When you think of morning beverages, what comes to mind? Probably coffee. Coffee is the most consumed morning beverage across the nation – yet, people only think to drink it due to either its taste or the fact that it has caffeine in it and can help wake them up on their way to work. What people fail to realize is that there are other benefits to come along with your favorite cup of Joe. To help you get a better understanding of exactly how you can benefit, I’m going to go over some benefits of coffee for health and fitness. As if you needed another reason to drink a cup of coffee, right?
A Strong Cup
When it comes down to it, coffee is actually the world’s most popular beverage. Its reach seems endless due to its popularity. Yet, everyone consumes their coffee differently. Some prefer black, others with a creamer of some sort, and some prefer to add sugar or various sugar substitutes. Regardless of how you prefer your cup, the benefits of coffee are still apparent.
It should be noted, however, that consuming coffee with sugar or other sugar-filled creamers, etc. can cause you to not only gain weight but if you are sensitive to stimulants, it could cause some health risks. You should always talk to your doctor about your nutrition and make sure you are healthy enough to consume anything that contains stimulants, even on the lower end such as with a cup of coffee.
One of the things that makes coffee so powerful (from a health standpoint) is that coffee is loaded with helpful antioxidants. The role of antioxidants is to prevent free radical damage in the body. When free radicals in the body morph, alter, or destroy cells (even down to the DNA), it can create many health problems which can include diseases such as cancer. That’s not to say that coffee can single-handedly prevent cancer, but it can play a role in helping to lower the risk thanks to the help from antioxidants.
Benefits of Coffee for Health and Fitness
As mentioned earlier, coffee serves many purposes that cover a broad spectrum. You can find it helps with cognition, weight loss, energy production, and many other benefits. Below you will find some amazing benefits and research associated with coffee for health and fitness.
1. Increase Energy and Performance
Caffeine. We’ve all seemingly come to love what it can do for us – especially when we are tired and exhausted. For some, a cup of coffee makes the perfect pre-workout and allows them to achieve a nice steady stream of energy without some of the added ingredients commonly found in pre-workouts that can cause you to feel tingly, shaky, or anxious.
When you consume a beverage such as coffee which contains caffeine, you can improve your exercise performance by as much as 11.2%. Additionally, caffeine can help reduce your overall ratings of perceived exertion (RPE) during exercise and can allow you to push yourself harder in the gym and during training.
2. Enhance Fat-Burning
When you look at various thermogenics and fat burners on the market, just about every single one contains caffeine. Why? Because it works! Some research has shown that coffee for health and fitness reasons can boost fat-burning by as much as 11%. Then you have other studies that show depending on how lean you are, you can increase fat-burning by as much as 29%.
Obviously, when you are able to burn fat at a higher rate, you can achieve a leaner physique and drop stubborn body fat. That can not only help you from a performance standpoint but also help decrease your risk of health concerns.
3. Improve Brain Functioning
Another great benefit of coffee for health and fitness reasons is the improvement in terms of brain function. There are many studies out there that show coffee has the ability to improve your mental function, mood, memory, and reaction time.
This makes coffee an amazing beverage not only in the morning but any time of day where you need a mental boost to help you stay productive and break through any mental barriers that could be crushing your creativity. A good strong cup of coffee can help you finish off a day strong.
An additional benefit for the brain when it comes to coffee for health and fitness is that research has shown that coffee drinkers actually have up to a 65% lower risk of getting Alzheimer’s disease which can help also lower your risk of dementia.
4. Live a Longer Life
No, I’m not making this up… If you drink coffee, you have a much better chance of living a longer life when compared to those who do not drink coffee. Researches conducted studies and found that men who drank coffee reduced their risk of death by as much as 20% while women were able to reduce their risk of death by up to 26%. Just goes to show, coffee for health and fitness could be the magic potion you were looking for.
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6. Lopez-Garcia, E., et al. (2008). The relationship of coffee consumption with mortality. Annuals of Internal Medicine. 148(12), 904-14.