10 Proven Health Benefits of Coffee

Last updated March 1st, 2021

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There are plenty of health benefits of coffee that you probably don’t know about.

Funny coffee photo

Did you know that over 400 billion cups of coffee are consumed each year?

Coffee, often referred to as liquid gold, is actually the second most traded commodity in the world behind oil.

Aside from being so delicious, there are tons of health benefits of coffee.

There are all sorts of antioxidants and nutrients in coffee that support health and wellness.

It also lowers the chances of developing certain diseases.  The following are the proven health benefits of coffee (as if you needed another reason to add it to your life!).

Make sure when buying coffee that you always buy organic coffee, when possible.  Not only are the beans better quality, but they are usually fair-trade certified and often come from family-owned farms.

1. Coffee can make you smarter by enhancing the firing of neurons in the brain.

Whenever caffeine is consumed, it blocks a specific inhibitory neurotransmitter called adenosine.

By blocking this bad boy, you will actually increase the firing of dopamine and norepinephrine, causing a mental surge of brainpower and increased neuron firing.

Coffee has also been shown to improve various brain functions including mood, energy levels, reaction time, memory, and general cognitive function. (1, 2)

2. Coffee can help you burn fat.

#2 on the list of health benefits of coffee is for anyone looking to lose a few pounds!  If you’re buying any fat-burning supplement anytime soon, there’s a good chance that caffeine is one of the main ingredients.  

Caffeine has been shown to boost metabolism by 3-11% and dramatically increase fat-burning potential.

Other studies have even shown that the rate of fat being burned while drinking caffeine can improve by 10% in obese individuals and by 29% in lean individuals.

In other words, caffeine is a great way to burn some extra calories from the body (3, 4).

3. Coffee contains incredible amounts of antioxidants that help fight aging.

Coffee Beans

Most people know about antioxidants and their powerful effect on free radicals, but for those who don’t, here’s why this matters.

Free radicals are molecules that are missing electrons and cause havoc to the body in search of them (causes premature aging and many diseases).

Coffee is full of antioxidants that fight these free radicals.  In fact, scientists have identified approximately 1,000 different antioxidants in coffee beans! (5)

4. Coffee drinkers have a lower risk of cancer.

Coffee specifically fights against 2 types of cancer: liver cancer and rectal cancer.

Liver cancer is more prevalent than most may think, being the third leading cancer causing death in the world.

Astonishingly, coffee has actually shown to lower the chances of getting liver cancer by up to 40%!

Also, a study with over 400,000 members showed that people who consumed coffee had a lowered risk of rectal cancer by 15%. (6, 7, 8)

5. Coffee drinkers tend to live longer than non-coffee drinkers.

Coffee photo - health benefits of coffee

Having shown that coffee lowers the risk of certain diseases and provides valuable antioxidants, it’s really no surprise that coffee has been shown to help you live longer as well.

In a massive study, female coffee drinkers were shown to be at a lower risk of death by 26% while their male counterparts had a lowered chance by 20%.  

It also seems to have a very positive effect on diabetics, who had a 30% lower risk of death than non-coffee drinkers (9).

6. Coffee contains many essential nutrients your body needs to thrive.

One cup of coffee contains important nutrients like riboflavin, potassium, magnesium, niacin, pantothenic acid, and others.

If you are on a detox or are considering one, this is just another reason to drink more.

While the volume of the nutrients it contains will not blow you away, if you drink 3 cups like the average American adult, you will be getting a steady source of vital nutrients for your body (10).

7. Coffee can help fight depression and can make you happier.

Coffee photo

Most people are unaware of the fact that over 17.5 million people (just in America alone) suffer from some form of depression, and it’s growing every year.

Coffee has been shown to lower the risk of depression by 20% for women who drink 4 or more cups a day.

It has also been shown that those who drink 4 cups a day are 53% less likely to commit suicide than those who don’t.

While coffee is certainly not the cure for depression, it appears to be very helpful for suffering individuals (11).

8. Coffee causes dramatic improvements when taken before exercise.

Caffeine has been proven to be one of the most effective supplements ever for improving exercise performance.

Drinking coffee will cause a spike in adrenaline and causes an increase in performance by around 11-12%.  

If you’re looking for a good exercise routine, check out our yoga workout for weight loss. 

Combine this with the fact that drinking a cup before you workout will cause free fatty acids to release in the bloodstream and become available as a source of fuel. Coffee makes for an incredible pre-workout drink.

You should drink your coffee about 20-30 minutes before heading to the gym for optimal performance. (12, 13)

9. Coffee lowers the risk for type II diabetes and Parkinson’s disease.

Coffee photo

Type II diabetes now affects over 300 million people worldwide and is becoming a global problem.

Heavy coffee drinkers, however, have a 23 – 67% reduction in risk of developing the disease.

