Increasingly, we are hearing about the dangers of soda for our health.
Due to ingredients such as high fructose corn syrup, aspartame, phosphoric acid, and artificial coloring and flavors, soda consumption has been linked to diabetes and obesity.
In addition to the negative effects, it is absolutely devoid of any nutritional value. Because people like to consume flavorful drinks, it is important to have beverage options that not only taste good, but offer some nutritional benefits as well.
While drinking pure water is essential for health, people often want to substitute it with drinks that offer more of an experience.
Though fruit juice often comes to mind as a healthy beverage, it is often not as healthy as people think, due to the added sugar.
For this reason, healthier drink options are needed for adults who are looking for alternatives to water. So what else is there if you take out juices, frescas, and soda? The best options are coffee and tea.
Common Misconceptions About Coffee and Tea
Coffee and tea are often overlooked when people think about nutritious liquid refreshments. This is mainly due to their caffeine content along with commonly believed myths about them.
While caffeine has been shown to increase blood pressure or cause jitteriness, in moderate amounts it does not affect most people in that manner.
Caffeine actually has been demonstrated to increase stamina and intensity when working out, reduce headaches, and stimulate the brain and nervous system, which can improve concentration and make you more alert.
Another myth about coffee is that it raises the risk of cardiovascular disease, contributing to heart attacks and an irregular heartbeat.
However, not only has moderate consumption not been proven in studies to increase this risk, but according to some research, it has actually been shown to reduce the risk of stroke.
Addiction to caffeine is another misconception related to coffee and tea consumption. People are concerned that this addiction can be detrimental to health.
However, recent scientific research using brain scans has shown that moderate caffeine consumers are not physically dependent. The appearance of addiction is most likely due to the routine of drinking coffee or tea daily, for the enjoyment of the aroma and taste.
Health Benefits of Coffee and Tea
Though there are misconceptions that come to mind when people think about the dangers of coffee or tea, there are actually many health benefits.
In addition to the pleasant aromas, mouth-watering flavors, and the overall satisfying experience that a warm cup of coffee or tea gives you, there are several excellent health-related reasons why you should add these drinks to your daily routine.
Coffee and tea both contain polyphenols, which are antioxidants. These antioxidants are powerful free radical fighters, meaning they may help to protect us from damage that free radicals can cause in the body.
Smoking, pollution, and UV light contribute to oxidative stress that wreaks havoc on our cells, but this damage can be minimized by consuming antioxidants.
Antioxidants have been shown to protect against heart disease and cancer. Surprisingly, coffee contains more antioxidants than some fruits and vegetables.
Though caffeine has a bad rap, as mentioned above, it can actually be beneficial. Caffeine intake stimulates the release of dopamine, which gives us a feeling of pleasure.
It also contributes to problem solving and increased alertness. One study showed that it boosted brain power for about 45 minutes.
Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, otherwise known as NAFLD, is found in seventy percent of people who are diabetic and obese. Coffee and tea have been found to reduce fatty liver when four cups are consumed daily.
Enjoy Coffee and Tea Daily
Next time you’re reaching for a drink and you want something that offers great flavor in addition to contributing to your well-being, reach for a cup of coffee or tea.
When combined with a healthy diet and frequent water intake, coffee and tea are not only enjoyable, but healthy as well. Two to four cups daily are considered moderate and safe for most people, so go ahead and reach for a cup now!
About Tiffany Boutwell
Tiffany Boutwell is a Certified Nutritional Consultant, Holistic Health Practitioner, and owner of Natural Apple Holistic Health. Tiffany believes chronic illness stems from improper nutrition, and that a diet rich in whole foods can help people to be free from the undesirable effects of the Standard American Diet. She resides on a farm in Kentucky with her family where she enjoys reading, yoga, and writing. Tiffany has authored an e-cookbook and health articles in various publications.