Brewed coffee is loaded with elements that are beneficial to your health. Ever since coffee has been consumed, it has helped millions of people by increasing alertness each morning, getting much-needed antioxidants, and being a lovely social connection platform as the better-known benefits.
Caffeine, which is present in just about all forms of coffee (except decaf of course!) works wonders for the human body when consumed responsibly. Aside from keeping people awake and focused, caffeine stimulates the nervous system, and make people feel more alert and focused.
About 11 years ago, "The Journal of Neuropsychopharmacology" presented a study involving children with ADHD and lab marsupials (yes, lab rats). The study showed that these children, with small amounts of caffeine, were able to solve a maze quicker than the rats could, showing that caffeine can help negate some of the downsides of a disorder such as ADHD. We do not recommend giving coffee to children though, even if they are finding their way through a maze!
Another recent study in Cleveland looked at data on more than 9 million people in the United Kingdom. Coffee drinking was shown to decreased a person's risk of all causes of death and researchers concluded that moderate coffee consumption can be part of a healthy diet. "The hypothesis for that is, because it has greater levels of polyphenols or the benefit, the main benefit, you get antioxidants from the coffee," said Julia Zumpano, a dietitian with the Cleveland Clinic.
Caffeine may also help people manage their weight as it can trick the body into thinking more food has been consumed than actually has. It is advised to consume enough calories and gain nutrients through healthy food and for coffee to be used more as a means of kick start of the digestive system.
All styles of coffee contain amino acids and antioxidants that can help prevent certain diseases, such as Type 2 Diabetes because it helps the body process sugar. Consuming around 3-4 cups of coffee per day has also been shown to lower the chances of certain cancers, such as liver cancer. There is also a link between regularly consuming coffee, and a 20% lower risk of stroke and heart issues, such as irregular heartbeats.
Other benefits of coffee include;
- Increase anti-oxidants, free radical fighting chemicals and polyphenols for anti-aging, good immunity, and better health
- Post-workout muscle pain reduction - 2 cups of coffee can cut post-workout muscle pain by up to 48%.
- Increase fiber - a cup of brewed coffee represents a 5-10% contribution of up to 1.8 grams of fiber of the recommended intake of 20-38 grams.
- Protect your liver - 2 or more cups of coffee each day reduces the risk of death from liver cirrhosis by 66%, specifically cirrhosis caused by non-viral hepatitis.
- Improve cholesterol levels
- Among coffee-lovers choices, researchers found that regular fresh ground coffee, as opposed to instant coffee, had the best health outcomes.
But I'm the Sensitive Type!!! Pass me a Cold Brew!
The human body requires a specific pH (acid-alkaline) level to function properly and carry out its functions such as regenerating cells, absorbing nutrients and keeping immunity in check. General bodily functioning. Consuming foods and drinks with high levels of acidity can throw the pH off balance and cause the body's alkalinity to decrease to a higher acid state. Increased body acidity can cause digestive issues and bloating, acid reflux and can even lead to an internal environment where cancer cells can thrive.
For some coffee lovers with health issues, the amount of acid in just one cup of coffee can wreak havoc on their digestive system. To avoid the sometimes high levels of acidity found in coffee brewed with hot water, cold brew coffee is a great choice. Cold brew is made by steeping an amount of ground coffee in room temperature filtered water for 12-20 hours. Kind of like a huge tea bag. Because the flavours, caffeine, and sugars are extracted using time rather than heat, the acidity ends up being much lower than its hot brewed counterpart. Studies have shown that cold brew can contain as little as 1/3 of the acid as a traditional hot brew, making it much easier on the stomach of whoever is drinking it.
Other advantages that will have you trying a cold brew, health aside, include;
- One batch of cold brew concentrate will store up to 2 weeks (undiluted) in the refrigerator
- You will get a far less bitter taste from brewing this way
- It is great for experimenting with - add hickory to get a sweeter smokey New Orleans style Cold Brew. Our secret (shhh!!!!) is to add mint leaves to the coffee grounds before adding water. Or if you are going milk free, add lemon, lime and mint for a fresh taste with lots of crushed ice.
- The cold brew concentrate can be added to hot or cool milk or water for a traditional style coffee, or used ‘on the rocks'
- It is a perfect way to integrate the amazing flavour of coffee into desserts (affogato, coffee banana cake) and cocktails (espresso martini)
- Easy to brew using a French press, specific cold brew device or even a jug
- It is actually less time consuming to prepare, you just need the 12-14 hours of waiting time!
If you are looking for the next step in experimenting with cold brew, consider a Nitro Brew. Nitro is just cold brew coffee that's infused with nitrogen gas (yes, really). The coffee is stored in a beer keg and then served on draft. The idea behind using what is essentially a beer tap to serve the coffee is that it produces a creamier, sweeter flavour. When you draw a glass of chilled nitro, you get what looks like a serving of Guinness, complete with a foamy creamy head.
True, to go down the Nitro Path, you may wish to just buy it at your favourite barrister bar (Kimberley Coffee Van at the Broome Courthouse Markets anyone??!!), but what a fantastic world we live in where things like this are on the table!
At Kimberley Coffee Company, we love the African Organic beans for cold brew as they have a natural sweetness. The Mintaka blend, developed for milk based coffees, also works a treat for cold brewing. Check out our range of organic, fairtrade beans online here.
So, have some fun and take care of your health by experimenting with cold brew at home. We love to hear stories of new brew methods and personal experiences, so email any news to us at firstname.lastname@example.org or tag us in your home cold brew Instagram story #kimberleycoffeecompany.