COFFEE- GOOD OR BAD?
Coffee is one of the most popular and important beverages of all times. In fact, it was once called as ‘the gasoline of life’. Coffee acquires a second place in the list of most traded commodity in the world after petroleum. All of you have actually seen the brown powdered coffee. But, what do we know about its origin? Rarely, a few of you are actually well versed with its origin and all. Let me give you a handful of information about coffee.
What is coffee?
Coffee is one of the most used beverages in the world. It is actually the seed of a coffee cherry. The time taken by the seed to germinate into a coffee plant is approximately 2.5 months. These plants then take approximately 3-4 years to begin producing fruit. These plants produce flowers which grow into coffee cherries within a time range of about 30-35 weeks. After about 4-5 years of planting, the coffee cherries can be harvested. After harvesting is done, they are processed so as to get the coffee bean out of the coffee cherry properly through the process of dry processing or wet processing. These green beans are then roasted in high temperatures. Finally, after grinding and brewing it, the final coffee which you purchase in the market is ready.
What is the composition of coffee?
Coffee is extensively rich in a chemical compound 1,3,7-trimethylxanthine, commonly called as caffeine. This stimulant present in coffee is found in almost 60 plant species including cocoa-beans. Caffeine is sometimes added to soft drinks and other beverages.
What is the process of making coffee?
Well, as previously mentioned there are several steps involved in the process of a coffee reaching your cup. Let us discuss them.
- Planting– the first step is planting the coffee seeds. This is usually done in the wet season so as to provide continuous moisture to the roots.
- Harvesting- there are many varieties of coffee plant and the time taken by these plants to get ready to be harvested is also different. Generally, this time can be said to be equal to 3-4 years. As soon as the coffee cherry turns bright red, it is ready to be harvested. These can be harvested in two ways- strip picked and selectively picked.
- Processing- after harvesting, the cherries need to be processed immediately in order to avoid them from being spoilt. This can be done in two ways- dry method and the wet
- Drying- after the processing is done, the coffee beans needs to be dried in order to prepare them for storage.
- Milling- thereafter, milling is done in three ways- hulling, polishing, grading and sorting.
- Exporting- the milled beans which can now be more appropriately called as the green coffee are exported in jute or sisal bags.
- Tasting- the coffee is then tested for quality in the process called as cupping in a room specially designed for this purpose.
- Roasting- after tasting is successfully done, coffee is roasted in order to provide us with the aromatic brown beans to be purchased from stores. Roasting usually takes place at a temperature of about 550 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Grinding- grinding is done in order to enhance the flavor of coffee. Higher the grinding, the more quickly coffee is prepared.
- Brewing-the final stage is brewing the coffee.
What are the merits of drinking coffee?
There are a number of reasons to drink coffee. Let us know some of them.
- A powerful antioxidant- coffee acts as a powerful antioxidant in the body. This property of coffee helps it to fight against inflammation which is the root cause of many diseases like arthritis, cancer, etc. the antioxidant present in coffee help in neutralizing the free radicals so as to prevent the formation of oxidative stress that can lead to many diseases.
- Acts as stomach cleaner- Being a diuretic beverage, the consumption of coffee increases the urge to urinate. Urination flushes out all the harmful bacteria and toxic substances in the body which cleanses the stomach well.
- A memory booster– the ingredients present in coffee provide an impetus to the memory capacity of individuals by giving them a short time boost.
- Facilitates weight loss– The consumption of black coffee helps in losing extra pounds and achieving your weight loss goals. This happens as coffee boost metabolism in the body by approximately 50%, burns fat in the stomach and helps in the breakdown of fat cells.
- Protects against cognitive decline– the consumption of coffee can restrict the formation of beta-amyloid plaque which decreases the risk of diseases like Alzheimer’s diseases, forms of dementia, etc.
- Cardiovascular health- the consumption of coffee has a positive impact on the cardiovascular health of the individual. Besides other quality, the anti-inflammatory property of coffee reduces the risk of strokes, heart attacks, etc.
- Enhances sharpness of the mind– the intake of coffee is scientifically proven to improve your brain performance and increase the memory capacity thus promoting mental sharpness.
- Fights cancer- the presence of polyphenols, phytochemicals, and antioxidants in the coffee tend to reduce the inflammation which is responsible for many types of Thus, it fights cancer well.
- Increases life- Studies and researches have proved that the intake of coffee is bound to reduce the risk of death in comparison to those who do not drink coffee.
- Protects against type-2 diabetes– coffee protects the body against type-2 diabetes by facilitating the body to use insulin so as to effectively regulate blood sugar. Not only this, but it also prevents any sort of tissue damage and fights inflammation well which are potential factors for type 2 diabetes.
- Affects liver health- coffee is very helpful in the prevention of the body against diseases like The intake of coffee reduces the blood level of the liver enzyme. High blood level is responsible for the damage. Thus, coffee protects liver health.
- Fights depression- coffee activates neurotransmitters like dopamine and serotonin. These neurotransmitters play a vital role in controlling the mood. So, in this way coffee tackles depression well.
- Improves exercise performance- coffee increases the level of adrenaline in the body which helps in preparing the body for intense exercise. Not only this, it facilitates the breakdown of stored body fat to free fatty acids which are to be used as a fuel.
What are the demerits of drinking coffee?
Let us know the demerits of drinking coffee.
- Promotes insomnia and restlessness- the presence of caffeine in coffee actually reduces your sleep and makes you insomniac.
- Negative impact on pregnant women– the intake of coffee should be restricted during pregnancy as the babies are caffeine sensitive due to the immature metabolic system in them. So, when the caffeine reaches the fetus, it is not expected to have a good impact on the health of the baby. In fact, women taking huge amounts of coffee can face fertility problems in life as caffeine obstructs the muscle activity in the Fallopian This activity is responsible for the transport of eggs from the ovaries to the womb.
- Not good for high cholesterol people- the ingredients present in coffee i.e., cafestol and kahweol increases the level of LDL cholesterol in the body. This increase is a risk for people with high cholesterols.
- Affects detoxification process– the ingredients of coffee interfere with the normal drug metabolism and the detoxification process in the liver. Sometimes, this interference can make it hard to regulate the detoxification process.
- Increase in blood pressure– prolonged coffee consumption is associated with an increase in blood pressure.
- Risk of addiction– the intake of coffee can lead to an addiction to This addiction is not good as excessive consumption of caffeine will have a negative impact on the health of an individual.
- Affects mood- the consumption of coffee alters mood and anxiety level in the body. This happens because of the production of various neurotransmitters. Sometimes, this proves to be harmful and if you already have issues of anxiety, heart problems, etc. , you will land yourself in trouble.
What can be the final conclusion?
Well, there are a number of advantages of coffee consumption. With these advantages, there are attached risks. Even these risks are many. So, the question is- what should be done? Well, the best solution in such cases would be- coffee should be consumed but in limited quantity. In fact, a certain class of persons like pregnant women, kids should be kept away from it. Apart from this, you are free to drink coffee but always remember to limit its intake.