Is Coffee Bad For You?

By david / August 31, 2010

In order to answer the question of whether coffee is bad for you, we need to take into consideration a few factors.

Coffee and Homocysteine Levels –

Some Studies have shown that drinking coffee can elevate homocysteine and cholesterol levels in the blood. These factors may promote heart disease. Health practitioner run a large range in their opinions about this. Some say a single cup can cause an elevation of homocysteine. I also believe this is likely to be true.

When you look at the high incidence of heart disease, you have to wonder what factor or collection of factors cause this problem. Is coffee part of this equation? Is it a bigger or smaller part than studies reveal? Finally, who has the definitive answer? Likely no one can tell you definitively. There will always be contradictory studies. Therefore, we have to make an education decision about the facts and what they could mean for ourselves, ultimately.

Diabetes and Coffee

Some studies suggest that drinking coffee can help you to avoid diabetes. However, other studies seem to indicate that if someone already has Type 2 Diabetes, coffee may cause a spike in blood sugar. This would be undesirable. Here again, what is the truth? Conflicting studies only underscore the need to do even more studies.

However, my mantra is to err on the side of caution! Why take any chances.

It actually only makes sense as coffee is a stimulant that taps into your ‘flight or fight’ response and this should cause a resultant need for more sugar (energy) in your body and available to power through ‘flight or fight’.

Coffee As a Stimulant

When you utilize a stimulant, you are essential creating a stressor on your body. Blood pressure can rise, heart beats faster, eyes dilate, and you become energized. This is the same as invoking the ‘flight or fight’ response. Or, in other words, you create a stressful situation artificially. The coffee is the catalyst for this stress induction. But many never stop to consider this.

To further underscore this point, here is a study from Duke. The researchers practically suggest that any ‘high stress’ person would benefit from removing caffeine from their diet.

Again, from a ‘common sense’ approach, it only makes sense that these potential problems would rise from a stimulant like caffeine.

Won’t Quit Coffee? Try Green Tea …

One suggestion is to switch to green tea which has significantly less caffeine than an equivalently sized cup of coffee. In addition, there are believed to be many helpful phytochemicals and antioxidants in tea. Ok, there are antioxidents in coffee too. However, many thoughtful health professionals have discussed the switch to tea over coffee and the potential benefits.

Coffee and Loss of Memory

Some research (and those who like to interpret these things) suggests that coffee may lead to short term memory loss.

I honestly believe I have experienced this on a few occasions. When not drinking coffee, I notice that I do not normally have this problem.

Some also believe that coffee promotes irritability and even aggression or angry outbursts.

Of course, not all scientists or doctors agree on these points. I am just letting you know what some are saying. You will want to do your own research and draw your own conclusions!

None of the above is an attempt to make a definitive statement in one direction or the other. Instead, this is about raising a question or questions about coffee.

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