Benefits and Disadvantages of Coffee: The Complete List (04/2018 Update)

Benefits and Disadvantages of Coffee: The Complete List (04/2018 Update)

Are you a coffee addict? Well, I am a certified coffee addict. Thus, it is quite easy for me to write an article giving all the terrific things that coffee can do for you. Although, there are some disadvantages of drinking coffee, I will make things easy for you by giving the most important benefits of coffee.

Benefits Of Coffee

1. Coffee Can Improve Energy Levels and Make You Smarter:

As a stimulant, coffee makes your brain to generate more dopamine and adrenaline than usual. This can have many positive effects such as enhancing your memory, improving energy levels and reaction times. When I was in a university, I used to hate morning exams. But then I started drinking down a cup of coffee before going to school. While under the influence of coffee, my exam scores improved drastically.

Coffee perks up your mornings and boosts your energy so you can perform better at work or at school. The boost of energy you experience from coffee is due to the stimulant impact of caffeine.

2. Coffee Can Help You Burn Fat.

This is quite good news for those who want to burn those unwanted calories. You want to wear your bikini at the beach during summers. Coffee will help you shed those fats. It can help you achieve your target body weight. Studies show that green coffee extract was discovered to be an important factor in helping pre-obese people achieve their normal weight. Coffee has caffeine which is considered as the most popular substance around the globe. There is a good reason why caffeine is usually found in many commercial fat burning supplements. Caffeine is known for helping mobilize fats from the fat tissues and improve metabolism.

3. The Caffeine Can Drastically Improve Physical Performance

Drinking coffee can improve not only physical but also mental performance. A single dose of caffeine can greatly improve exercise performance, focus and fat burning. Caffeine is a performance-enhancing drug which strolls around the body which affects almost everything, but it is most commonly known for sustaining alertness in the brain.

It blocks adenosine, a chemical which slows down other brain signals during rest and sleep. Because of this, we feel more energetic. We get better focus and we don’t feel tired when exercising. Coffee makes you better at sports, but you have to know how to use it strategically.

4. There Are Essential Nutrients in Coffee

There’s more to coffee than just a caffeinated drink. While brewing coffee, essential organic nutrients and compounds from the coffee beans enter the water and add to the nutritional value of coffee. These include a wide variety of B-family vitamins, such as riboflavin, pantothenic acid, and niacin, as well as potassium, manganese, and magnesium.

 Drinking sources of riboflavin can help minimize the deficiencies in Vitamin B-2. The magnesium in coffee helps in improving the functioning of the heart. But most importantly, coffee has caffeine, which can benefit your health when drank in moderation and at the proper times during the day.

5. Coffee May Protect You From Alzheimer’s Disease and Dementia

While coffee definitely has short-term mental advantages, it can also prove to be good for your brain in the long term as well. In fact, regular coffee drinking has been proven to significantly reduce the risks of getting degenerative brain diseases like Alzheimer’s disease and dementia. Alzheimer’s and dementia are common health problems for older people. Drinking 3 cups a day may help in decreasing the risks of Alzheimer’s among older people who are already manifesting symptoms of memory loss. So if you’re wondering why your grandfather’s memory is still sharp, ask him if he loves drinking coffee.

6. Coffee Appears to Have Protective Effects on The Liver

Coffee has been proven to reduce the risks of getting cirrhosis of the liver by around 80%. Cirrhosis is a scarring of the liver that can result to liver failure in extreme cases. Between 1980 and 2010, the number of deaths caused by cirrhosis around the world increased from 675,000 to over a million. People who drink more than four cups daily were discovered to have the strongest immunity against liver disease. Coffee does not only fight the impact of alcohol on your liver, but it has also been proven to decrease the risks of liver cancer by up to 40%.

7.Coffee Can Fight Depression and Make You Happier

If you’re a coffee junkie, meaning, you consume 4 or more cups of coffee, then you are 10% more likely to suffer from depression compared to non-drinkers.  Depression risk becomes lower with consuming more caffeinated coffee. The benefits of coffee are not only because of caffeine. According to Honglei Chen, an epidemiologist, the reason why coffee affects our mood is because of the antioxidants it contains. Coffee contains more than 1200 chemical compounds which make it the single most complex food item. This kind of complexity is what makes coffee so exciting for us, the potential for flavor, uniqueness, and individuality.

