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Coffee - To Drink, Or Not To Drink

Dear Dr. Kim:

For years I had the impression that coffee was not a good beverage for people due to its caffeine content.

Now I am reading articles which state that coffee has many beneficial health effects.

If you consider clarification of this matter to be of sufficient interest to your readers, would you please consider making comments about this in one of your health letters?

Sincerely,
Virginia A. Dickey

***

Dear Virginia,

Thank you for your question on coffee and its effect on long term health.

Caffeine is a natural substance found in various plants - us humans tend to get our caffeine from coffee beans and a variety of leaves that are transformed into tea. We also get smaller quantities from kola nuts, the caffeine-containing fruits that impart flavor to various beverages, most famously, Coca Cola.

Caffeine is a central nervous stimulant. Put another way, once in the bloodstream, caffeine behaves like a psychoactive drug, increasing alertness and inhibiting drowsiness.

As a stand-alone substance, caffeine can be toxic to human health when more than 10 grams are consumed in one sitting. Given that the average cup of coffee contains anywhere between 100 to 150 milligrams of caffeine, you would need to drink about 80 seven-ounce cups of coffee in one sitting to dangerously overload your central nervous system and heart, and this, quite simply, is impossible to do.

Here's the thing: when you ingest caffeine in coffee along with other naturally existing co-nutrients like flavonoids (powerful antioxidants) and small amounts of minerals like magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, potassium, and even calcium, the overall effect on your physiology isn't the same as when you ingest stand-alone caffeine found in questionable supplements and energy drinks.

Think of it in this way: getting a small amount of caffeine from freshly ground coffee beans is like getting calcium along with a number of other nutrients through green vegetables, while taking products that contain caffeine extracts is the equivalent of taking synthetic calcium supplements that are little more than crushed rock.

What about coffee's acid-forming affect on your blood pH and its potential to cause leaching of calcium out of your bones, thereby increasing your risk for osteoporosis? As explained in my article on the truth about alkalizing your blood, your body is well equipped to buffer the effects of strongly acid or alkaline-forming foods, including coffee, and as long as your consumption is moderate - say a cup or two per day - and your diet includes a good amount of nutrient-rich plant foods like greens, legumes, and perhaps some fruit, one or two cups of coffee daily likely aren't going to precipitate osteoporosis. On the other hand, lack of appropriate exercise, stretching, and intake of a good variety of nutrients, including healthy fats and protein may increase your risk of developing osteoporosis - in other words, having a little coffee shouldn't be as big a concern as what you do with the rest of your day.

So one to two cups of coffee daily is likely fine for the average adult, provided that overall diet and lifestyle are relatively healthy. But you can protect and possibly enhance your health by choosing organic varieties of coffee when possible. This is where it can be helpful to support shops and brands that make the effort to provide organic choices. Sometimes, coffee that isn't labeled as being organic may very well be organic, it's just that the shop can't claim it's organic if the organically grown beans are put through a grinder that is also used to pulverize non-organic beans, so don't be shy in asking if any offerings are made with organically grown beans.

Given that naturally occurring fatty acids in coffee beans quickly go rancid after being pulverized, it's best to go with coffee that is freshly ground; when you drink coffee made with beans that were ground months ago, you probably aren't getting much more than caffeine and flavour.

If you drink one to two cups of coffee daily, it's best for your health to get used to having it without sweetener for obvious blood-insulin and blood-sugar-related reasons. And given that casein and whey from homogenized and pasteurized dairy are problematic for many people, I think it's best to drink coffee black or to use non-dairy milk like soy, rice, or almond milk to lighten it up.

Now if you're the type to indulge in a decadent concoction like Starbucks' Caramel Ribbon Crunch Frappuccino once every couple of months with a good friend or two, so long as your body isn't clearly distressed from these occasional treats, who's to say that the good vibes that are generated from occasional happy outings with your besties don't outweigh the potential stress that such treats place on your endocrine system? As I like to say, it feels a little inconsequential to strive to be healthy just to be healthy; good health is best sought to allow for a life that is abundant in love, gratitude, and meaning, right?

