxins, producing enzymes, and regulating our blood are just a few jobs of the liver so we need to make sure we are keeping ours healthy. One of the greatest health benefits of coffee is a hepatoprotective effect. Coffee consumption has been corelated with reduced liver cancer, reduced chronic liver disease, and even may slow the hepatitis C virus. While the exact mechanisms aren’t clearly known the research at NCBI is very clear on coffee’s positive impact on the liver.
Coffee drinkers have a lower rate of Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease:
When looking at something in our diet, like coffee, that contains a large amount of different chemical compounds it can be tough to determine what is beneficial and what is harmful. So, for incredibly complex disorders like Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease this becomes increasingly difficult. After examining research however, it was shown that there is a significant correlation between decreased rates of both of these neurological diseases in people who regularly drink coffee. A review in the archives of medical science examined this phenomenon specifically in Poland, because the nation added coffee to their food pyramid. The conclusion of that paper was that the correlation between coffee and decreased rates of neurodegenerative disorders is an added health benefit, especially when most people drink coffee for pleasure, not health status.
Daily Coffee Consumption Decreases the Risk of Chronic Kidney Disease:
Our kidneys are smaller organs that are constantly filtering our blood to keep us healthy. The ability of the kidneys is measured with a figure called glomerular filtration rate or GFR. A study published in 2018 compared the GFR change of people who drank coffee regularly, at different amounts against people who did not drink coffee. The study was conclusive that both levels of coffee drinkers showed a slower rate in decline of GFR associated with chronic kidney disease.
Coffee Consumption is Associated with Improvement in Cardiovascular Risk Factors:
Maintaining our cardiovascular health is one of the cornerstones of longevity. Diet and exercise are the key pillars to keep our heart healthy, but what role does coffee play? Daily coffee consumption has been shown to have an inverse relationship between not only heart attacks, but also congestive heart failure, stroke, and even other risk factors like diabetes and obesity. It is important to note that excess caffeine has been shown to increase anxiety and heart palpitations, but when consumed in moderate the benefits statistically yield positively on heart health.
Caffeine Aids in Hair Growth:
An aspect of health that many of us do not think about until it is a problem, especially men, is the health of our hair. Hair loss associated with testosterone is something than many men are far too familiar with. Approximately 50% of men will experience hair loss resulting from their male hormones by age 50. An investigative study compared the hair growth effects of caffeine and testosterone in men, and was published in 2007. It showed not only that caffeine would counteract the hair loss effects of testosterone, but also was shown to stimulate new follicle growth.
Negative Health Effects of Coffee:
After delving into many of the positive health effects of coffee it is prudent to acknowledge that there are some negative health changes associated with coffee. One being, that with caffeine consumption our body loses calcium. This means that caffeine consumption can be detrimental for people with osteoporosis. Another area is that coffee consumption during pregnancy has been shown to be associated with lower average birth rate. While it is our opinion that many of the health benefits out-weigh the health risks, it is important to examine these changes on a case-by-case basis.
When examining health changes in our bodies we have to get out of the mindset that something is either good or bad. In reality there are changes that might be more or less desirable for our unique health status. Us at CVC seek out coffee for its mood enhancement effects, and enjoy the positive health impacts on liver, brain, kidney, heart, and hair health, but understand that we need to be proactive with our bone and joint health due to changes from caffeine. In short, working with a trusted provider to determine how coffee should fit into your diet is always a good choice.