Coffee: Health Benefits for your Body & Brain


I know I am not alone in needing my daily fix of coffee before I can do anything productive – but did you know that coffee has a whole host of health benefits for both your body and your brain?

Disclaimer: I am not a medical professional. Any changes in your nutrition or consumption of caffeine should be discussed with your doctor.

Benefit #1: Coffee has essential nutrients and antioxidants.

Coffee is a source of the following:

  • Riboflavin (Vitamin B2)
  • Pantothenic Acid (Vitamin B5)
  • Manganese and Potassium
  • Magnesium and Niacin
  • Polyphenols and hydrocinnamic acids

The addition of a healthy diet of whole foods contributes to the absorption of these essential nutrients and antioxidants.

Source: Medical News Today

Benefit #2: Coffee increases energy levels and brain function.

As you know, coffee contains the stimulant caffeine, which is the most consumed psychoactive substance in the world. As you drink coffee, it sends caffeine into your digestive system which is then absorbed into your bloodstream. It then travels to the brain where it blocks an inhibitory neurotransmitter called adenosine. That causes an increase in other neurotransmitters like norepinephrine and dopamine, which increases the firing of neurons in the brain.

This increased activity improves brain functions like memory, mood, vigilance, energy, reaction times, and general cognitive function.

Source: British Nutrition Foundation Bulletin, March 2008

Benefit #3: Coffee can improve physical performance and help you burn fat.

Caffeine is one of the few substances that have been clinically proven to aid in fat burning. Is it any wonder that it is included in almost every commercial fat burning supplement on the market? It probably won’t cause you to burn fat at rest, but if you combine it with exercise, you will see more benefits than through exercise alone.

Caffeine also increases epinephrine levels in the blood, and can also impact the motor cortex and increase thermogenesis. It can also enhance endurance performance by sparing muscle carbohydrate (glycogen) stores. These effects can lead to improved physical performance in the gym or in your chosen sport! For best results, it is recommended to consume around 30 minutes prior to activity.

Source: Authority Nutrition

Benefit #4: Coffee can help prevent disease.

Researchers from the US and abroad have shown a link between coffee consumption and a risk reduction and/or slower development of the following diseases: multiple sclerosis, colorectal cancer, liver cirrhosis, high blood pressure, Alzheimer’s, demential, Parkinson’s, and Type 2 diabetes.

Sources: Authority Nutrition, JAMA, Diabetologia, European Journal of Neurology, National Institutes of Health

This blog post pertains to the benefits of drinking black coffee. If you add a tablespoon of sugar to your brew or drink a Unicorn Frappuccino on the daily, this will most likely negate any health benefits. So grab a cup of black roasted deliciousness and enjoy!