The idea is to be sensibly balanced with our daily choices, and to be aware that if we choose to drink coffee, we need to be moderate in quantity and choose the best quality available.

If you have any thoughts that you'd like to add to this topic, please use the comments section below. Thank you.

 
 

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Almost sure that coffee

Almost sure that coffee hinders the ability to lose weight. Believe (have not verified) it must reduce insulin sensitivity or possibly the increase in cortisol. I'm testing myself to understand the effects, trying to switch to green tea instead. Anyone else on the theory?

coffee for weight loss

I dont have any articles to cite for you, but I have read many times over in the past that coffee supports weight loss because of the caffeine - it tends to stimulate your metabolism. However, for every article that says coffee is good for you I am sure there is an article that says the opposite. This is true of many dietary theories out there. I avoid the confusion nowadays and simply take an intuitive approach. I dont over consume coffee so I just go with my gut and be conscious of how i feel when i drink it.

same idea bout coffee

Doug, I have had the same feeling for a long time. I kept thinking I was imagining it because "they" say that th'e caffeine speeds up your metabolism so that should help weight loss. Then I had a blood test that showed I'm allergic, or at least sensitive to, coffee and caffeine. I didn't have remarkable symptoms but I felt like it was slowing me down and having a negative overall effect on my digestion and energy. So, now I suspect that coffee hinders weight loss in some people - most likely those who are also sensitive to gluten ( which means most people!), or have other similar food allergies.

Interesting that you've noted

Interesting that you've noted this. I typically give up coffee for Lent and typically lose some weight, one year 10 lbs! I assumed it was because I often have something sweet with my coffee.

Coffe and caffein

I am so impressed with your reply on this topic. You certainly have written it with the knowledge and the sensibility that is so expected of you. But one thing for sure , you have made m feel comfortable about taking one or two cups a day. Thanks

I vote YES to coffee...

After a diagnosis of Hashimoto's thyroiditis, I did an elimination of coffee, gluten, eggs, dairy, soy, & sugar. Test results came in and I added back eggs and soy (in moderation and preferably fermented.)

The DC that I was seeing asked about how I was feeling after the elimination. Based on my feedback, he suggested I have 1 cup of coffee in the morning since studies show that some people with autoimmune disorders do better with coffee than without. It was unknown to him how or why this works, but it varies by individual and I am a good candidate for coffee.

After reading Dr. Kim's blog, I think that 1-2 cups of coffee can benefit anyone who likes the taste and has no sensitivities.

Bobbi Creech
Belmont, NC

miasm coverup

Caffeine is an alkaloid insecticide. Hahnemann's early thoughts on the causation of all disease especially miasms related to caffeine. Things like essential fatty acids dampen autoimmune responses because they shut off the immune system. No one ever bothers to ask why the immune system was reacting in the first place. This is the essence of a miasm. If it is pushed deeper in you will not be symptomatic but you will still have the condition. When people stop drinking coffee and caffeine then the old diseases that have fermented for decades surface worse than if they had been addressed when they were erupting.

coffee

Thanks so much for this - as usual, you are balanced and informed in your comments - no extremes. I love it! As someone with mild to moderate Attention Deficit Disorder, I KNOW that one or two cups of coffee each day helps me focus and concentrate and be productive. I also know that different people have different reactions to different substances/influences and that for some people it may be best to avoid caffeine altogether. What is true for one person may not necessarily be true for all...Thanks, Dr. Kim, for your amazing work and for the positive difference you make. G~

Roasting

As a coffee drinker, I would like any reason to blindly drink it without any concern, but one thing not addressed in your article (that is very helpful) is roasting. I have heard about carcinogenic effects of roasting/charring/grilling etc. and what we think to be beneficial or seemingly harmless about coffee becomes distorted after roasting...Doesn't Starbucks have to put up warning signs in California because of their roasting process?