8.Coffee Drinkers Have a Lower Risk of Some Types of Cancer

Drinking coffee can reduce the chances of getting different kinds of cancer. In one Japanese case study, it has been proven that coffee fights cancer because it has rich antioxidants. According to the American Society for Nutrition, colon cancer patients who consumed four or more cups of coffee daily were 42% less likely to have colon cancer. Just by drinking two cups everyday can reduce the chances of acquiring colon cancer. Drinking three cups of coffee daily can also slow down the onset of some types of breast cancer.

9.  Coffee is The Biggest Source of Antioxidants in The Western Diet

Coffee doesn’t just give only a caffeine jolt. It is considered as the most important source of antioxidants. According to a study from the University of Scranton, coffee is the number one source of antioxidants in the US diet. Studies also show that both caffeinated and decaffeinated coffee have almost the same amounts of antioxidants. However, researchers say these studies shouldn’t be interpreted as an excuse to drink more cups of coffee because of health reasons. The National Center for Biotechnology Information says that fruits and vegetables have more antioxidants because they contain more vitamins and minerals.

10. Cut the Pain

Drinking coffee moderately can help relieve body pains. However, drinking coffee daily and then suddenly stopping can lead to headaches and muscle pain. According to a study from the University of Georgia, drinking two cups of coffee can decrease post-workout pain by 48%. So if you’re doing any weight training, you know the feeling of getting sore muscles. It can be very painful if you are just new at exercising or have been inactive for a while. This research was only small and limited only to women. In addition, the women were not regular coffee drinkers. So, the impact might be minimized for those who drink coffee on a regular basis.     

 11.  Increase your fiber intake

Drinking coffee can help increase your fiber intake which is good for digestion. There is a study which proves that brewed coffee contains soluble fiber which can help in digestion. A typical 8 oz cup of coffee has as much as 1.5 grams of fiber and 3.2 cups nearly five grams of fiber. Nowadays, a cup is relative. A grande cup at Starbucks is 16 ounces which could have as much as 3 grams of fiber. But this should not mean that you should only rely on coffee for your daily fiber intake. You can also get your fiber from fruits and vegetables.

Coffee contains  a lot of antioxidants and other chemicals such as caffeine that you won’t feel depressed while consuming coffee. In fact, the National Institute of Health discovered that people who consume four or more cups daily are 10% less likely to suffer from depression.  Coffee also decreases the chances of committing suicide because of the good feelings associated with drinking coffee.

12. Reduces suicide risk and Depression

You may believe that coffee is harmful for your heart than helpful, since it has caffeine which increases the beating of your heart. The truth is that drinking three to five cups of coffee daily decreases your risks of cardiovascular disease. Although you consume more than five cups daily, your risk of getting a heart attack is pretty much the same than those who don’t drink coffee at all.

13.  Coffee drinkers have less risk of heart disease


14. Coffee drinkers have stronger DNA.

In a study published by the National Center for Biotechnology Information, it has been discovered that those who drink coffee have stronger DNA. Compared to non-coffee drinkers, coffee drinkers have white blood cell DNA strands which have less accidental breakage. This is due to the antioxidants which help reduce the oxidative stress. As a result, coffee makes our cells stronger and more protected. In a 2014 National Coffee Association study, 61% of Americans consume coffee on a regular basis. So, go ahead and order your cup of latte or mocha at your favorite coffee shop.        

15.  Lower Risk of Multiple Sclerosis

There are past studies which prove that consuming coffee can minimize risks of getting Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s diseases. There is a new study which was conducted in Sweden which compared the risks of having multiple sclerosis between coffee drinkers and non-coffee drinkers. It has been found that non-coffee drinkers were around one and a half times more likely to get multiple sclerosis than those people who consume at least six cups of coffee daily. However, researchers still are not sure if caffeine is directly responsible for the effects or some other behavior which are specific to coffee drinkers.

16.  Coffee reduces colorectal cancer risk

Consuming small doses of caffeine regularly can greatly minimize the chances of having bowel cancer. According to a study at the University of Southern California, drinking just one or two cups a day reduces the risks by up to 26%. What’s more, drinking espresso can reduce the number further. It is not because of caffeine alone which helps in preventing bowel cancer. The same results were found in both caffeinated and decaffeinated coffee. The reason for this is the presence of antioxidants and other chemicals and others think it can also be the roasting process.

