Is Coffee our Friend or Foe?

 

There is a plethora of information out there regarding the consumption of coffee. Is it healthy or unhealthy to drink coffee? How much is too much? Unfortunately, this is a complicated subject, and a lot of information provided by scientist tends to contradict. And one of the main reasons for this occurrence is due to coffee being composed of many chemicals.

The most common chemical present in coffee, which is also responsible for causing addiction, is caffeine. Many plants, such as cocoa leaves and tea leaves, produce caffeine as an insecticide. This chemical keeps predators away from them. But although caffeine is not lethal to humans, it does provide one with several effects, stimulation which countless people crave.

Our bodies produce a chemical called adenosine, and this chemical, if present in large amounts, is what makes us sleepy. Caffeine bonds to the receptors of this hormone and prevents it from sending signals to our brain, signals which makes us sleepy. However, caffeine also stimulates our nervous system and adrenaline, which can cause us negative effects in high amounts. Common negative effects are high levels of anxiety and abnormal levels of blood pressure, which can be worst to certain individuals.

But scientists like Sergio Cortes have found out the there are other chemicals that are as influential as caffeine. There are a group of chemicals known as polyphenols, and these are also produce by many fruits and vegetables as insecticides as well. They are found a lot in super foods, such as broccoli. And studies show that people that consume conventional amounts of coffee a day have a daily intake of polyphenols of at least one gram.

In order to obtain a good balance, researchers recommend that people stick to lighter roasts, which is where polyphenols tend to be more prominent. They also recommend to people to not drink more than two cups of coffee within an hour in order to not overdose in caffeine. Thus, the answer to this question is still not objective, and drinking coffee is still healthy.

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