Carcinogenic coffee

Great point, Jillian. I love my espressos so much, but coffee has high levels of carcinogenic Acrylamide, FDA dixit. http://www.fda.gov/Food/FoodborneIllnessContaminants/ChemicalContaminants/ucm053549.htm

Acrylamides

Jose is right, I gave up coffee because of the cancer causer.

Coffee

I like my cup of coffee in the morning. I put organic raw cacao in it and I do use some organic half and half. It's more ritual than wake me up.

The recent pro coffee articles have been very well received. For the rest of the day I stick to lemon water and green tea with lemon.

Acrylamide FDA tests, creamer, and cinnamon

Hi -- Just read some potentially useful info on FDA testing of coffee for acrylamide; turns out content varies greatly, and counterintuitively, depending on the sample. For some reason, of the samples tested, lighter roasts and decaf had more acrylamide, darker roasts and specifically Yuban dark roast had less. Coffee is, indeed, one of the most pesticided and herbicided crops in the world, so if you drink coffee, maybe go for a dark organic roast, not decaffeinated. I am a coffee drinker, and with both my parents suffering from some degree of dementia, I now use canned coconut milk (Thai Kitchen has an organic brand) to, in theory, help my brain work better, longer. And hooray for raw cacao, beneficial AND a tasty addition to the morning cuppa. :-) I also add 1 tsp cinnamon to the dry ground coffee in the filter for insulin control, and mix it in slightly w/ a small whisk or fork, but keep it away from the filter, as it can slow or clog the drip. --

what about acrylamide ?

Great article as usual Dr. Kim! I definitely agree that moderation is key if one wants to enjoy coffee without doing much harm to oneself. I noticed that you neglected to mention the high levels of acrylamide in coffee, especially darker roasts that may have been burnt. Since coffee is a daily routine for so many, myself included, I fear that a daily intake of a suspected carcinogen would not qualify as moderation. Could you please give your thoughts about that? thanks!

Hemp Milk!! (?)

Thanks for this article Dr. Kim! I have been drinking coffee for about half my life. Over the last ten years or so, it seems like one can find articles online that either prove or disprove coffee's benefits (depending on what you're looking for). Either way, I like the taste, and have a couple cups/day around 40% of the time. Other than that, I wanted to add to your non-dairy comment... I am lactose-intolerant, recently had some issues with soy and switched to hemp milk for my coffee. The thickness is similar to milk or cream and for some reason (I'm not a doctor), I think it is easier on my stomach than coffee alone. I searched your website for info on hemp milk, but didn't find much. Any thoughts? I would love to hear what you have to say about it! Thank you!

Hemp food products

I, too, would like some thoughts on hemp food products ie hemp seed, hemp protein powder and hemp oil. It is relatively new addition to the food industry (although hemp has been cultivated by ancient civilisation for its fibre and nutritional value) and wonder what Dr. Kim has to say about it.
I do love products made from hemp fibre ie textiles, body care products among others.

Monika

Coconut Milk

I use coconut milk with my freshly ground coffee!
Its beautiful!

The water in your tap is full of carcinogenics & poisons.

Remember!

We all have a Sell By Date!

Its later than you think!

Enjoy yourself!

Good article on coffee. I've

Good article on coffee. I've always been a tea drinker, but there are phases I go through where I like to switch to coffee for awhile. I also want to thank you precisely for taking the time to write in the last paragraph that it is better to indulge with a friend than avoid the indulgence alone. It seems common sense, but the prevalence of eating disorder behaviour, especially orthorexic behaviour in the current health food movement, seems to be on the rise. With my own ED history, I know this all too well. Scouring health food blogs and advice from people like yourself, there are very few health blogs out there willing to mention what you just mentioned, as a simple reminder. For your particular audience, it is a crucial message. People reading health food blogs every day are the ones at most risk for developing orthorexic or other ED behaviour, since they tend to spend all of their time focusing on food and health. Because a lot of blogs never mention the act of stepping back for a minute and reminding the reader to look at health as the BIG PICTURE, most readers are quietly bombarded with pressure to be more and more rigid in their choices.
- Caitlin

Great post

You're absolutely right, health is a means to an end and not an end in itself. We do well to strive to keep healthy, but as long as it doesn't become the absolute focus of our lives, deteriorating relationships, and generating negative and/or arrogant attitudes towards others.

