The Health Benefits of Your Morning Cup of Joe

You know what coffee does for you on a regular basis: helps you wake up in the morning, keeps you working through the midday crunch, revives you after a long day at work. But most people don’t know about the positive affects of coffee drinking in the long run. The health benefits of drinking three or more cups of coffee a day have long been examined by researchers, and their findings may have you reaching for it more often (like you needed another excuse to up your caffeine intake!)

Prevents some diseases

Research has found that people who drink coffee daily are less likely to develop heart disease, type II diabetes, liver disease and cancer. Studies have also linked coffee to a lower susceptibility to cognitive diseases such as Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s and Dementia. The idea is that the caffeine in coffee keeps the mind active and protects it from decline.

Rich in antioxidants

You’ve probably heard of them, and know they’re good for you, but exactly what they do…most people aren’t sure. Antioxidants are found in some vegetables and fruit, and help remove free radicals from the bloodstream and prevent issues with your heart and immune system.

In short, antioxidants do your body a world of good- and coffee is full of them. In fact, Americans get nearly their entire dietary supply of antioxidants from coffee alone.

Speeds metabolic function

The extra jolt of energy you get from that midday cup can help kick start your metabolism, increasing your ability to burn fat. Without adding any extra cream or sugar, coffee can be a miraculously low-calorie way to power up and lose some pesky pounds. As we get older, our metabolisms slow drastically, so coffee intake can often be a preventative measure to avoid the weight gain and fatigue inevitable with aging.

Tackles depression

The caffeine in coffee coupled with its antioxidant-rich nature can help relieve some of the symptoms of depression, studies have found. Caffeine can also play a role in reducing stress in some people. People who drink more coffee find that they are often more alert and productive, leading to fewer stressful situations.

Prolongs life

All of these things combined point to a healthier, happier life. Coffee gives the body essential nutrients that help protect against illnesses like diabetes and liver disease, while caffeine speeds up the metabolism and antioxidants help keep those with depression out of the dark. Couple this with the fact that drinking coffee is often a social activity- a way to bond with your partner as you get ready for work or a way to unwind with friends after dinner- and you have a recipe for a social, healthy, and prolonged, life. So go ahead, sip away at that cup of java guilt-free.