Coffee - Pros and Cons

Topics: Caffeine, Coffee, Nurses' Health Study Pages: 9 (3096 words) Published: October 30, 2012
The Pros & Cons of Coffee
Coffee is a very interesting product. Being one of the most popular drinks in the world, it is a subject of many studies where researchers try to find out how it affects poeple's health. For a long time coffee was not considered a healthy drink. It has a history of being blamed for many ills. But some recent studies indicate that coffee may not be so bad after all. So which is it – good or bad for the health? I like coffee a lot, and to find an answer to that question for myself, I did my own research and noted the most significant benefits and potential serious health risks of coffee drinking. Here is what I have found: The "Pros"

1 Antioxidants
Coffee is a rich source of antioxidants like chlorogenic acid[6] and melanoidins. Melanoidins from roasted coffee show strong antioxidative effects depending on the way the coffee is treated [7-8] Researchers[4] found that a typical serving of coffee contains more antioxidants than typical servings of grape juice, blueberries, raspberries and oranges. Study conducted in Switzerland[1] showed that coffee contains the most amount of polyphenols in comparison to green teas, herbal tea, and cocoa. According to this study, a cup of coffee has up to four times more polyphenols than a cup of green tea. 2 Diabetes

Coffee is potentially protective against the development of type 2 diabetes. US Nurses Health Study[9] found that moderate drinking of coffee may lower the risk of type 2 diabetes in younger and middle aged women. The finding that higher consumption of decaffeinated coffee was also associated with a redused risk of diabetes suggests that the protective effect could not be attributed exclusively to caffeine, but rather should be explained by various antioxidants, most probably chlorogenic acid. Prospective study[10] based on an oral glucose test confirmed striking protective effect of caffeinated coffee against incident type 2 diabetes (in both with impaired glucose and those with normal). The time of the day when you drink coffee is also important. According to a recent research, coffee at lunchtime has the most protecting effects than in any other time of the day. 3 Parkinson’s disease

There is strong evidence that regular coffee consumption reduces the risk of Parkinson’s disease. A number of studies[11-13] have demonstrated that people who drink coffee on a regular basis are significantly less likely to develop Parkinson’s. 4 Liver damage

Coffee drinking may protect against liver cirrhosis, especially alcoholic cirrhosis[14]. A study found a 22% reduced risk of developing alcoholic cirrhosis for each cup of coffee drunk per day. Drinking three or more cups of coffee daily also lessens the risk of progression of chronic hepatitis C. 5 Gallstones

There is some evidence that coffee drinking may be protective against gallstone formation in men and women[15-16]. The study shows that regular coffee drinkers (four or more cups a day) have 25 percent less chance of developing gallstones compared to those who drink none. 6 Kidney stones

Coffee consumption lowers the risk of kidney stones formation[17-18]. According to the results of research, the risk of developing a stone fell by 10% in response to 240 ml/day of coffee. 7 Gout
Hyperuricemia (high level of uric acid in the blood) can contribute to both gout and kidney stone formation. Drinking one to three cups of coffee a day lowers gout risk by only 8%, whereas four or five cups a day may decrease the serum uric acid level and the risk of gout in men by 40%[19]. 8 Work performance

Caffeine is a well-known stimulant. Many studies[20-22] demonstrate the beneficial effects of coffee on alertness, attentiveness, and wakefulness. The cup of coffee can increase information processing. 9 Asthma

There is some evidence[5] that coffee may help manage asthma and even control attacks when medication is unavailable. Caffeine in coffee is related to theophylline, an old asthma medication. It can improve...