VERY WELL SAID RAPHAEL:-)

VERY WELL SAID RAPHAEL:-)

Coffee has changed alot in the last few years not all high acid

Not all coffee is 140MG per cup. The old style coffee still is but that is the cheap junk found typically in the grocery store. Italian coffee bought in Europe and other countries and now in the USA is about 10mg - 14 mg caffeine and does not raise the heart rate or cause any of the traditional caffeine responses. A basic chocolate bar bought in the grocery store or health store has more caffeine than a cup of Italian coffee. The same issue also goes for Hevla low acid coffee which is designed for people with sensitive stomachs. I will note that Italian coffee can be used by anyone with sensitive stomachs. Italian coffee can be bought thru Amazon.com. It requires refrigeration which is uncommon for most coffees.

I use coffee 14 oz a day of Italian coffee to help open my lungs as it has theophylline and caffeine which is good for those of us with asthma or COPD. I do this before my breathing treatment each morning as it makes my breathing treatments much more effective in getting the goop out of my lungs that is ready to break loose. The comparison in doing the coffee before and after the breathing treatment has been tested and my conclusion is do the Italian coffee before the breathing treatment; I get thru the day much easier and need less hand inhaler treatments as a result. My doctor and respiratory therapy person highly recommend coffee for asthma and COPD. The hospital recommends it and when I have been hospitalized I had coffee of any kind with each meal; it gets me out of the hospital faster if I do so. So I disagree with the article. Coffee especially the low acid or the alkaline Italian coffee is healthy in moderation, such as no more than 24 ounces a day. Italian coffee registers about an 8.5 when I test my mouth for ph levels after having a cup.

Thanks Dr. Ben!!!! Fantastic

Thanks Dr. Ben!!!! Fantastic wisdom as always. ^_^

Cuppa Joe

A recent article mentioned having a "napalatte"...drinking a small cup of coffee immediately before taking about a 10-20 min. nap, stating the caffeine takes about 20 min. to kick into the system. You awaken with a renewed/elevated energy level. I found this to be true and enjoy a "napallatte" a few times a week. Costco carries a reasonably priced, delightful organic coffee, Mayorga. Cheers to life...abundantly lived!

coffee

as an alternative "creamer" for coffee I've found that coconut milk works really really well, very tasty, creamy, and unless you have extraordinary taste-buds, you might actually think it was dairy. I have this little battery operated frother and it makes a great foam. If you put the coconut milk in the fridge and use a cold metal beaker (like for frothing milk for a cappuccino) then it also gets nice and stiff and not just foamy.

Coffee

I was glad to read what you recommended on coffee consumption. I have been doing what you suggest for years - drinking only 2 cups of organic coffee which I grind myself (only sometimes I add a little cream and raw honey or maple syrup to it.) I was wondering what your thoughts are on organic Swiss water decaffeinated coffee?
Many thanks,
Shelley

Just my two cents' worth

Coffee is more than caffeine. While your article is excellent, here's more info, a pretty broad look:

http://www.itmonline.org/arts/coffee.htm

You can even get chlorogenic acid pills at the health food stores, now!

When you mentioned that Starbucks product, I thought you were making a joke, that you'd just made that up to make a point. So I looked it up: Starbucks' Caramel Ribbon Crunch Frappuccino really exists! I'd say it is more like a rich pudding, for heaven's sake, than a simple old fashioned beverage!

