Coffee—the reason many of us are able to get up and bring our A-games to the world every single day. It is one of the most popular beverages in the world, with over 450 million cups being consumed in the United States every single day. In 2018, 64 percent of Americans surveyed said that they drink a cup of coffee at least once a day, climbing two full percentage points since 2017. Most of that growth focuses on specialty coffee. Today, we want to dive into the why. Is coffee healthy? How does it help/hurt your workout progress, and how much should you have?
Coffee Health Benefits
Your cup of joe contains a little something you may have heard of called caffeine. Caffeine is the most commonly consumed psychoactive substance in the world and can be found in things like tea, sodas, chocolate, some breakfast cereals, and even ice cream! However, not all caffeine is created equally. Caffeine from coffee and teas ( or naturally occurring caffeine) has been shown to increase energy levels, quicken reaction times, help to improve memory, and, of course, lift your energy levels. Coffee also includes many nutrients like Vitamins B2, B5, and B3, Manganese and potassium.
Coffee And The Gym
With pre-workout drinks growing in popularity, one may be surprised to find that one of the best pre-workouts can be found in their kitchen. And, since we are talking coffee today, we are sure you have guessed which drink that is (coffee, guys… it’s coffee). The caffeine in coffee can help to increase your metabolism, and it can help to stimulate fat loss. When consumed before a workout, caffeine has even been proven to help people to train longer, lift heavier, and improve their speed. But, our favorite benefit of drinking coffee rather than other pre-workouts is that you know the ingredients—coffee beans + water.
How Many Cups Should You Have Each Day?
Like most things, coffee is best when drank in moderation. So, stick with 1 to 4 cups a day! After several decades of studies on coffee, almost all come back to prove positive health benefits. However, for those people who drink too much, the results start to decline. So, don’t risk it and keep your consumption on the lower end. Also, beware of the temperature of your coffee. Coffee over 149 degrees F poses a risk for esophageal cancer and burning your throat—ouch!
Tea Works Too!
The answer is in the elegant drink that comes with its very own time, tea. Tea, especially green tea, is a great substitute for coffee. Green tea has an antioxidant that promotes heart health and contains metabolic benefits. You can have green tea at any time of day, and it is a natural way to get your energy up before a workout! If you don’t like plain tea (or even coffee for that matter), add some honey or another natural sweetener to make it a little more palatable for you.
So, what is your natural caffeine of choice? Let us know in the comments below!