Friday, April 13, 2012

10 Things To Like And Not Like About Coffee

After a period of darkness in honor of Caballo Blanco, The Straight Dope is back with a different kind of dark. This one, black as midnight on a moonless night, is some serious Friday Psyche about coffee. Here’s an excerpt from an article I wrote evaluating both the good and bad sides of the world’s favorite elixir.

From Harvard Health, "... Studies show that the risk for type 2 diabetes is lower among regular coffee drinkers than among those who don't drink it. Also, coffee may reduce the risk of developing gallstones, discourage the development of colon cancer, improve cognitive function, reduce the risk of liver damage in people at high risk for liver disease, and reduce the risk of Parkinson's disease. Coffee has also been shown to improve endurance performance in long-duration physical activities."

As you’ve probably already guessed the article is mainly positive. All 10 of the pluses and minuses listed are from major studies featuring thousands of subjects over a number of years so it’s pretty iron clad data. Some of the more surprising stats show that even excessive coffee drinking can highly beneficial.

At a 2009 conference, they reported that the likelihood of having a stroke was highest among people who didn't drink coffee and lowest among those who drank the most coffee: 5 percent of people who drank 1 or 2 cups a day suffered strokes, whereas 2.9 percent of people who drank 6 or more cups suffered strokes. So much for moderation.

The summary is that, basically, coffee is almost always good for you if it doesn’t interfere with your sleep (more important than coffee’s benefits) and you don’t load is up with a lot of junk like milk and sugar—-which can have even more dire implications than irritating Harry Callahan.


Anonymous said...

Dave Ward Seriously? I start the reset on Tuesday and I've only had 2 cups of coffee this week as I prepare. Add #11 - You'll have brutal headaches if you get used to drinking a lot and then stop. Time for some tea.
40 minutes ago · Like.

Steve Edwards When I'm going to take a break I do one cup a day for a week, then a cup of tea for a week, and then none. Gets rid of the headache completely.
33 minutes ago · Like.

Dave Ward That was my initial thought. Monday was fine without any. Tuesday was a one cup day. Wednesday I had to finish my taxes and just could not pull together a cogent thought. Yesterday I was grumpy in the AM and then went surfing and the ocean woke me up. Today I have a headbone. Enjoying some tea now and hoping the wind dies down so I can go in the ocean again. That is really way better than coffee anyway.
30 minutes ago · Unlike · 2.

Charles T Olson what about is there something about adrenal function degrading from coffee or something. All I can think is I'll get more dull over time or something if I stop haha. Adrenal == adrenaline right
13 minutes ago · Like.

Steve Edwards Adrenals work on balance. Stimulants can help or hurt. Drinking TONS of water helps when you go off of coffee (and helps in general all the time). Two large glasses in the morning is something I do first, with or without coffee.
2 minutes ago · Like · 1.

Steve Edwards SPeaking of dull, a Phil Requist during one of our no coffee phases couldn't find his phone and was looking all over the house for it, frustrated, until he found it. It was in his hand.
about a minute ago · Like

Josh said...

not drinking coffee is a bad bad idea.


jasminepw said...

If any of your readers are sensitive to caffeine like I am, I found a delicious coffee substitute that's 100% caffeine-free named Raja's Cup.

Micah said...

I call upon Official DA rule #1 - Drink Coffee. Done.


Anonymous said...

Carl why are you allowing other affiliates other than coaches for P90x? This is really heartbreaking to me. I don't understand it!?

I am referring to Perdine affiliates.

Steve Edwards said...

I'm not Carl but your question intrigued me because it made no sense so I asked Carl and he doesn't know what you're referring to either. Perhaps with a good cup of black coffee you can pitch it to us so we can provide an answer.