The health benefits of coffee are not as simple as they seem
You have probably heard that drinking coffee is good for your health. Studies have shown that drinking moderate amounts of coffee is associated with several health benefits, including reducing the risk of type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease. While these links have been shown many times, they do not actually prove that coffee reduces the risk of disease. Proving this seems complicated is that coffee is good for health.
While it is said that consuming three to five cups of coffee a day is associated with good health benefits, this is not an easy task. Coffee is chemically complex and has many components that can affect health in different ways.
Caffeine is the best known compound in coffee; But coffee has other components as well. Here are some other ingredients in coffee that may affect your health.
AlkaloidsIn addition to caffeine, trigonelline is another important alkaloid in coffee. Trigonline has been studied less than caffeine; But research shows that it may have health benefits, such as reducing the risk of type 2 diabetes.
PolyphenolsSome studies show that these compounds, found in many plants, including cocoa and blueberries, are good for the heart and arteries and may help prevent neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s. Coffee mainly contains a group of polyphenols called chlorogenic acids. The term chlorogenic acid does not refer only to a specific compound; It is the title of a family of different isomers.
دیترپنهاCoffee contains two diterpenes (caffeol and lettuce), which make up coffee oil and is a natural fatty substance that is released during brewing. Dieterpenes may increase the risk of cardiovascular disease.
MelanoidinsThese compounds, which are produced at high temperatures and during the roasting process of coffee, are the reason for the color of coffee, and the specific taste and aroma of coffee is due to them. They may also have a prebiotic effect; That is, to increase the beneficial bacteria in the gut that are good for general health.
The method of brewing coffee and brewing and serving it can all affect the ingredients in coffee as well as its health benefits.
Breeding conditions can affect the amount of caffeine and chlorogenic acid in coffee. For example, coffee grown at higher altitudes will have less caffeine and chlorogenic acid. Two types of coffee beans, Arabica and Robusta coffee, also have different levels of caffeine, chlorogenic acid and trigonelline. It should be noted that this issue has not been studied which one may be more beneficial for health.
It’s not just about how you brew coffee; Coffee also grows on the compounds in it
Processing also affects the chemical composition of coffee. For example, some coffees are decaffeinated. This is usually done before roasting, and depending on the decaffeination method, this step may affect other ingredients as well. For example, in the decaffeination process, small amounts of chlorogenic acid are lost.
The amount of coffee roasted is also important. The higher the roasting intensity, the more melanoidin is formed and the more intense the coffee taste; But this reduces the chlorogenic acid and trigonelline content.
In the UK, instant coffee is the most common type of coffee consumed. This coffee is usually prepared by freeze drying. Studies show that instant coffee has more melanoidin than filtered coffee and espresso coffee.
The method of making coffee also affects its chemical composition. For example, brewed coffee has more diterpenes than filtered coffee. Other factors such as the amount of coffee used, the degree of grinding, the water temperature and the size of the cup also affect the chemical composition of the coffee.
Every cup of coffee is different
Health benefits of coffee
Each combination has different effects on health; For this reason, the method of producing and brewing coffee can be important. For example, chlorogenic acid is thought to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease by improving arterial function. There is also evidence that these acids may reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes by controlling postprandial hyperglycemia. In addition, diterpenes have been shown to increase low-density lipoprotein levels. Lipoprotein is a type of cholesterol that has been linked to cardiovascular disease.
While fewer studies have focused on trigonlin and melanoidin, there is some evidence that both may be beneficial to health. Adding cream, sugar and syrup will change the nutritional content of your coffee cup. These not only increase the amount of calories; Instead, they may increase your intake of saturated fats and sugars. Both are associated with an increased risk of type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease, and may counteract the beneficial effects of other compounds in coffee.
There is also evidence that people may react differently to certain coffee compounds. While coffee consumption can increase blood pressure, regular consumption of three to four cups of coffee a day has been shown to build resistance to the antihypertensive effects. Genetics may also play a role in how the body responds to caffeine and other compounds in coffee.
Growing evidence also points to the gut microbiome as an important factor in determining the health effects of coffee. For example, some studies show that intestinal microbes play an important role in chlorogenic acid metabolism; Therefore, these microbes may determine whether coffee is good for your health or not.
Researchers need to do bigger studies to confirm the findings of smaller studies that show coffee may be good for health. However, at the same time try to minimize the sugar and cream added to the coffee. If you are in good health and not pregnant, continue to take a balanced approach to coffee consumption and, if possible, choose filtered coffee.