Coffee is very low in calories, but provides energy due to its caffeine content. While this can be beneficial from a dieting standpoint, coffee prepared with milk and sugar can be high in calories, depending on how much and what type you use.
For some people, coffee is the single largest source of antioxidants in the diet, outranking both fruits and vegetables combined.
Here are a few tips to turn your coffee from healthy to super healthy!
Although coffee is healthy in itself, you can easily turn it into something harmful. The best way to do that is to put a whole bunch of sugar in it. Added sugar is arguably one of the worst ingredients in the modern diet. Sugar, mainly due to its high amount of fructose, is linked to all sorts of serious diseases like obesity and diabetes.
If you can’t imagine living your life without a sweetener in your coffee, use a natural sweetener, like stevia.
2. Choose a Quality Brand, Preferably Organic
The quality of coffee can vary greatly depending on the processing method and how the coffee beans were grown. Coffee beans tend to be sprayed with synthetic pesticides and other chemicals that were never intended for human consumption. However, the health effects of pesticides in food are controversial. There is currently limited evidence that they cause harm when found at low levels in produce.
Nevertheless, if you are worried about the pesticide content of your coffee, consider buying organic coffee beans. They should contain much lower amounts of synthetic pesticides.
3. Avoid Drinking Too Much
While a moderate intake of coffee is healthy, drinking too much may reduce its overall benefits. Excessive caffeine intake may have various adverse side effects, although people’s sensitivity varies. In general, it’s recommend to not exceed 1.1 mg per pound (2.5 mg per kg) of body weight per day.
Given that an average cup of coffee may contain around 95 mg of caffeine, this corresponds to about two cups of coffee per day for someone weighing 176 pounds (80 kg).
However, much higher amounts of caffeine (400–600 mg) per day (about 4–6 cups) are not associated with any adverse side effects in most people.
4. Add Some Cinnamon to Your Coffee
Cinnamon is a tasty herb that mixes particularly well with the flavor of coffee. Studies show that cinnamon can lower blood glucose, cholesterol and triglycerides in diabetics. If you need some flavor, try adding a dash of cinnamon. It’s surprisingly good.
Just make sure to not put too much of it in your cup. While small amounts of cinnamon are healthy, too much may cause some adverse side effects.
5. Avoid Low-Fat and Artificial Creamers
Commercial low-fat and artificial creamers tend to be highly processed and may contain questionable ingredients. However, there is not much research on the health effects of non-dairy coffee creamers. Their contents vary by brand, and some may be healthier than others. Nevertheless, whole, natural foods are generally a better choice. Instead of a non-dairy creamer, consider adding some full-fat cream to your coffee, preferably from grass-fed cows.
Studies show that milk products contain some important nutrients. For example, dairy is an excellent calcium source and may reduce the risk of osteoporosis and bone fractures.
Additionally, grass-fed cow’s milk contains some vitamin K, which is also linked to improved bone health.
6. Add Some Cocoa to Your Coffee
Cocoa is loaded with antioxidants and associated with all sorts of health benefits, including a reduced risk of heart disease. Try adding a dash of cocoa powder to your coffee for some added flavor. Caffè mocha, a chocolate-flavored version of caffè latte, is served in many coffeehouses. However, caffè mocha is usually sugar-sweetened.
You can easily make your own at home and skip the added sugar.