It has even been shown that every cup you drink is associated with a 7% mitigation of risk.

While significantly fewer people have Parkinson’s disease (10 million worldwide), drinking coffee results in a 32-60% reduction in risk for developing it (1415, 16).

10. Coffee is good for the heart.

1 in every 4 deaths in the world is associated with some form of heart disease.  This growing epidemic is plaguing society and has probably already effected a family member you know.

Coffee has been shown that drinking 2 cups of coffee per day can reduce the risk of heart failure by 11% (17).

This makes coffee good for your heart, body, brain, and mind.

What’s the best time of day to drink it?

Drinking coffee creates a spike in your stressor hormone, cortisol, so it’s important to drink it at the right times of the day.

There are two times a day when you should consider drinking coffee to have the maximum benefit.

The first is around 1 hour after you wake up, because your cortisol is already elevated in the mornings so it won’t cause any unnecessary stress to your body.

The second is right before your workout because this will give you a boost in performance and aid weight loss efforts.

How can I combat the acidity of coffee?

A big complaint about coffee is its acidic nature and the potential long-term effects it can have on your internal health.

While that statement is unproven, you can combat this by adding in an alkalized food that will help offset the acidic nature of coffee or even drinking coffee that is low in acid.

Foods like unsweetened almond milk and unsweetened coconut milk are alkalized and will help with this problem.  Plus, they add some flavor to your coffee.

What’s the biggest mistake people make when drinking coffee?

Most of the items they serve at Starbucks and local coffee shops turn a healthy drink into a calorie nightmare.

Coffee is not supposed to taste like a milkshake.  

There are subtle hints and flavors of each bean that can be appreciated.  The biggest mistake people make is adding sugars, sweeteners, creams, and flavoring to their coffee.

You want to focus on drinking an organic coffee blend and drinking it as black as possible.

Should I use a Keurig?

No, and here’s why.

Not only has the plastic been deemed unsafe and contains estrogenic activity, but the packets they use are also not recyclable and damaging to our planet.  On top of that, the lid is made of polyethylene coated foil, which is basically the same as aluminum foil, which has been connected to anxiety, depression, Alzheimer’s disease, autism, and celiac disease.

No thanks.

Instead, a drip coffee maker with organic coffee beans would be a MUCH healthier choice.

How much per day is okay?

This depends on the person, but 2 a day is fine, 3 a day is good, and 4 a day should be the absolute max.

The health benefits of coffee will take a downturn after the 4-cup mark.

Note: Switch to decaf if higher caffeine levels don’t work for you.

If you liked this article on the health benefits of coffee and are ready to build some long-term healthy eating habits, our 21-Day Fat Loss Challenge is the best place to start!

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Leave a comment below if you enjoyed this article on the proven health benefits of coffee or have any questions!

Cathy Dean

Hey y’all. My name is Cathy, a former junk-food loving carb-aholic turned nutrition and fitness enthusiast. Here at Avocadu, we believe that a nutrient-rich diet is EVERYTHING when it comes to your health and well-being. Our motto is “Healthy from the Inside Out”! As a Certified Keto Coach, I specialize in teaching others how to lose weight through healthy, low-carb eating.

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17 replies on “10 Proven Health Benefits of Coffee”

Eliska, is it safe to assume that you mean DAIRY milk?

We personally don’t drink dairy milk. The only real benefits that you can get from drinking milk are Vitamin D and Calcium. And while these are essential nutrients to your body, you can get them from MUCH better sources. Dairy milk is pumped with hormones and contains other ingredients that are hard for your body to process. It’s like eating chocolate every day to get your antioxidants in. Yes, good sources of chocolate do contain antioxidants and can be part of a balanced diet, BUT fruits and vegetables contain TONS more antioxidants and are much richer sources for it.

On that note, we do drink UNSWEETENED non-dairy milk such as almond, cashew, or coconut. They contain Vitamin D and generally much more calcium than milk. And yes, we do add it to our coffee sometimes. Just make sure to always buy the unsweetened version, because the regular has several grams of sugar and is NOT a good way to start your morning cup of joe.

I hope that helps!

While stevia does come from a plant, the kind that you buy in the store is highly processed. Some brands far more so than others, but it’s generally safer to avoid them if you can. We personally recommend avoiding sweeteners whenever possible. If you absolutely need some type of sweetener, then raw (unprocessed/unfiltered), organic honey is your best option. Just keep in mind that it should still be used sparingly. Hope that helps!

Hey, y’all! I’m Cathy!

I’m SO excited you’re here! I’m super passionate about nutrition, and specialize in teaching others how to lose weight through healthy, low-carb eating. Here at Avocadu, we believe in quality over quantity and that diet is EVERYTHING when it comes to your health and well-being. In short, we believe in being healthy from the inside out. Learn more

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