8 Ways to Make Coffee Healthy
Drinking coffee can sometimes be good for your health. Caffeine can help boost physical performance, enhance concentration and may even help burn fat.
However, coffee can also have some unwanted side effects, especially when you drink it in excessive amounts. Some of the known risks include increased heart rate, breathlessness, upset stomach, nausea and trouble falling asleep.
If you want to enjoy your caffeine fix while making it healthy, read on! We’ll share some tips on how you can make the most of every cup without feeling regrets.
The Best Tips for Enjoying Healthy Coffee
From improving brain health to helping out heart function, coffee can provide a long list of health benefits. To capitalize on these perks, keep the following tips in mind.
1. Choose Healthier Coffee
Not all coffees are created the same. Spend time doing your research to differentiate one from the other, especially in terms of how good one is for your health.
For example, you might want to load up your pantry with mushroom coffee. Mushrooms can help improve sleep, reduce stress, increase energy levels, soothe muscles and support the immune system.
Look for a high-quality brand of coffee, preferably organic. Synthetic pesticides and other chemicals are often used in growing coffee beans, and those can put your health at risk. By buying organic, you can have a little more peace of mind.
2. Pick the Right Brewing Method
There is a lot of debate about the best way to brew coffee. If you want your caffeine fix to be healthier, however, a good option is one that uses a paper filter. Hence, in comparing French press vs pour-over, pour-over wins for the healthy caffeine fix.
One of the benefits of using pour-over as the brewing method of choice is that the resulting coffee will have less cafestol. This is a compound that could negatively impact cholesterol. Plus, it contains fewer of the acidic components that can cause digestive discomfort.
3. Choose the Right Roast
Your choice of roast is another factor that impacts the health benefits of coffee. Roasting the beans will create a deeper flavor. However, the more it is exposed to heat, the higher the chance that health compounds like polyphenols and antioxidants will break down.
If you want to enjoy coffee with higher antioxidants, opt for a light roast. Regardless of the roast, make sure that you do not go above the recommended daily caffeine intake.
4. Switch to Natural Sweeteners
Many of us are probably guilty of adding sweeteners to our coffee. It is fine to enjoy it black, but a lot of us crave a sweet flavor which is why we find ourselves adding sugar. However, many commercial sugars have a high amount of fructose. Limiting your fructose intake can promote better metabolic and blood sugar health.
For those who have a sweet tooth, you might want to experiment with natural sweeteners and find one that makes your taste buds happy, such as honey or agave nectar.
5. Ditch the Creamer
It is not just the sweetener that you should get rid of if you want to make your coffee a healthier drink. The creamer can also be the culprit for the risks associated with your caffeine fix. Many commercial creamers are loaded with artificial, highly processed and questionable ingredients.
Instead of an artificial creamer, why not add full-fat cream from a grass-fed cow instead? It is a great calcium source that can help strengthen and support your bones. It also contains vitamin K, which is another helpful vitamin for improving bone health.
6. Add Coconut Oil
While there are many ways to elevate the flavor of your coffee, one thing that you cannot go wrong with is coconut oil. However, it can significantly alter the flavor and can be overwhelming, so start small. It is best to not add more than one tablespoon if you want to preserve the natural taste of your cup of joe.
Adding coconut oil to coffee is especially popular for people who follow a low-carb and high-fat diet. It can help in achieving ketosis, a state in which the body burns fat instead of glucose for fuel. It also has medium-chain triglycerides (MCT,) which are believed to be effective in improving energy levels, speeding up metabolism and helping to maintain healthy cholesterol levels already within the normal range.
7. Flavor it with Turmeric
Looking for an unusual but great way to elevate the flavor of your caffeine fix? Consider adding turmeric and your taste buds are in for a treat. Also known as golden spice, turmeric will add a gold hue to your coffee giving it a unique flavor twist.
Turmeric is also associated with several health benefits like joint and cardiovascular support. The primary beneficial component of turmeric, curcumin, can be difficult for the body to absorb. A quick fix to this is to add black pepper, which has piperine, a compound that can improve turmeric absorption. If you’re looking for the health benefits that are associated with turmeric and black pepper without actually adding these spices to your coffee, you can also include a combo supplement during breakfast.
8. Enjoy Coffee in Moderation
Lastly, it’s best to enjoy coffee in moderation. According to the Food and Drug Administration, caffeine can be part of a healthy diet. For a healthy adult, the maximum recommended caffeine intake is 400 milligrams daily, which is equal to four to five cups of coffee. Exceeding this amount can trigger restlessness, feelings of anxiousness, nausea and more.
Get a Healthy Start to Your Day
You can make coffee healthier by picking the right roast, choosing the right ingredients, going for a healthier brewing process and enjoying the beverage in moderation.
Lydia Nash is a resident writer of Caffe Streets. She's passionate about brews, and she even took a barista course to experience it professionally. When she's not writing, you can find her in her garden talking to her daisies.