Coffee: Comfort, Necessity, Drug or Vitamin?
By Tyler Woodward
- Coffee A Drug Or Vitamin?
- The Benefits of Coffee
Coffee A Drug Or Vitamin?:
Coffee is a lot of different things to a lot of different people. To some it's a warm glass of morning comfort, a cool iced refreshing pick-me-up, a rewarding splurge. While we often use coffee and caffeine interchangeably, coffee is far more than just caffeine and can do very beneficial things for your health and body.
Before we jump into all the details on coffee, one thing must be made clear: not all coffee is created equal. Depending on the source, how it’s grown, the roasting process, and packaging, a whole spectrum of things could change about the coffee you are consuming. With zuBrew, we’ve been very careful to ensure that everything about our coffee is done right.
In a single scoop of zuBrew you get:
- Purcaf Organic Caffeine - Made from ethically sourced green coffee beans
- Lion’s Mane Mushroom Extract - For increased cognitive function
- MCT Oil - For an additional energy boost
- Dynamine - So it’s the only cup of coffee you need all day long
We all know that caffeine is a stimulant, but coffee is a lot more than just caffeine. And it’s no secret that caffeine by itself is considered a drug, but coffee in its entirety may be closer to a vitamin.
A drug is defined as a medicine or other substance which has a physiological effect when ingested or otherwise introduced into the body. A vitamin on the other hand can be defined as substances that a “lack of which causes a specific disease, or group of diseases”. We cannot synthesize vitamins ourselves, so we have to get them in our diet. If we don’t consume enough of any given vitamin over time we will become deficient in it which will prevent our body from functioning properly, potentially leading to disease over time.
Learn More: Coffee: To Drink Or Not To Drink?
Believe it or not, vitamins in many ways have drug-like effects. According to Dr. Ray Peat, “Any of the essential nutrients (vitamins and minerals), if used in isolation, can be used as a drug, for a specific effect on the organism that it wouldn’t normally have when eaten as a component of ordinary food.”
While there’s no such thing as a “coffee deficiency”, this doesn’t mean that you can’t experience vast, vitamin-like health benefits from your daily cup of joe.
In fact the frequent consumption of coffee of about 3-4 cups daily, has been associated with:
- Protecting the liver from NAFLD, cirrhosis and fibrosis †
- Reducing the likelihood of developing various types of cancer including:
- Liver Cancer †
- Prostate Cancer †
- Melanoma †
- Leukemia †
- Oral Cancer †
- Non-melanoma Skin Cancer †
- Endometrial Cancer †
- Protecting Against Neurological Diseases including:
- Reduce the chances of developing type II diabetes (1, 2) †
- Associated with a lower all-cause mortality (1, 2, 3)
But the benefits don’t end there…
The Benefits of Coffee:
1. Coffee as a Mineral Source - Coffee is packed with minerals including magnesium, zinc, calcium, phosphorus, iron, copper, silicon, sodium, and potassium. Per liter of coffee, which equates to about 4 cups of coffee you will consume about:
Some of these minerals, to include magnesium, are difficult to consume elsewhere in your diet. Magnesium is responsible for regulating over 300 enzymes in your body and is associated with over 1,600 proteins. Most importantly, magnesium is necessary to create ATP, the cellular currency of energy, as Mg-ATP (magnesium-ATP the form of ATP used in our cells). Without ATP, there is no energy.
2. Coffee is Packed with Antioxidants - Coffee has potent antioxidant qualities. Compounds to include the following pack and antioxidant punch:
- Chlorogenic, ferulic, caffeic, & n-coumaric acids
- Melanoidins & phenylalanines
Antioxidants help the body combat oxidative stress. Oxidative stress, also known as inflammation, occurs when compounds release free radicals that “attack” nearby molecules. Antioxidants act to round up and neutralize these free radicals preventing them from causing oxidative stress.
3. Coffee Improves Digestion - Coffee gets things moving, to include your digestive system. Coffee helps mitigate chronic constipation aiding the wave-like movement of the digestive tract known as peristalsis. Coffee also stimulates the production of stomach acid, which is necessary to break down food for digestion. According to Jonathan W. Wright M.D., author of Why Stomach Acid Is Good For You, low stomach acid can lead to a host of digestive issues. Low stomach acid allows for bacteria to grow in the small intestine and the stomach, resulting in small intestinal bacterial overgrowth.
4. Coffee Boosts Metabolism - Coffee may not give you wings, but it sure turns up the heat on your metabolism. Consistent consumption of coffee can lead to the inhibition of the release of glucocorticoids (stress hormones like cortisol and adrenaline), improved management of insulin sensitivity, increased activity of thyroid hormones, and the blocking of adenosine receptors in your brain. All of these benefits account for improved metabolic and thyroid functioning as well as boosted energy levels! Given the rev coffee gives you, it’s a good idea to limit your caffeine intake to the morning - early afternoon. The half-life of caffeine is 8 hours, so it’s a good rule of thumb to not consume coffee within 8 hours of going to sleep.
So whether coffee is a comfort, necessity, or stimulant in your life, you can rest easy knowing it comes with some pretty awesome health benefits. Let’s set the negative stigma of coffee as a drug aside and start seeing it through the lense of a fun, healthy, enjoyable part of a balanced lifestyle.
Looking for a great coffee to try? Zubrew is your one-stop shop for your daily coffee fix. For $1.28/day you get one potent blend of caffeine, MCT oil, and adaptogenic mushrooms that’s guaranteed to keep supercharged all day long. Click here to shop zuBrew today!
My goal in writing this article, as always, is to provide you with logically-based principles that you can use to form your own conclusions regarding any information you may come across within this subject. I really hope you found this article interesting and if you have anything to add to this article, or any comments or criticism, feel free to reach out to me on our facebook groups or on Instagram @tylerwoodward_fit. Also, please feel free to share this article with anyone that might be interested.