I worked in offices for many years. Deadly work even if you liked your job and your co workers. It's not natural to be at a desk or cubicle all day, so everyone lived for many cups of coffee to keep them going. Offices & other workplaces, indoors & out, cannot do without coffee, and plenty of it. Want to make a revolution, collapse the economy? Easy peasey! Just ban coffee from the country, most folks won't be able to function at all. I am not exaggerating. The revolution will be violent, too, because of the hideous headache that coffee withdrawal gives you.

Thanks for the article, Ben!

coffee

I appreciate reading the information you have presented here. I wonder if anyone might have some insight about something. I rarely drink more than one cup of coffee a day and frequently leave it alone for a few weeks at a time. But I notice when I am drinking it that it seems to cause a bit of reflux which I don't feel except that it makes my throat a bit hoarse. Anyone have any ideas about this? Thanks.

coffee and reflux

That was an intersting article and I largely agree with it, but the question asked about reflux I think mayy have a bearing on a comment I wnated to make.
There are different kinds of coffee, as well as different degrees of roasting. Most coffees are a blend of Arabica and Robusta. Arabica gives the nice full flavour. Robusta is more bitter - and cheaper for the blender. A coffee which is high on Robusta is hard on the stomach, Arabica is much milder. My advice to your anonymous correspondant is to try and find a coffee which is 100% Arabica.
My own consumption nowadays is a mere cup or two a week. I used to drink a cup of coffee most days, but then I started feeling rather zombie-like, and sounding almost drunk. Well, if you have to keep alert mid -afternoon and you are droping off to sleep half way through a word you ... have a nice cup of coffee. But then I noticed that that actually made mattA shower makes an excellent waker-upper it got much worse, a lmost instantaneously! I cut out coffee completely for several weeks and became much more alert. As I am also alergic to black and green tea I am the living (and lively) proof at 66 that there is life after coffee.

Natural is always best

I will drink coffee over a soda pop any day - in general, for health purposes, I think a good rule of thumb is to consume things that are closer to nature rather than derived in a lab somewhere. Less processed, less artificial ingredients, etc.

coffee, et al....

Ben,

I would concur with your entire article, except for the use of soy milk... unfermented soy should be avoided at all cost !

Arnold

coffee

Couldn't agree more! People, please do some research on soy. Start with reading The Whole Soy Story, by Dr. Daniels.

coffee

Nobody mentioned decaf...what about it? That's what I drink because caffeine doesn't agree with me. Do you get the same health benefits from it?

decaf coffee

I wanted to reply to your comment because I remember reading in an article here that decaf coffee is actually not the best for your health because it contains high amounts of acrylamide not found in regular coffee. Perhaps because it is not coffee in it's natural form. Look for the article "Frequently Asked Questions and Anwsers on Acrylamide."

coffee

I believe your suggestion that coffee in moderation is all right is most welcome.

Coffee plus "new to your blog"

I'm brand new to Ben's blog, but what I've read really impresses me. Great attitude, Dr.Kim, plus lots of well articulated knowledge. And your readership seems full of other thoughtful, health conscious folks also. Good health and happiness to us all! Re coffee, there's an old zen expression, "A fish cannot live in pure water", but coffee gives me the shakes. So I stick to Pu-erh or Oolong tea, and drink only a cup or two of coffee a week.

Coffee

Great article. I drink 1 cup of freshly ground organic coffee first thing in the morning. I add a teaspoon of coconut oil, a teaspoon of butter and a dab of honey. It is delicious. The oil floats on the surface so you get a bit with each sip. I will have a second cup only for social reasons. If I am out I will drink the coffee black.

hi i had just bought my first

hi i had just bought my first coffee of the summer on this cold morning and five minutes later ur email abt coffee came in...though that was ironic, i loved ur article! one question, is coffee addictive? my dad started with one or two a day now he cant stop. and many ppl cant make it without their morning coffee, is this a valid concern?

coffee

I love coffee, but find health info about it is usually simplistic.

