Are you like me and really, really tired of a new study coming out every other month which gives advise on coffee? One says it's good for you, the next says it's bad. One says one or two cups increase productivity and the next says that will cause ulcers... Well, as a devoted coffee drinker, I decided to look into the issue and find out just what "the prevailing wisdom" from our medical experts really is. Here is what I found out:
Over the past 20 years there's been approximately 19,000 studies done on the health risks and benefits of coffee. While this likely to continue, here are the current numbers regarding how much 'Joe' your body really needs.
Whether you like it doctored up or or just plain 'black', coffee-lovers only seem to remember the good stuff: the energy it gives you and the antioxidant properties. While many studies show coffee has its benefits, just how much is too much?
First the biggest question regarding coffee, how much caffeine does it really have and how much of it is O.K.? The American Dietetic Association says most healthy adults don't need more than 200 to 300 milligrams of caffeine a day -- that's two to three cups of coffee, or a two shots of espresso. Four or more can cause upset stomachs and muscle tremors in the short-term, and long-term can cause ulcers and insomnia.
If you want to get control of your caffeine, for every cup of coffee, you should drink two full glasses of water to replenish your body. If you plan to down a lot of java, cut back on the sodas, chocolates, and other caffeinated treats. Lastly, slow down. The effects of caffeine last about eight hours, so if you think it's wearing off and it's only been a couple of hours, it's probably in your imagination.
In the U.S., the average coffee drinker has three or more cups a day, but even just one is enough to give you a lift. As for me, I spent years with a coffee cup almost glued to one hand while working. In 1982 on a vacation in Hawaii I discovered Kona Coffee and fell in love with the full rich flavor and total lack of acidity. I've kept Kona (often buying it directly from Hawaii via the internet) for my personal use ever since. Unfortunately, the price ($14 a pound in '82 and over $30 for 12 ounces now) has forced me to change my coffee drinking. I still have a cup or two in the mornings but rarely drink it later in the day and almost never in the evenings or at night (that is, unless it has been transformed into that grand creation, Irish Coffee, in which case the other ingredients more then offset the effects of the caffeine).
Our elected officials really feel the need to pass more laws -just to give them something to do. In Chicago, for example, they have a law that makes it illegal to eat in an establishment that is on fire.....no, really....
Live Long and Prosper....