The One Drink For A Faster Metabolism
By Kevin DiDonato MS, CSCS, CES
You may wake up a few minutes early and make a cup of this in the morning.
Or you may just wait for your morning commute and stop at your favorite bistro or coffee shop.
No matter where you get it, coffee has been shown to be a great way to start your day – not only mentally but physiologically as well!
However, due to common misconceptions about coffee's health benefits, many people may turn to other caffeinated alternatives – such as energy drinks, diet soda, or soda – in order to start their day off on the right foot.
By doing this, however, they may be putting themselves – and their health – at a greater risk for disaster.
Coffee vs. Soda
Stand a cup of coffee and a bottle of soda (diet or regular) side by side and you would think they would do the same things for your body.
However, you would be DEAD wrong on this assumption!
Soda - which contains tons of added sugar, plus preservatives, natural colorings, and other additives – has been linked to many different health ailments.
Besides the extra weight gain associated with drinking soda, there are other side effects that may alter the health of your insides.
And the list includes:
• Increased risk for diabetes
• Problems with your vascular system (blood vessels)
• Heart attacks
• Dental issues (tooth decay, cavities, etc.)
• Kidney stones (too much potassium)
Now, you would be thinking that diet soda would be a better alternative…
But, again, you would be wrong!
Although diet soda is calorie-free (due to the artificial sweeteners), there are still plenty of additives that may be bad for your health
And, diet soda has been linked to increased cravings for sugary foods, increased weight gain, and an increased risk for different types of cancers, possibly due to the artificial sweeteners it contains.
Now, let’s compare them to coffee, shall we?
Coffee, in its purest form (free of sugar, cream, creamers, or other additives) is low in calories, high in antioxidants (yes, the beans have TON of health-benefiting antioxidants!), and may be essentially fat –free.
Now, you may be asking what else it does…
The Health Benefits of Coffee
Prior to current times, coffee was deemed a drink that only stimulated your body and mind - for a certain period of time – only to create a crash afterwards.
However, leap forward to today, and researchers have shed new light on coffee and the other wonderful benefits it may hold for your health.
For example, it was long held that caffeine in coffee would increase your blood pressure, which could potentially lead to heart disease.
Today, it’s been shown that this may not entirely be true!
In fact, a study on older patients with high blood pressure showed that caffeinated coffee consumption was associated with a lower risk for dying from coronary artery disease.
When they looked at coffee consumption and heart attacks, they showed that one to two cups per day showed no increase or decrease in risk for heart attacks in BOTH men and women.
Now, three or more cups per day showed a SLIGHT increase in risk for men, but not for women!
Diabetes, which is a rampant disease due to the rise in overweight and obese populations, may also be positively affected by coffee consumption.
One simple explanation is that coffee contains caffeine.
And caffeine may boost your metabolism, therefore increasing your body’s ability to process sugar from your blood and other areas of your body, therefore stabilizing your blood sugar more effectively.
Another explanation may be the minerals and antioxidants found in coffee that have been shown to boost insulin sensitivity, therefore improving your ability to process sugar in your body.
Here’s to Your Cup of Joe
Although most people use coffee as a way to wake them in the morning, prepare them mentally for the day, and provide them with some caffeine for alertness, there are many people that use the alternatives (energy drinks, soda, and diet soda) to do just that.
Energy drinks and soda may be filled with harmful chemicals and additives that could be bad for your overall health.
Plus, too much added sugar, which may lead to weight gain and other complications!
Now that you are armed with more information on the health benefits of coffee, you may be able to make a more informed choice when it comes to the drink you choose in the morning to start your day off right!
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Salazar-Martinez E, Willet WC, Ascherios A, Manson JE, Leirzmann MF, Stampfer MJ, Hu FB. Coffee consumption and risk for type 2 diabetes mellitus. Ann Intern Med 2004 Jan6;140(1):1-8.
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Lopez-Garcia E, van Dam RM, Willett WC, Rimm EB, Manson JE, Stampfer MJ, Rexrode KM, Hu FB. Coffee consumption and coronary heart disease in men and women: a prospective cohort study. Circulation. 2006 may2;113(17)2045-2053.
Greenberg JA, Chow G, Ziegelstein RC. Caffeinated coffee consumption, cardiovascular disease, and heart valve disease in the elderly (from the Framingham Study). Am J Cardiol. 2008 Dec 1;102(11):1502-8.
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