Coffee is one of the most popular beverages in the world. Many health professionals believe it’s also one of the healthiest.
Here are a few tips to turn your coffee from healthy to super healthy.
Coffee is one of the richest natural sources of caffeine in the diet.
Abstaining from coffee after 2–3 p.m. is a good guideline. That said, not everyone is equally sensitive to caffeine, and some people may sleep just fine even if they had coffee late in the day.
Nevertheless, if you feel like you could improve your sleep, avoiding coffee late in the day could be an effective strategy.
There are many other ways you can improve your sleep quality. Read this article for more science-based tips.
Summary Drinking coffee late in the day could be impairing your sleep quality. Avoiding coffee after 2–3 p.m. is probably a good idea.
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 (7).
If you can't imagine living your life without a sweetener in your coffee, use a natural sweetener like stevia.
There are numerous ways you can reduce your intake of added sugar even further. Here are 14 additional strategies.
Summary Avoid adding sugar to your coffee. If you regularly turn your coffee into a sugary treat, you might be eliminating its overall health benefits.
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 (8).
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.
Summary If you are worried about pesticide contamination in your coffee, choose a quality, organic brand.
While a moderate intake of coffee is healthy, drinking too much may reduce its overall benefits.
In general, Health Canada recommends not exceeding 1.1 mg per pound (2.5 mg per kg) of body weight per day (9).
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) (10).
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 (11).
Read this article for detailed information about the amount of caffeine found in different coffee drinks.
Drinking coffee is all about balancing its risks and benefits. Listen to your body and consume no more than you can comfortably tolerate.
Summary Drinking too much coffee may cause adverse side effects. However, this depends on the amount of caffeine consumed and individual tolerance.
Cinnamon is a tasty herb that mixes particularly well with the flavor of coffee.
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.
Summary Spice your coffee with a dash of cinnamon. Not only does it taste good, it might also improve your health.
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.
Additionally, grass-fed cow’s milk contains some vitamin K, which is also linked to improved bone health (14).
Summary Non-dairy creamers are highly processed and may contain questionable ingredients. If you like diluting your coffee with a creamer, consider choosing whole milk or cream.
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.
Summary You can combine the benefits of coffee and dark chocolate by adding a dash of cocoa powder to your coffee.
However, reducing its levels is simple. Just use a paper filter.
Brewing coffee with a paper filter effectively lowers the amounts of cafestol but lets the caffeine and beneficial antioxidants pass through (19).
However, cafestol is not all bad. Recent studies in mice suggest it has anti-diabetic effects (20).
Summary Coffee contains cafestol, a compound that may raise blood cholesterol levels. You can lower the amount of cafestol in your coffee by using a paper filter.
Coffee is a popular beverage known for its stimulant effects.
A high intake of coffee is linked to various health benefits. However, there are several ways you can improve these benefits even further.
Most importantly, avoid loading your coffee with added sugar. Instead, you can flavor your coffee by adding a dash of cinnamon or cocoa.
Also, consider abstaining from coffee in the late afternoon and evening, as it may impair the quality of your sleep.
By following the tips above, you can make your cup of coffee even healthier.