MYTH: Coffee Is Bad For You

Ancient Greek mythology has it that Zeus threw a lightning bolt at Achilles because he caught him having coffee with Persephone. Zeus, like, totally had a crush on Persephone! Can you believe Achilles would do that to Zeus?  

Psych!

Just making sure you were paying attention. That’s what we like to call a myth--something that totally sounds true, but isn’t.

There’s a lot of coffee mythology out there (here’s another: Did you know the Cuban was created when Poseidon changed his younger brother Cubanius into a creamy latte?). Since the time when dinosaurs ate coffee cherries straight off the tree (don’t get us started on that myth), there have been myriad coffee myths making the rounds.

We’re here to tell you the truth about coffee. Great coffee isn’t a mystery, and it isn’t a myth either.

For the next three days, CREMA will be crackin’ coffee myths. We’d call it “Myth Busters” but there’s already that TV show, so: Myth Grinders? Myth Extractors? Myth Roasters? Whatever we call it, myths: prepare to get burned.

PART ONE: Coffee is bad for you.

This is a classic myth, right up there with the one about Zeus and the dolphin goddess.

And like any good myth, it’s false. Coffee is actually good for you.

The coffee-is-bad narrative emerged decades ago, when poor research failed to account for other unhealthy lifestyle choices that can but of course don’t necessarily go along with drinking coffee (namely: smoking and drinking). Of course people who drank coffee were dying sooner: they were also drinking alcohol and smoking cigarettes.

Today, many studies have extracted this bad logic, revealing the numerous positive health benefits of coffee. Among them:

Drinking coffee significantly lowers the risk of diabetes (and for diabetics, drinking coffee can, remarkably, lengthen life).

Coffee drinkers have a reduced risk for neurodegenerative disorders like Alzheimer’s or Parkinson’s.

Coffee protects the liver, and is crammed with nutrients and antioxidants (more antioxidants than fruits and veggies--combined).

A Harvard study linked drinking coffee with a lower risk of depression.

You’ve heard that coffee makes you dehydrated? Well, take a swig of this: it doesn’t.

Coffee, of course, has caffeine, the magical ingredient that remains the drug of choice at youth group lock-ins. You’ve heard caffeine is bad for you, too? Well, hold your over-caffeinated horses. Caffeine can make you more alert (duh), increase memory function, improve athletic performance, and help burn fat. Decaf for what?

Now for a little group participation. When we say “in!” you say “moderation!”

IN! MODERATION! IN MODERATION!

There, that was fun. So yes, drink coffee in moderation. If you’re drinking so much coffee that when you try to sleep you end up Instagramming until 2 a.m., making yourself a sandwich, and watching six wide-eyed episodes of Real World/Road Rules Challenge before falling desperately to sleep, you’re drinking too much coffee.

Also, and it probably goes without saying, but all of coffee’s health benefits are based on drinking it straight-up, old school, just-plain-ol’-black. Many of these positive findings are made obsolete when coffee drinkers add enough cream and sugar to drown Helen of Troy (the latte that launched a thousand ships?). CREMA, of course, does not offer Mount Olympus-sized, Starbucks-y drinks, and none of our drinks are overly sweet. We don’t want all our customers to look like Greek gods and goddesses, but we do want you to experience optimum health and taste--we’re happy to answer any questions about what’s in our drinks, and we’re especially happy to brew you a cup of delicious, health-giving, cup of coffee.

Check back tomorrow for Part Two of our series on Coffee Myths: “Fresh roasted coffee is best!”