Health Benefits of Caffeine
There is plenty of anecdotal evidence that caffeine can be beneficial to health.
However, these have not been completely substantiated. Some of the benefits suggested are.
- High caffeine content keeps the brain active
- High caffeine content boosts your energy~
- High caffeine content improves performance & endurance and
- Coffee with high coffee content is rich in antioxidants ~~.
All the above have been subjected to short- and long-term studies and for every positive spin on them there is a negative response.
A 2020 study of amateur cyclists~ found that coffee improved performance by an average of 1.7%. This may not sound like much, but it’s a big deal for even moderately competitive athletes.
Coffee filtered through paper (in an Aeropress or a V60, say) may be healthier than coffee made with a metal filter (in a cafetière, for example) or no filter at all.
A study published in 2020 that followed more than 500,000 healthy coffee drinkers for about two decades found that those who drank filtered coffee (as opposed to just boiling ground beans and drinking the water) had lower rates of arterial disease and death.
The study’s authors concluded that the substances in coffee that can raise LDL cholesterol – the “bad” kind – can be removed using a filter; they said a cup of unfiltered coffee typically contains about 30 times the concentration of the lipid-raising substances compared with filtered coffee.
~ Human Kenetics Journal – https://bit.ly/3JjH4rI
~~ Oxford Academic – https://bit.ly/3JsBnrq
Caffeine (1, 3, 7- trimethylxanthine) is a toxin that some plants produce to defend themselves. Small amounts are not harmful to humans, but have stimulant effects, making users feel more alert and energised. Typical use of the drug comes from caffeinated drinks such as coffee and tea, and also soft drinks such as cola and ‘energy drinks’.
Like other stimulant drugs such as cocaine, caffeine in high enough doses can harm and kill. However, caffeine use is very much safer and more manageable than the use of cocaine and other potent stimulants, and only exceptionally rarely causes serious harm. ***