Coffee For Your Health

By Hilda Maria Sigurdardottir  

Many of us rely on coffee to get us going in the mornings, wake us up in the afternoons, and prepare us for that special business meeting. Go ahead, have a cup of coffee. It's much healthier than you may be thinking right now.

In a study in Italy, it was proven that that brewed coffee contains many antioxidants and consumption of antioxidant-rich brewed coffee may inhibit diseases caused by oxidative damages. When compared to other caffeine containing beverages like tea and cocoa, coffee proved to be the best in helping to prevent disease.

Caffeine in Coffee - Good or Bad?

The caffeine in coffee has often been a source of concern for many. Most people have problems sleeping when they drink coffee right before bedtime. Others will drink coffee to give them that boost of energy caffeine provides. Some even feel their heart rate increase if they drink too much coffee.

Did you know there are also benefits to the caffeine found in coffee? Coffee intake (due to the caffeine) was associated with a significantly lower risk for Alzheimer's Disease, independently of other possible confounding variables. These results, with future prospective studies, may have a major impact on the prevention of Alzheimer's disease.

Another benefit of drinking coffee has been studied in China. Their research clinically proved the caffeine in coffee helps to prevent Parkinson's disease. Many of us have been led to believe that caffeine is bad for us. True enough, large quantities may hurt us, but the evidence is strong for the benefits it provides.

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Coffee - Healthy Tonic for the Liver?


Studies completed in Japan indicated that people who drink more than a cup of coffee a day are less likely to develop liver cancer than those who do not, Japanese researchers say. Coffee also helped lower the risk of cirrhosis of the liver. Chlorogenic acid present in coffee beans has been proven in studies to also reduce the risk of liver cancer.

Harvard Medical School completed a study in 2004 that strongly suggest coffee has preventative qualities for Type 2 diabetes and insulin resistance. The authors found an inverse association between coffee intake and type 2 diabetes after adjustment for age, body mass index, and other risk factors. Total caffeine intake from coffee and other sources was associated with a statistically significantly lower risk for diabetes in both men and women. These data suggest that long-term coffee consumption is associated with a statistically significantly lower risk for type 2 diabetes.

Coffee and Physical Fitness


The amounts of water, carbohydrate and salt that athletes are advised to consume during exercise are based upon their effectiveness in preventing both fatigue as well as illness due to hyperthermia, dehydration or hyper hydration. The old issues concerning coffee and caffeine were that it acts as a diuretic, thus causing more fluid loss during activity. Studies have caused researchers to re think this point. These studies suggest that consuming caffeine does not have this effect and can even have beneficial effects on keeping the body fit.
Caffeine does not improve maximal oxygen capacity directly, but could permit the athlete to train at a greater power output and/or to train longer. It has also been shown to increase speed and/or power output in simulated race conditions. These effects have been found in activities that last as little as 60 seconds or as long as 2 hours. There is less information about the effects of caffeine on strength; however, recent work suggests no effect on maximal ability, but enhanced endurance or resistance to fatigue. There is no evidence that caffeine ingestion before exercise leads to dehydration, ion imbalance, or any other adverse effects.


What about the negative effects of coffee?

Coffee is enjoyed as a drink by millions of people worldwide. It contains caffeine, which is a mild stimulant, and in many people coffee enhances alertness, concentration and performance. Although it contains a wide variety of substances, it is generally accepted that caffeine is responsible for many of coffee's physiological effects. Because caffeine influences the central nervous system in a number of ways and because a small number of people may be particularly sensitive to these effects, some people have attributed coffee to all sorts of health problems.

Caffeine is not recognized as a drug of abuse and there is no evidence for caffeine dependence. Some particularly sensitive people may suffer mild symptoms of withdrawal after sudden abstention from coffee drinking. A 150ml cup of instant coffee contains about 60mg caffeine, filtered coffee slightly more; for those who like coffee but are sensitive to caffeine, the decaffeinated beverage contains only 3mg per cup.

Coffee drinking can help asthma sufferers by improving ventilator function.

There is no evidence that coffee drinking is a risk for the development of cancer. For several types of cancer there is disagreement between studies but again, other aspects of lifestyle may be implicated. There is even a strong suggestion that coffee may have a protective effect against colon cancer. A possible explanation may lie in the many antioxidant substances present in coffee and which are currently subjects of active research.


In some sensitive individuals, ingestion of coffee after a period of abstinence may cause a temporary rise in blood pressure but there is no hypertensive effect in the long term. Coffee made by the Scandinavian method of boiling or by the cafetiere method may cause mild elevation of plasma cholesterol concentration in some people, but instant, filter coffee, and liquid coffee extract have no such effects.

