Whether you wake at dawn to get kids ready for school, work the nightshift, or simply enjoy the taste, it’s clear that many people just love coffee. And whether you drink it black or add a little non-dairy milk, the polyphenols in coffee might be able to support your health. Read on to learn more about how bioactive compounds like chlorogenic acid, gallic acid, phenolic acid, and other polyphenols in coffee may be beneficial for your health.
Polyphenols In Coffee
Believe it or not, coffee actually boasts the highest total polyphenol content in any beverage, followed closely by oxidative stress-fighting green tea and black tea. But coffee polyphenols, like chlorogenic acids, might also help support:
- Heart health
- Healthy blood sugar levels
- Healthy blood pressure
Coffee contains the following polyphenols — chlorogenic acids, cinnamic acid, ferulic acid, caffeic acid, quinic acid, hydroxycinnamic acid, and melanoidin.2 When it comes to polyphenols in coffee, it turns out that the highest content of polyphenolic compounds (like flavanol) and antioxidants was found in light and medium roast coffees.3,4
Coffee And Antioxidants: Everything You Need To Know
Now, when it comes to coffee and antioxidants, there’s some more good news.
Many recent studies have confirmed that the accumulation of free radicals in a person’s bodily fluids might cause certain pathological changes in your body.
The result may be premature aging and potential health issues.5 When you increase the number of free radicals in your cells (by overexposing yourself to the sun or consuming lectins, for example), it opens up your body to the processes of oxidative stress. In this scenario, free radicals can oxidize your blood vessel walls, protein molecules, DNA, carbohydrates, and even lipids.
Unfortunately, these radicals can actually change the properties of your cell membranes by breaking certain bonds in your DNA molecules or damaging your cells’ ability to regulate their growth. This may result in some pretty serious health issues.6
However, consuming certain amounts of natural antioxidants (like vitamin C) contained in coffee, vegetables, in-season berries, olive oil, tea, cocoa, wine, and other foods may help. And luckily, coffee is one of the biggest sources of antioxidants in the average person’s daily diet.7
Coffee And Caffeine: Everything You Need To Know
It’s a well-known fact that caffeine can be a natural stimulant. Mostly, it affects your central nervous system. When you consume caffeine, you may experience a temporary increase in your ability to focus.
Caffeine can also provide a much-needed energy boost when you’re feeling fatigued.8 But be aware; the effects of caffeine should peak within an hour or so after it’s been consumed. Your body will eliminate about half of what you consumed within about six hours.
But everyone’s reaction to caffeine is different depending on how sensitive they might be or how fast you drink your coffee.9 For most people, drinking caffeine poses no real health risk. But that only holds true if you consume moderate amounts of caffeine.10 400 mg of caffeine a day (about the amount of caffeine in four cups of coffee), is caffeine considered to be safe.
There’s no link to long-term blood pressure effects or heart health or circulatory issues (at that level).11 Conversely, if you have experienced ANY heart health issue, it’s advised to keep your dosage to no more than 200 mg a day.12
If you have any concerns about your caffeine intake, speak to your doctor.
Best For… Antioxidants? Yes! And Polyphenols
Remember, coffee and tea are the best sources of caffeine because they also contain immune-supportive antioxidants and polyphenols. The trick, though, is to play it conservatively when you attempt to sweeten your coffee or add any type of creamer. Dr. G recommends the following options if you need a little milk or sweetness to compliment your coffee —
- A2 Cow milk
- Goat milk creamer
- Organic goat or sheep kefir heavy cream
- Unsweetened blanched almond milk
- Unsweetened coconut milk or cream
- Hemp milk
- Boca Sweet
Coffee is so nutty, earthy, and delicious. It’s a great morning beverage while on a lectin-free diet. Just make sure you don’t use any processed creamers or sugars. And while you don’t want to go overboard with your caffeine consumption, a couple cups a day shouldn’t pose any risk. But again, always talk to your doctor to determine how much caffeine is right for you. You can even use coffee in your recipes for lectin-free bakes, marinades for wild-raised animal proteins, and as a seasoning on your grain-free granolas. Coffee makes everything better, and the polyphenols in coffee may support your health as well. So enjoy.
Sources 1 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5836016/ 2 https://www.scielo.br/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S1677-04202006000100003&lang=pt 3 https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S030881461100762X 4 https://www.coffeeandhealth.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/03/Coffee-polyphenols-and-CVD-report_FINAL_150319.pdf 5 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4665516/ 6 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4665516/ 7 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4665516/ 8 https://www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/the-buzz-about-caffeine-and-health 9 https://www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/the-buzz-about-caffeine-and-health 10 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5445139/ 11 https://www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/the-buzz-about-caffeine-and-health 12 https://www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/the-buzz-about-caffeine-and-health