17. Less Gout Risk

Coffee can lower the risks of gout. According to a Canada/US study, drinking four cups a day can reduce the chances of getting gout by 40%. Researchers discovered that the more cups of coffee the men drink, the less likely they will develop gout. Consuming one to three cups a day reduced gout risk by only 8%. However, drinking four or five cups a day lowered gout risk by 40%. Although the reason why coffee reduces gout risk is not clear, researchers note that coffee is a major source of an antioxidant, phenol chlorogenic acid, that can influence gout risk.

18. Coffee Makes You  Live Longer

There are some proven side effects to drinking coffee which is why many people shun it. These range from getting jitters to the headaches which coffee addicts experience when they are unable to drink their coffee. On the other hand, a study from Harvard showed that those who drink coffee could live longer lives than those who don’t drink coffee. Moreover, it also discovered that the negative effects of drinking too much coffee have minimal effects on the body in the long run. So keep on drinking coffee!

19. Coffee reduces risk of stroke

Similar to heart attack, drinking two to six cups of coffee daily has been proven to decrease a person’s chances of having a stroke. According to a study in 2011, drinking coffee moderately has a weak inverse relationship with the risk of stroke. In comparison with non-coffee drinkers, drinking 2 cups of coffee daily was linked with a 14% decrease while 3 cups of coffee daily has a 17% decrease in the risk of stroke.

20.  Coffee may lower risk of Type II diabetes

With the rising consumption of sweet products over the years, there is an increased number of cases of diabetes. Good thing, you can prevent this by consuming a few cups of sugar-free coffee daily. The National Center for Biotechnology Information has found that drinking coffee significantly decreases a person’s chances of getting Type II diabetes. For each cup of coffee a day that the participants drank, researchers discovered that their risks of acquiring diabetes decreased by 7%.    If you like a lot of sugar in your coffee, maybe you can drink your coffee with less sugar a day and take it one step at a time.

21. Longevity

Coffee can lower the risk of death. A nutrition study tracked over 520,000 individuals from ten European countries for an average of 16.4 years. Researchers discovered that the more coffee the persons drank, the lower their risk of death. Moreover, researchers discovered lower risk of death from illnesses of the digestive system and circulatory system. For males, drinking coffee was also linked to lower risk of suicide.

22.  Prevents Retinal Damage

Coffee can help save your eyes as you grow older. A study from Cornell University says that coffee has an antioxidant called chlorogenic acid, which can prevent retinal degeneration in mice. The retina is a thin layer of tissue found on the inner back wall of the eye. It is used for receiving and organizing visual information and since it needs a lot of oxygen to work properly, it can be susceptible to oxidative stress. Lack of oxygen can damage the tissue and result to losing one’s vision.

23.  Black coffee prevents cavities and may protect against periodontal disease

Drinking black coffee can help your teeth from rotting. Brazilian researchers discovered that a specific kind of coffee bean has an anti-bacterial property. A strong black coffee without sugar and drank moderately can help keep your teeth healthy.

Researchers from Rio de Janeiro’s Federal University tested extracted baby teeth with an extract from Coffea canephora, a kind of bean which comprise of 30% of the coffee around the world. They discovered that the coffee actively broke down bacterial biofilms which can cause dental plagues, a major reason for tooth decay.  

24. Coffee may protect against melanoma

According to the Journal of the National Cancer Institute, people who consume four or more cups of coffee a day were 20% less likely to have malignant melanoma compared to non-coffee drinkers. Melanoma is the number one cause of skin-cancer death in the US. The researchers found out that there were 55.9 cases of melanoma annually per 100,000 people among those who consumed at least four cups a day, compared to 77.64 cases annually per 100,000 people who didn’t drink coffee.

25. Reduced heart attack mortality risk

A study published in the Journal Heart discovered that people who consume three to five cups daily are less likely to have clogged arteries which can result to heart attacks. They discovered that people who drink coffee moderately had the lowest risk of coronary calcium in their arteries. Coronary artery calcium is an early indicator of coronary atherosclerosis, a hardening and narrowing of the arteries, which can lead to blood clots

26. Coffee reduces risk of Parkinson’s disease

Parkinson’s disease is the next most common neurodegenerative illness after Alzheimer’s, and similar to Alzheimer’s, preventing it is essential. Parkinson’s happens when the neurons in the brain that produces dopamine begin to die. A study from the National Center for Biotechnology Information discovered that people who consume coffee have from a 32% to 60% lower chance of getting Parkinson’s compared to those who do not drink coffee. This is probably due to the caffeine content because those who drink decaffeinated coffee   do not have the same preventive advantages.