Overall there is no influence of coffee drinking on heart disease risk.


There is no sound scientific evidence that modest consumption of coffee has any effects on outcomes of pregnancy or on the wellbeing of the child. Bone health is not affected by coffee drinking. Adverse effects in some published studies have been attributed to aspects of lifestyle that are often shared by coffee drinkers, such as smoking and inactivity. Coffee drinking can help asthma sufferers by improving ventilator function.

There is no reason for people who are prone to ulcers to avoid coffee.

Research continues and must be subjected to critical scrutiny and re-evaluation. At the present time, there is no reason to forego the pleasurable experience of moderate coffee drinking for health reasons. Go ahead... Have a cup of delicious coffee!

10 Teas That Heal

By Ron King  

Drinking tea -- research shows it to be a healthy activity, because tea contains antioxidants that help fight cancer and even slow the aging process. Vitamin C, found in some teas, helps fight illnesses and colds. Some teas contain polyphones, which strengthen teeth by reducing plaque and also help aid digestion by increasing the flow of digestive juices in the stomach.

Tea, in short, has many healing properties. Here are 10 natural healing tea therapies.

1. Black Tea
Black tea blends are the most popular in the Western world. After the leaves are picked, they go through full fermentation that makes the leaves darken to almost black. Black tea can be flowery, fruity, and spicy or even have a nutty taste. Black tea, known for lowering the risk of stroke, contains antioxidants, which help reduce clotting of the arteries. Black Tea varieties include: Black Tea, Rose Black Tea, English Breakfast Black Tea, and Earl Grey Black Tea.

2. Chamomile Tea
Considered a floral tea, Chamomile has a very aromatic, fruity flavor and is a member of the daisy family. This tea helps with toothaches, insomnia, and muscle cramps, plus it reduces the swelling of skin irritations.

3. Green Tea
Green tea with its huge nutritional benefits is the most popular tea in Asia. Varieties include: Jasmine Green Tea, Jasmine Dragon Pearl, Green Peony Tea and Roasted Japanese Green Tea. After green tea is picked, it is dried using hot air. The leaves are then pan-fried, but not fermented, which helps preserve the high nutrient and vitamin content. Vitamin C in green tea helps boost the immune system and promotes overall good health. Fluoride, found naturally in green tea, strengthens bones and prevents dental decay.

4. Oolong Tea
Oolong tea, known for aiding indigestion and lowering cholesterol levels, is made from large, mature trees. The leaves are left to wither after being picked, which removes moisture. Semi-fermentation happens after the leaves are left in the shade. Oolong tea has a a full-bodied taste, a pleasant aftertaste, and a sweet fruity aroma. Some varieties are: Jasmine Oolong Tea, Ice Peak Oolong Tea, Hairy Crab Oolong Tea and WUYI Rock Tea.

5. Red Tea
Grown in Africa, Red Tea is rich in antioxidants. This kind of tea has been proven to help boost the immune system, and is also caffeine-free. Varieties of Red Tea include: Florida Orange Red Tea, Organic Cape Red Tea, Organic Green Red Tea and Organic Green Summer Red Tea.

6. Rosebud Tea
A floral tea, Rosebud tea is made using rosebuds from a rose bush. The tea has a very sweet, floral aroma and a light, sweet taste; it is often brewed with other types of tea. Essential oils in this tea help aid circulation.

7. White Tea
Made by using very young tea leaves that are still covered in down, white tea leaves are not fermented. Instead, they are steamed and dried in the sun. Because of the lack of fermentation, white tea contains a high concentration of chemical compounds, known to help fight cancer. The brewed tea has a silver-white appearance because of the downy leaves. It has a sweet aroma and fresh flavor. White tea varieties include: Silver Needle, White Peony, and Jasmine Silver Needle.

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8. Paraguay Mate
Very popular in South America, Paraguay Mate is brewed with spices and sipped with a straw from a gourd. The tea is used to aid many health problems, including depression, digestion, and boosting energy levels.

9. Wild Holy Tea
Wild Holy Tea has a bitter taste. It is used for medicinal purposes: to detoxify the body, aid in blood circulation and improve digestion. With regular consumption, Wild Holy Tea has been shown to help control blood pressure and obesity.

10. Milk Tea
The most popular tea in India and Sri Lanka is an Indian black tea mixed with spices. It's called Milk tea because it is usually brewed with milk and spices, such as cinnamon, cardamom, and ginger. Milk tea added with other types of tea, such as green tea, contributes to overall health.