International Coffee DayOctober 1, 2018
As a newly proclaimed “coffee drinker”, I jumped at the chance to do a little research on the delicious beverage in honour of International Coffee Day!
With two kids under the age of three, one of which still wakes multiple times a night, I’ve turned to coffee as my go-to energy boosting beverage. When I first started drinking coffee it was only occasionally, and it was as a treat; mostly in the form of creamy, sweet lattes, mochas and cappuccinos. Once I started to consume coffee more regularly, I started to notice its impact on both my wallet and my waistline.
Strip away the milk and cream (especially those that are artificial), the sugars and artificial sweeteners, and you’re actually left with a zero fat, zero carb and antioxidant rich drink with significant health benefits.
Many studies have linked coffee and caffeine to a longer lifespan and decreased risk of developing cardiovascular disease, diabetes, cancer, liver disease, depression, Alzheimer’s disease, and other forms of dementia and cognitive decline.
- Boosts metabolism
- This includes burning fat (caffeine is found in many weight loss supplements!), with effects lasting up to 3 hours after consumption
- Enhances athletic performance
- When consumed 30-60 minutes before exercise, caffeine has been shown to improve overall performance (endurance, greater power output, resistance to fatigue, focus and even reducing post workout muscle pain)
- This effect may be diminished with regular coffee consumption, one study suggested decreasing coffee consumption leading up to an athletic event to increase potential effect of caffeine on performance
DISCLAIMER: To reap the aforementioned benefits of coffee it must be consumed without the addition of dairy or non-dairy creamers, sugar, sweeteners etc.
Put off by the idea of drinking black coffee?
Here are some suggestions to modify the effects and flavour of your brew without compromising the benefits!
- Add healthy fats
- Grass fed (this is key) butter, coconut oil or MCT oil, blended with coffee turns it into a creamy, latte like drink that not only tastes delicious but can also act as a meal replacement
- Fats will bind to the caffeine slowing its absorption into the bloodstream for a steady, longer lasting energy boost without the typical caffeine crash (also prevents the caffeine jitters!)
- Healthy fats are also a great source of fat-soluble vitamins (A, D, E, K), anti-inflammatory essential fatty acids (your omega 3s and such) and can serve as an alternate fuel source (those of you who are familiar with the Ketogenic diet know all about this!)
- Add protein in the form of collagen peptides and/or gelatin powder
- This won’t change the taste of your coffee but will add another element of nutrition (great for hair, nails, skin and joints)
- Spices can be added directly into your cup, or added to your fresh coffee grounds before brewing
- Turmeric – antioxidant, anti-inflammatory
- Cinnamon – satisfies your sweet tooth while actually helping to balance blood sugar instead of spiking it; has also been shown to lower blood pressure
- Cardamom – calms the gut, also naturally sweet in flavor
- Pumpkin spice – ginger (digestion), cinnamon, and nutmeg (a natural breath freshener!)
- Natural vanilla or almond extract also gives illusion of sweetness
- Maca root powder
- An adaptogenic superfood that enhances our ability to tolerate stress and also increases energy on its own
The Internet is full of delicious coffee recipes to make your daily cup healthier but just as enjoyable.
Here are a couple of links to make your own delicious “Butter Coffee”:
Or, try adding this delicious homemade coffee creamer to your cup o’ joe.
As caffeine is a stimulant, it of course comes with its own set of warnings. It may have a positive effect on one individual and a complete opposite or have negative side effects on another. Consult with your physician if you’re unsure if caffeine is right for you. High blood pressure, pregnancy and anxiety are examples of some conditions that may contraindicate coffee consumption.
Otherwise, next time you sign up for a One Academy signature class like Warrior or Everest, come in early and enjoy a cup of Pilot Coffee Co fresh ground Academy blend! For best results, consume a minimum of 30 minutes before your workout. Enjoy the company and check out some of the merchandise or books on display while you savour your delicious treat!
Feel free to comment with any questions or concerns, or other interesting caffeine-related information, and let us know what other nutrition topics you’d like to see featured on the One Academy blog!
Chelsea R. (Holistic Nutrition, current study)
On Facebook: Chelsea Lynne Ranger