Meghan is a Nutrition Education Specialist for DPH.
You can’t miss it every morning- long lines of people walking like robots to get their legal, mind-altering beverage. As a non-coffee drinker, I started to wonder why so many people are so devoted to coffee, and started looking into the benefits and dangers of coffee. Coffee is consumed by many adults because it improves mood, mental performance, and physical activity. A typical coffee-shop coffee can easily contain 550 mg of caffeine, which almost immediately makes people become keener and wide awake. Some even drink coffee to decrease appetite and burn calories (although the burn is minimal).
There is a lot of conflicting research about the benefits and dangers of coffee usage, which makes it almost impossible for the medical community to come to a conclusion about the effects that drinking coffee has on the body. Now I’m more uncertain about the health effects that come along with drinking coffee than I was before!
On the one hand, many studies link coffee use to the development of medical conditions, such as high cholesterol, high blood pressure, heartburn, irregular heart beat (anxiety), insomnia, and headaches.
On the other hand, I found other studies that denied the negative findings mentioned above. One study, by Harvard School of Public Health, indicates that coffee may be more healthful than harmful. Coffee's long-term effects on cardiovascular health may be positive, and also suggested that moderate to high coffee use (about 6 cups per day) is linked with a significantly lower risk of diabetes. The evidence is also very strong linking regular coffee consumption to reduced risk of Parkinson’s disease, and boosting mind concentration and increased athletic performance.
Despite the newer evidence that coffee may have health benefits, the mantra “everything in moderation” still applies. Although coffee may not be harmful, other coffee additions such as cream, sugar, and some flavors can add calories and fat to your diet. Coffee consumption may also cause physical dependence-you may become addicted- making quitting difficult and painful.
Are you one of those people that I see every morning in the coffee lines trying to get their first cup of the morning? What do you think about the benefits and dangers of coffee consumption?
Share on Facebook.
Weekly Flu Report, December 9, 2016 posted on Dec 9
The latest weekly flu report indicates that rates of flu-like illness dropped slightly over the past seven days in Massachusetts. But flu season in New England doesn’t peak until well after the New Year, so there is still plenty of reason to get a flu shot if …Continue Reading Weekly Flu Report, December 9, 2016
It’s Not Too Late to Get a Flu Vaccine! posted on Dec 5
As the busy schedule of the holiday season approaches, now is a great time to get a flu vaccine if you have not gotten vaccinated yet. A flu vaccine can protect you and your loved ones. Everyone 6 months of age and older should get …Continue Reading It’s Not Too Late to Get a Flu Vaccine!
Weekly Flu Report, December 2, 2016 posted on Dec 2
The latest weekly flu report shows that rates of flu-like illness rose slightly in the past seven days in Massachusetts. Still, it’s safe to say that flu season has yet to really kick in – which means there is still time to protect yourself and your family …Continue Reading Weekly Flu Report, December 2, 2016