The role coffee plays in one's life will determine whether it unfolds health enhancing or health depleting attributes. In moderation, it appears to be beneficial. It can easily be abused, however, and our upbringing, our addictive tendencies, and our stressful lifestyle push many to freely use coffee as an energetic crutch. I believe--and the alternative health community believes this as well--that it then loses its benefits and plays into adrenal depletion and chronic fatigue.

Remarkably, we don't have studies on the impact of coffee on the unborn child. We have absolutely no idea what a child would look like, born to a healthy mother who does not use any form of caffeine. Studies on rodents show that even a minimal dosage will have a negative impact on development of the offspring. It's really almost as though our scientists don't want to "go there" because no one wants to look at that news.

Bottom line, we should know far more about this ubiquitous drug that we all love so much.

Regular Coffee

Having a cup of regular coffee with milk is a meditation time for me. Very special to remember
my grandparents giving me a sip with cookie when I was small and my Mother's offering me
coffee for breakfast when I started high school. It still continues and keeps me healthy in Mind,
Body, Spirit.

Children & coffee.

When my sister & I were young in the late 1950s (around ages 5 & 8) we were allowed a bit of coffee with cream added for breakfast. And it was made strong, too, what they call "bush coffee" - just boiled on the stove. I never became addicted in any way, shape or form to coffee as a result. I don't drink it very often, maybe 3 or 4 cups per month. F.W.I.W.!!

The coffee debate

Caffeine is a drug. All drugs impact the body and its function, and individual health is just that - individual. Most individuals don't know how coffee impacts their health. So, notwithstanding that coffee is an govt. health authority-approved food product, drink it in sensible moderation.

Further question on coffee

Ben, but what about the carcinogenic aspects i hear about coffee ? what is your take on that ? Thanks.

Daily coffee

Hi Dr Kim
What you say sounds very reasonable but I find that having even one cup a day interferes with my output as a writer. Having one cup after a caffiene-free week feels great and it noticeably boosts my creativity. But when I later reread what I've written I often have to redo a lot of it. And the next day I feel low in energy and have difficulty writing.
It's similar, though not as pronounced, with green tea, which I would like to drink daily for its many health benefits. What I generally do is try to confine my coffee and tea drinking to saturday afternoon when I sit in an internet cafe in town and write for 3-4 hours as a weekly treat.
I am probably a bit sensitive to caffeine, when I was an office-worker about 15 years ago I would drink around 8 cups a day of filter coffee but after a while it'd give me a tic in my eyelid and I'd know then to take a magnesium supplement and have a rest from the coffee for a few days.
Even so, it would seem to me that everyone would experience some rebound effect from having even one cup of coffee, that's just what happens when we take stimulant drugs. But most people wouldn't notice it if they weren't watching for it, we'd just put it down to having an off day. Try having no stimulants (including sugar and refined carbs) for a week or two and see if you notice a caffeine shot then.

As usual Dr. K... very

As usual Dr. K... very balanced point of view. Thanks for that. I drink very little coffee, but occasionally need a 'boost' that a cup of coffee can give. Thanks for your post!

Drinking coffee

I agree with you, Dr. Kim, in many ways, including striving to maintain a balanced lifestyle.

I do want to share something with you regarding this topic of drinking coffee. A number of years ago I had the privilege of spending an entire week with Dr. Bernard Jensen (a pioneer in the natural health field, particularly in foods, colon health, and iridology), and I learned so much from him. Regarding drinking coffee..... He showed slides of a red blood cell of a person before and after this person drank coffee. The red blood cell BEFORE drinking coffee was totally clear. The red blood cell AFTER drinking coffee contained a spiderweb-like structure on the inside. This gave me a very visual learning opportunity regarding what coffee does inside a person's body. Coffee seems to have an effect on the human body at a basic level (red blood cells).

Coffee

Good article about caffeine consumption. I'd like to add that there are those of us who over react to any substance taken into the body. I am now discovering that my years of caffeine use have severely inhibited my body's ability to utilize serotonin and endorphins. For me, a cup of coffee is like ten for other people. I'd like to read more about this phenomena. Dr Gabor Mate's research on chemical reactions in the brain was a good starting point.

