Tag Archives: coffee

7 Coffee Facts You Need to Know

8 Oct

Apparently, Saturday, September 29 was National Coffee Day.  I missed it.

I’ve touted the benefits of coffee and caffeine in past articles and blog posts (Please see Coffee, Caffeine, and Exercise, among others).  Here’s an informative article from The Ladders’ Meredith Lepore.  Read it with your daily cup of java.

It seems like every day there is a new study telling us either that coffee is slowly killing us, making us healthier, making us smarter, making us dumber, helping us grow wings, etc., However there are a number of studies that have come out recently that reveal some very interesting facts about your daily cup of joe. In honor of National Coffee Day, this Saturday, check out these 7 facts about coffee.

It can make everyone you work with so much more appealing

A recent study that appears in the Journal of Psychopharmacology finds that if you have coffee before a conversation it will actually make you focus better and feel better about the people you are talking to. “The study was conducted using people who consume coffee regularly,” said study author Vasu Unnava. “For these people, it looks like coffee does make them feel more alert, focuses their thinking on the topic or task at hand, and has them participate more in group tasks. So, if you are a coffee drinker, it looks like coffee helps you do better in group tasks.”

The ideal time to drink coffee is actually four hours after you wake up

Though many of us can only get out of bed on the basis of knowing that a hot cup of coffee will be running through our bloodstreams within the hour, that is not actually when you should drink it if you want to maximize the benefits of caffeine. According to Laura Cipullo, registered dietitian and author of Women’s Health Body Clock Diet, you should have your first cup about four hours after you wake up. You are actually naturally alert when you wake up (even though it doesn’t feel like it) because your cortisol levels are high. So drinking caffeine on top that status is just going to make the drop even harder a few hours later.

It will extend your lifespan

In a study of 9 million British male and female adults, coffee drinkers had a slightly lower risk of death over 10 years (10 to 15%) than those who didn’t drink it regularly according to study, published in the journal JAMA Internal Medicine. Another study that took place over 10 years found that people who had four cups of coffee per day had a 64% lower risk of dying during the study than those who never drank it.

It won’t dehydrate you

Though coffee gets a bad rap it will not dehydrate you! Caffeine can keep you more hydrated than other liquids because you are usually drinking it with a volume of fluid like iced coffee or tea. A 2014 study found that there was zero evidence of dehydration with moderate daily coffee intake.

It can help you lose weight

According to a study out of the Netherlands, caffeine can increase your metabolic rate by as much as 11% and only three hours after you consume it.

It helps with memory

In addition to making you more alert, it can help you improve your memory according to a French study. But the best way to reap the memory benefits are by drinking it black (no sugar, creamer, etc.,) In addition to helping with memory it also can make you more intelligent, cleanse your gut, help your heart, improve your workouts, etc.

It can fend off diseases

A new study from the Simmons Cancer Center at UT Southwestern Medical Center found that consumption of coffee (both regular and decaf) is associated with a lower risk of developing colon cancer. Another study found that coffee can have some preventative qualities against type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease. It can even fight against the onset of Parkinson’s.

Get STRONGER, Get FASTER!

Your thoughts?

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Is 5-Hour Energy Worth It?

1 Mar

5-hour-energy[1]There’s a lot of marketing noise surrounding energy drinks. But should you partake if and when you want a little pick-me-up?

Yes and no, according to research. It appears that caffeine is responsible for virtually all the benefits of these energy drinks, including increased alertness and energy level. When caffeine is removed, the drinks’ other ingredients have little impact, say researchers.

Caffeine’s benefits are well-documented, and include:

  • Increased alertness and energy level
  • Improved cognitive function
  • A mild, mood-boosting effect
  • Improved exercise capacity

Ultimately, caffeine may help you think faster, exercise harder, and live longer. The next time you want a little caffeine-inspired jolt, stick with coffee. You’ll also benefit from its high levels of healthy antioxidants. If it’s got to be an energy drink, at least stay away from those that are loaded with sugar.

Get STRONGER, Get FASTER!

Your thoughts?

Coffee, Caffeine, and Exercise

16 Nov

cup-of-coffee1

Coffee sometimes gets a bad rap.  It’s full of antioxidants and essential nutrients, and has been linked with potential health benefits including: protecting against type 2 diabetes, Parkinson’s disease, liver disease, liver cancer, and promoting a healthy heart.

Additionally, coffee (caffeine) can improve energy levels, cognition, and physical performance.

Caffeine is one of two (legal) supplements documented to improve athletic and exercise performance (creatine being the other).

Athletes and active individuals routinely ingest caffeine to facilitate improvement during athletic activity, and resistance and endurance exercise.

Although the research regarding the relationship between caffeine and aerobic exercise performance is mixed, the majority of studies corroborate an improvement in resistance exercise performance after caffeine ingestion.

According to a recent study in the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research, “Coffee (0.15 g/kg) and decaffeinated coffee plus caffeine (5 mg/kg) have the ability to improve performance during a resistance exercise protocol.” (Richardson, D, et.al.)  This effect was especially significant in the short term.

The findings of this study include:

  • Caffeine increased contractility and force production of skeletal muscle
  • Caffeine enhanced neuromuscular transmission and maximal muscle activation
  • Increased calcium release and sodium-potassium pump activity
  • Inhibited negative effects of pain perception
  • Improved reaction time, cognition, and mood

Please see related articles:

Caffeine Reduces Post-Exercise Muscle Soreness

How Does Caffeine Affect Athletic Performance?