27. Protects against gallstones

Caffeinated coffee can help prevent gallstones. Caffeinated coffee can encourage the gallbladder to contract and empty completely, which forces out little bits of bile that could form into kidney stones. In a study from the Journal of the American Medical Association, it has been found that men who drank the most caffeinated coffee had the least risk of gallstones. Another study published in Gastroenterology tracked 81,000 women and found out the same conclusion that coffee can help prevent gallbladder disease.

Disadvantages of Coffee

1. Bad coffee can be toxic.

Poor quality coffee can have a lot of unhealthy substances which can result to illnesses, headaches or other uncomfortable feelings. This usually happens when your coffee is made from beans that are over ripped or rotten. One rotten bean can make your cup toxic. If you purchase high quality, specialty coffee, then you will not have to worry about your coffee being toxic.

2.  Coffee can kill you.

It is possible that coffee can lead to your death. Drinking 80-100 cups of coffee in a short period can kill you. This dosage is very deadly and will amount in 10-13 grams of caffeine in your body. On the other hand, before reaching this number, you will vomit most of it because 23 liters of coffee is too much. Even consuming 23 liters of water can lead to your death.

3.  Coffee can cause insomnia and restlessness.

Coffee can make you restless and can make it difficult for you to sleep. The suggested maximum amount of caffeine is 400 milligrams, which is approximately the amount you will receive from drinking 4 cups of coffee. If you are sensitive to caffeine, avoid drinking too much coffee. It is written in our DNA the amount of caffeine that is safe for drinking

 4.  Troublesome For Pregnant Women

According to a Harvard study, drinking coffee while pregnant can make your baby highly sensitive to caffeine. Too much caffeine can increase the risks of women having a miscarriage. The NHS suggests to limit caffeine to 200 mg daily or just two cups of instant coffee.​​​​

5.  If you have high cholesterol please choose filtered coffee

In a study from Harvard, it has been found that coffee beans have cafestol and kahweol, which are substances that can increase LDL cholesterol levels. When you filter your coffee, it will trap the LDL cholesterol. The coffee variants which contain cafestol and kahweol include espresso, Turkish coffee, French press and Scandinavian style “cooked coffee”.

6. Coffee for kids, may increase bedwetting

There is a survey that found out that 5-7 year old children who drink coffee can increase eneuresis or bedwetting. Two hundred twenty-eight parents were surveyed and they claimed that their 5 to 7 year old kids consumed approximately 52 mg of caffeine everyday while their 8 to 12 year old kids consumed 109 mg everyday. Caffeine, whether in food or drink, is considered as a diuretic which means it can stimulate the bladder to generate more urine.

7. Anxiety and Lack of Sleep

Drinking coffee can increase the levels of anxiety and can lead to panic attacks in people. Coffee can result to feelings of being jittery and higher heart rates. One food that is consistent in contributing anxiety is coffee. If you are experiencing anxiety, you should stop drinking coffee to prevent anxiety symptoms. Moreover, coffee can give you trouble in sleeping. It is better you drink coffee in the mornings if you have trouble sleeping.

8. May Interact Badly With Medications

Drinking coffee and espresso can have negative effects with some medicines. According to a study by the National Coffee Association, medications such as antidepressants, thyroid medication and osteoporosis drugs can be negatively affected by caffeine. It has been discovered that taking Fosamax with black coffee decreases its absorption by around 60%. The drug should be taken with water on an empty stomach at least 30 minutes before breakfast for best results. People who take in their thyroid drug with espresso decreased its absorption up to 55%. Make sure to check with your physician about whether coffee can affect your medicine.

9.  Harmful For Kids

In the US, allowing children to drink coffee is a no-no. There are several negative effects of coffee on children. For one, it can lead to insomnia.

Kids aged 5 to 12 years old need sleep for at least 11 hours. Caffeine lasts up to 8 hours. This can lead to loss of sleep in children. Coffee can also lead to appetite loss and reduce their overall nutrition.

Growing kids should have a balanced diet of protein, whole grains, fruits and vegetables. Moreover, coffee can result to behavioral problems in kids which include hyperactivity, restlessness and lack of ability to focus.

About the author

Ann Hills

My name is Ann Hills and I am a food blogger, nutrition advisor, and a yoga teacher. When I was a child, I often got around my mother and watched her cooking in our kitchen. My mom always says to me that: “Kitchen is the heart of any home”. I strongly believe in her saying that’s reason why I prefer spending my money to make my home better than other stuff.