I dedicate this post to my roommate and my many coffee-drinking friends, all of whom I adore, and all of whom inhale coffee at such a rate that they might as well walk around with one of those little hangers that administers it intravenously throughout the day.
Today, as I sip my mug of Truvia with a dash of some house blend, I bring to you the pros and cons of this popular beverage:
PRO: Coffee promotes the Einstein state of mind! Since it’s got a healthy dose of caffeine, it’s a stimulant, and it can increase information processing, alertness, attentiveness, and wakefulness. What now, Adderall?
CON: Did you accidentally indulge in a late afternoon or evening cup of liquid energy? That’s okay. There is only a four thousand percent chance that you’ll be tossing and turning until 3 am.
PRO: If you are addicted enough to be consuming around 5 cups of coffee a day, the upside is that you may be protecting yourself against the cognitive impairment of Alzheimer’s according to this super interesting mouse study.
PRO/CON: Despite its widely known addictive qualities, the FDA recognizes caffeine as a ‘safe’ drug. This means that zombified coffee consumers can tremble over their textbooks or in their cubicles with the comfort of knowing that there is not technically anything wrong with them — it’s just the caffeine doing its business.
CON: If your heart skips a beat, you might want to blame your coffee machine. Coffee consumption can cause cardiac arrhythmias (aka stupid fast or irregular heartbeats).
PRO: Because the chemical structure of caffeine is similar to that of theophylline, drinking a cup of coffee can help to alleviate asthma symptoms by opening up the bronchial airways. So if you’re allergic to your girlfriend’s cats…
CON: Caffeine makes you pee more, which can in turn make you dehydrated, if you aren’t drinking the recommended 27 glasses of water per day. But I’m sure you are.
CON: If you live in the 1600’s or frequent the great outdoors, then you’ve probably boiled coffee old school style. That’s totally cool and all, if you don’t mind high cholesterol (boiled coffee elevates blood total and LDL cholesterol because the unfiltered grounds contain the compounds cafestol and kahweol).
PRO: I know you’ve been worrying ceaselessly about developing kidney stones, but if you drink coffee on the regs, fret no more. More coffee means more pee which means a bad host environment for the crystallization of calcium oxalate which means no kidney stones for you.
CON: Drinking 4 cups a day are we? Better start upping your calcium intake. These fine Swedes discovered that consuming that amount of coffee each day can moderately increase risk of osteoporosis. That means your bones become porous and develop the superpower of being able to snap like a twig under little to no stress. Isn’t that awesome?
PRO: Fact! There is a direct positive relationship between coffee consumption and the ability to survive college. If you don’t believe me, don’t question my authority. Question any coffee drinking college student in the history of forever and they will tell you that it is so.
In conclusion: Coffee does not kill people. What does not kill you makes you stronger. Therefore, coffee makes you stronger. Well, unless you make the pot stronger, in which case it’s not really doing you many favors (except maybe saving you and your mice from Alzheimer’s).
I got my facts from this dumb little man.