Get STRONGER, Get FASTER!

Your thoughts?

Superfoods That Power Up Your Diet

27 May

Diabetes SuperfoodsThis information is excerpted from an AARP article (sadly, I’m a card-carrying member), and I thought it was too good not to share.  Add these foods to your diet to improve memory, lower blood pressure, boost immune function, and more.

Coffee is loaded with antioxidants and can protect against cell damage, reducing your risk of diabetes, heart disease, and stroke.

Thyme can fight bacteria.

Wild Salmon is full of heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids and helps prevent premature aging and premature death.

Kale is rich in vitamin K (essential for blood clotting) and lutein, which reduces the risk of cataracts and other eye disorders.

Avocados improve overall hormone function.

Basil and mint may boost the immune system.

Olives and olive oil lower blood pressure, cholesterol, and stroke risk.

Walnuts enhance heart health.

Green tea protects cells and may reduce the risk of certain cancers.

Dark chocolate can decrease blood pressure and cholesterol levels.

Asparagus contains potassium and vitamin B12, important for cell repair and maintenance, and can protect against hearing loss.

Pomegranates can help keep the cardiovascular system healthy.

Garlic can help protect against heart attacks and strokes.

Yogurt is good for the gastrointestinal tract, and can reduce the likelihood of developing high blood pressure.

Blueberries can reduce heart attack risk and help protect against memory loss.

Get STRONGER, Get FASTER!

Your thoughts?

5 Tips to Boost Your Metabolism

28 Mar

5-Tips-To-Boost-Your-Metabolism_1024x1024[1]Here’s a nice article from our friends and colleagues at ASD Performance.

  1. ALWAYS EAT BREAKFAST

Eat a good breakfast. Every. Single. Day. If you don’t, your body goes into starvation mode which in turn causes your metabolism to slow in order to conserve energy. And the heartier your first meal is, the better. A study published in the American Journal of Epidemiology found that volunteers who reported regularly skipping breakfast had 4.5 times the risk of obesity as those who took the time to eat.

      2. DRINK COFFEE:

A study published in the journal Physiology & Behavior found that the average metabolic rate of people who drank caffeinated coffee increased 16 percent over that of those who drank decaf.

  1. RELAX:

Research is now showing that high levels of stress in in fact contributing to to weight gain. When you are stressed, your body will increase your stress hormone cortisol, which stimulates fat cells to increase in size and encourage fat storage. Stress hormones can also spike your appetite, making you likely to overeat or stress eat.

     4. PICK UP THE PROTEIN:

Cramming protein into every meal helps to build and maintain lean muscle mass. Muscle burns more calories than fat does, even at rest. Aim for about 30 grams of protein — the equivalent of about one cup of low-fat cottage cheese or a four-ounce boneless chicken breast — at each meal.

  1. CHOOSE ORGANIC PRODUCE:

Researchers in Canada found that dieters with the most organochlorides (chemicals found in pesticides) stored in their fat cells were the most susceptible to disruptions in mitochondrial activity and thyroid function. Translation: Their metabolism stalled.

Get STRONGER, Get FASTER!

Your thoughts?

Is 5-Hour Energy Worth It?

8 Nov

5-hour-energy[1]There’s a lot of marketing noise surrounding energy drinks. But should you partake if and when you want a little pick-me-up?

Yes and no, according to research. It appears that caffeine is responsible for virtually all the benefits of these energy drinks, including increased alertness and energy level. When caffeine is removed, the drinks’ other ingredients have little impact, say researchers.

Caffeine’s benefits are well-documented, and include:

  • Increased alertness and energy level
  • Improved cognitive function
  • A mild, mood-boosting effect
  • Improved exercise capacity

Ultimately, caffeine may help you think faster, exercise harder, and live longer. The next time you want a little caffeine-inspired jolt, stick with coffee. You’ll also benefit from its high levels of healthy antioxidants. If it’s got to be an energy drink, at least stay away from those that are loaded with sugar.

Get STRONGER, Get FASTER!

Your thoughts?

Superfoods That Power Up Your Diet

22 Apr

Diabetes SuperfoodsThis information is excerpted from an AARP article (sadly, I’m a card carrying member), and I thought it was too good not to share.  Add these foods to your diet to improve memory, lower blood pressure, boost immune function, and more.

Coffee is loaded with antioxidants and can protect against cell damage, reducing your risk of diabetes, heart disease, and stroke.

Thyme can fight bacteria.

Wild Salmon is full of heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids and helps prevent premature aging and premature death.

Kale is rich in vitamin K (essential for blood clotting) and lutein, which reduces the risk of cataracts and other eye disorders.

Avocados improve overall hormone function.

Basil and mint may boost the immune system.

Olives and olive oil lower blood pressure, cholesterol, and stroke risk.

Walnuts enhance heart health.

Green tea protects cells and may reduce the risk of certain cancers.

Dark chocolate can decrease blood pressure and cholesterol levels.

Asparagus contains potassium and vitamin B12, important for cell repair and maintenance, and can protect against hearing loss.

Pomegranates can help keep the cardiovascular system healthy.

Garlic can help protect against heart attacks and strokes.

Yogurt is good for the gastrointestinal tract, and can reduce the likelihood of developing high blood pressure.

Blueberries can reduce heart attack risk and help protect against memory loss.

Get STRONGER, Get FASTER!

Your thoughts?

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