Coffee

Dear Dr Kim - before I comment on the coffee article I just want to add to the complementary comments about you! I just LOVE your style of writing and I think that you have the most amazing 'bedside' manner. What a refreshing change from dictatorial, Victorian attitudes! Thank you.

On the subject of coffee, I've read the book "Caffeine Blues" by Stephen Cherneske and whilst I take to heart everything he's said in there, I also think that it is something that many people can enjoy in moderation (as per your advice), provided the rest of the diet/lifestyle is healthy.

However, there are clearly some people who should avoid coffee because of the stimulant effect and this again boils down to us knowing our bodies and understanding what makes us feel good and what doesn't.

To the person who commented about does coffee/caffeine prevent weight loss, I have personally found it easier to lose weight without coffee. I'm only talking about the odd pound or two as I'm not overweight but if I have over-indulged in raw chocolate, nuts etc or eaten some bread (which I KNOW keeps the weight on!) then I can quickly get rid of the excess far easier without the caffeine. I just then switch to organic decaf.

I came to the conclusion that it was the rise in blood sugar and cortisol that was the issue - it is known as an endocrine disrupter and anything that disrupts hormones can mess with your metabolism and therefore your weight. Hope this helps.
Love and health to all

Yes coffee, the real thing!

I quit drinking coffee a year ago, it was very difficult to do! Coffee is wonderful and addictive! Just wanted to remind people that if you drink coffee, drink the real thing, not decaf. Decaf coffee is not the natural product and has high acrylamide. Read Dr. Kim's article "Frequently Asked Questions and Answers on Acrylamide."

While I agree to the benefits

While I agree to the benefits of drinking coffee, I feel advising people to drink black coffee is a no no. I have relatives who drank only black coffee and are diabetic now. I don't think its an isolated issue to solely blame black coffee but I believe there to be a definite relation to blood sugar and black coffee. I highly recommend using cream and sugar and only drinking coffee with or after a meal. Never on an emptyv stomach. Stay away from the estrogen mimicking soy and pufa almond milk. If you want to stay away from dairy, try coconut milk or cream.

caffeine

I don't believe that caffeine belongs in the human body, it is
a stimulant and we have many today with heart problems,
insomnia, etc, and it is addictive,

caffeine is not very good at all

I've been drinking coffee for years and lately I find that it actually makes me tired. I took some notes (I don't remember from where) and I would like to share this with people. I understand about moderation also, but many people drink 2-3 cups a day or more. I also know for a fact that many people will be tired from thyroid problems along with other health issues and use caffeine to get through the day.

"Caffeine doesn't keep you awake and alert by supplying extra energy; rather it fools your body into thinking it is not tired.
* When your brain is tired and wants to slow down, it releases a chemical called adenosine.
* Adenosine travels to special cells called receptors, where it goes to work counteracting the chemicals that stimulate your brain.
* Caffeine mimics adenosine; so it can "plug up" your receptors and prevent adenosine from getting through. Result: Your brain never gets the signal to slow down, and keeps building up stimulants.
* After a while your brain figures out what's going on, and increases the number of receptor cells so it has enough for both caffeine and adenosine.
* When that happens, caffeine can't keep you awake anymore...unless you increase the amount you drink so it can "plug up" the new receptors cells as well.
* This whole process only takes about a week. In that time , you essentially become a caffeine addict. Your brain is literally restructuring itself to run on caffeine; take caffeine away and your brain has too many receptor cells to operate properly.
* If you quit ingesting caffeine "cold turkey", your brain begins to reduce the number of receptors right away. But the process takes about two weeks, and during that time your body sends out mild "distress signals" in the form of headaches, lethargy, fatigue, muscle pain, nausea, and sometimes even stiffness and flu-like symptoms.
As a result it behooves you to cut out caffeine gradually."

 

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