The Coffee Buzz

There is a great debate on whether or not your morning java is good for you. Some say that it can slash rates of Type 2 diabetes, Parkinson’s and dementia as well as reducing the chances of developing certain types of cancers and strokes. Coffee is very high in antioxidants (when freshly brewed) and contains minerals such as magnesium and chromium. Caffeine, as I’m sure you are very much aware, is a stimulant and promotes alertness and wakefulness. It can also increase information processing.

Unfortunately, caffeine can raise blood pressure and has been linked with an increased risk of cardiovascular disease. If you are prone to heartburn, coffee (both decaf and caffeinated) can exacerbate those symptoms. Coffee is also a mild diuretic, so if you aren’t passing on your cup of joe, make sure you are drinking more water throughout the day!

I used to drink a large cup of coffee daily, until I started having severe sleeping problems. Some weeks I was logging an average of about 4 hours of sleep. In my opinion, there is nothing more frustrating than NOT being able to sleep when you’re exhausted. I tend to think that people in general are way overmedicated and whenever a health issue occurs, I really feel the best place to start is with your DIET. The first and most obvious cut I had to make was caffeine. Addiction to caffeine is very real and there are withdrawal symptoms. I also missed the routine of getting into work and sipping on my nice, warm coffee. Or in the summer, I love nothing more than a nice big iced coffee. To ease the pain of this loss, I started by substituting black teas. My favorite was Chai. Black teas contain a little bit less caffeine than coffee. I loved a cup of Chai with steamed milk and a dash of vanilla with cinnamon sprinkled on top, or iced with just milk. From there, I transitioned into herbal teas with just a touch of stevia or agave to sweeten. After that, I just loaded up on water (I hate drinking water plain so I like to dress it up with wedges of lemon or frozen fruit).

I will have a cup of coffee on the weekends maybe twice a month (I love to add cinnamon or pumpkin spice to the grinds before brewing). I tend to think drinking a cup a day (I like my coffee with milk, no sugar) won’t do any damage, just make sure to watch what you’re adding to it (no double mochas with whip and caramel sauce on top!)

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