References: * 1. Richelle M, Tavazzi I, Offord E. Comparison of the antioxidant activity of commonly consumed polyphenolic beverages. J Agric F. Chem, 2001, 49 (7), pp 3438–3442.
* 6. Daglia M, Racchi M, Papetti A, Lanni C, Govoni S, Gazzani G. In vitro and ex vivo antihydroxyl radical activity of green and roasted coffee. J Agric F. Chem. 2004 Mar 24;52(6):1700-4. PubMed
* 7
* 8. Borrelli RC, Visconti A, Mennella C, Anese M, Fogliano V. Chemical characterization and antioxidant properties of coffee melanoidins. J Agric F. Chem. 2002 Oct 23;50(22):6527-33. PubMed
* 9
* 10. Smith B, Wingard DL, Smith TC, Kritz-Silverstein D, Barrett-Connor E. Does coffee consumption reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes in individuals with impaired glucose? Diabetes Care. 2006 Nov;29(11):2385-90. PubMed
* 11
* 12. Hu G, Bidel S, Jousilahti P, Antikainen R, Tuomilehto J. Coffee and tea consumption and the risk of Parkinson’s disease. Mov Disord. 2007 Aug 21. PubMed
* 13
* 14. Klatsky AL, Morton C, Udaltsova N, Friedman GD. Coffee, cirrhosis, and transaminase enzymes. Arch Intern Med. 2006 Jun 12;166(11):1190-5. PubMed
* 15
* 16. Leitzmann MF, Willett WC, Rimm EB, Stampfer MJ, Spiegelman D, Colditz GA, Giovannucci E. A prospective study of coffee consumption and the risk of symptomatic gallstone disease in men. JAMA. 1999 Jun 9;281(22):2106-12. PubMed
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* 18. Shuster J, Finlayson B, Scheaffer RL, Sierakowski R, Zoltek J, Dzegede S. Primary liquid intake and urinary stone disease. J Chronic Dis. 1985;38(11):907-14. PubMed
* 19
* 22. Philip P, Taillard J, Moore N, Delord S, Valtat C, Sagaspe P, Bioulac B. The effects of coffee and napping on nighttime highway driving: a randomized trial. Ann Intern Med. 2006 Jun 6;144(11):785-91. PubMed
* 23
* 24. Sofi F, Conti AA, Gori AM, Eliana Luisi ML, Casini A, Abbate R, Gensini GF. Coffee consumption and risk of coronary heart disease: a meta-analysis. Nutr Metab Cardiovasc Dis. 2007 Mar;17(3):209-23. Epub 2006 Dec 5. PubMed
* 25
* 26. Urgert R, Essed N, van der Weg G, Kosmeijer-Schuil TG, Katan MB. Separate effects of the coffee diterpenes cafestol and kahweol on serum lipids and liver aminotransferases. Am J Clin Nutr. 1997 Feb;65(2):519-24. PubMed
* 27
* 28. Strandhagen E, Landaas S, Thelle DS. Folic acid supplement decreases the homocysteine increasing effect of filtered coffee. A randomised placebo-controlled study. Eur J Clin Nutr. 2003 Nov;57(11):1411-7. PubMed
* 29
* 30. Urgert R, Weusten-van der Wouw MP, Hovenier R, Lund-Larsen PG, Katan MB. Chronic consumers of boiled coffee have elevated serum levels of lipoprotein(a). J Intern Med. 1996 Dec;240(6):367-71. PubMed
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* 35. Winkelmayer WC, Stampfer MJ, Willett WC, Curhan GC. Habitual caffeine intake and the risk of hypertension in women. JAMA. 2005 Nov 9;294(18):2330-5. PubMed
* 36
* 37. Hallstrom H, Wolk A, Glynn A, Michaelsson K. Coffee, tea and caffeine consumption in relation to osteoporotic fracture risk in a cohort of Swedish women. Osteoporos Int. 2006;17(7):1055-64. Epub 2006 May 4. PubMed
* 38
* 39. Barranco Quintana JL, Allam MF, Serrano Del Castillo A, Ferna’ndez-Crehuet Navajas R. Alzheimer’s disease and coffee: a quantitative review. Neurol Res. 2007 Jan;29(1):91-5. PubMed
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