Coffee is an inseparable part of many people’s daily routines – myself included. We drink coffee on a daily basis out of habit and need. A morning started without a good cup of coffee could potentially ruin the rest of the day. Besides, coffee gives you just the right amount of energy boost for the rest of the day.
While coffee on its own is very good for the body, drinking coffee with artificial sweeteners and other additions is not always healthy. That is why in this article, we are going to discuss some healthy coffee habits you can get into and the health benefits they bring. Let’s grab a cup of espresso and get started, shall we?
Coffee: The Healthy Way
According to a recent study, the coffee beverages served at popular coffee stores actually contain more calories than you think. A standard Iced Caramel Macchiato could contain 250 calories and up to 10 grams of fat. Caffè Mocha hits close to 300 calories and more fat than most coffees. The amount of sugar these drinks contain is even higher. A cup of Frappuccino can have more than 50 grams of sugar, which is 25g more than the recommended daily sugar intake.
This is certainly not the healthy way to drink coffee. The amount of artificial sweeteners and other ingredients that go into a cup of coffee at popular coffee stores is too high for the drinks to be beneficial for the body. Also, the sizes of the servings are too big.
One of the first things you can do to make your coffee better is by limiting the use of artificial sweeteners and other ingredients. You can add sugar or chocolate to your coffee but using syrups to add flavor will only multiply the number of calories you consume. Try using brown sugar for a unique flavor and the right amount of sweetness. You can also choose certain roasts or coffee beans that are known for their natural sweetness.
Improving Coffee with Natural Ingredients
Now that we have artificial sweeteners out of our coffees, it is time to explore ways to improve your coffee using natural ingredients. Thanks to today’s affordable espresso machines and the wide selection of coffee you can brew yourself, fine-tuning the kind of coffee you drink is a lot easier than you think. You can, for example, pick up a good espresso machine for your kitchen from this website and start brewing your own coffee in the morning.
When you brew your own coffee, you have a plethora of ingredients to add. For extra flavor, cinnamon is a good place to start. Cinnamon contains a lot of antioxidants, which are good for your body. The combination of coffee and cinnamon is known to be effective in controlling blood pressure and lowering your blood sugar level. Cinnamon works really well with coffee too.
Another great ingredient you can add to your black coffee is butter, especially grass-fed butter. Grass-fed butter contains more Omega-3 fatty acid and vitamins. When added to coffee, grass-fed butter gives the drink that smooth and sweet aroma, all while adding the health benefits you can get from drinking coffee. It’s not a secret that a cup of coffee with grass-fed butter in the morning is an excellent pick-me-up and will power you for the day.
Chocolate is another fantastic partner for coffee. Don’t settle for chocolate syrup though; you want unsweetened cocoa to get the most health benefits without substantially increasing the calorie count of your coffee. This combination will even lower your risk of heart disease and cancer.
More Health Benefits
Brewing your own coffee is a great way to maximize the health benefits you can get from every cup. As mentioned before, the modern espresso machines we have today certainly make brewing the perfect cup every morning a lot easier. Even manual brewing is now an art that many people enjoy as a hobby.
Coffee on its own also brings many health benefits to the table. Those of you struggling to lose weight, for instance, can turn to coffee for its magnesium and potassium. Both nutrients help the body utilize insulin more effectively, allowing the body to regulate blood sugar levels better. As a result, the body stops craving snacks and sugary drinks. Caffeine, on the other hand, helps break down body fat when you exercise.
There are multiple studies linking regular coffee drinking with lower risks of cancer, heart disease, and stroke. Drinking two to four cups of coffee every day can reduce the risk of prostate cancer by as much as 20%. It is also true that coffee helps keep the brain active and healthy while lowering the risk of Parkinson’s disease by up to 25%.
We often link coffee with mood. Have you ever felt cranky in the morning before that first cup of coffee? As it turns out, coffee does affect our brain in a positive way. It helps increase the production of neurotransmitters, including dopamine and serotonin. It is an instant mood-booster and it can help fight depression in more ways than one.
Sticking with coffee’s impacts on the brain, regular consumption of coffee helps you stay focused and active for longer. A shot of espresso is often all that is needed to increase the production of dopamine and noradrenaline. The sensation of suddenly being able to focus and think (or work) more effectively is not an illusion; it is a real benefit of coffee.
While coffee brings a lot of health benefits to the table, drinking too much coffee is not recommended. On average, you can have up to four cups of coffee throughout the day; drinking more than that or drinking several cups, one after the other, will make you feel jittery and on edge; that’s the caffeine affecting your body too much.
Ideally, you want to keep your daily caffeine intake beneath 400 milligrams. Stay within the recommended consumption level, however, and there is a long list of health benefits you will get to enjoy from drinking coffee, or rather healthy cups of coffee, on a regular basis.