By Garrison Murphy ’15
In a world driven by results and productivity, it’s no surprise that stimulants like caffeine have widespread popularity.
In 2013 more than 83 percent of Americans reported drinking coffee on a regular to semi regular basis, according to the National Coffee Association, with 63 percent stating that drinking coffee is part of their daily routine.
And like most indulgences in our mostly sedentary society, the world of modern medicine has expressed its reservations about it.
While the concerns raised in some medical studies have proven legitimate and credible, the average coffee drinker should consider both the pros and cons of a morning Joe before dumping it completely.
In many instances components and aspects of coffee have proven beneficial to not only mental but physical health.
In recent years a number of studies showed the health benefits and drawbacks of drinking coffee, some of which have been used to make coffee drinkers think twice before sipping.
In 2013 a study released in the Mayo Clinic Proceedings found a correlation between drinking coffee and dying younger.
“Coffee: Your Poison or Your Medicine?”, an article featured in the Huffington Post September 2013, did not mention that the point where coffee drinking became inherently harmful was 28 cups a week.
Just 24 percent of coffee drinkers make it over 13 cups a week, according to Statistic Brain, and a recent study by the New England Journal of Medicine showed that drinking two cups of coffee a day decreased the risk of dying prematurely by 10 percent.
Thus, if a coffee drinker is not consuming extreme amounts of coffee every day coffee can have benefits.
Caffeine has also been known to help combat the early onset of Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease.
The Japan Geriatrics Society found that drinking the equivalent of three cups a day reduced the risk of Parkinson’s disease by 26 percent.
Additionally, a study done at University of South Florida and University of Miami showed that drinking the same amount of coffee could delay the effects of early-onset Alzheimer’s.
Athletic Trainer and Physical Education teacher Mr. Chris White said that the average person can take in 300 milligrams of caffeine without any adverse health defects.
The only demographics that are threatened by caffeine intake are those who already have a medical predisposition, the elderly, very young children or those who consume extreme amounts of coffee, Mr. White said.
He added the one thing most coffee drinkers do have to worry about is developing a caffeine dependency as that is where problems arise.
However, if you are already drinking coffee moderately and not experiencing adverse side effects, statistics show that you may actually benefit not only in the form of short-term energy boosts but also in long-term health.