Health superstar or liver-loading villain?
What’s the deal with coffee? Some people say it’s a health superstar, while others say it’s a liver-loading villain. Who do we believe and should we drink it or not?
Firstly, coffee contains both soluble fibre and plenty of polyphenolic compounds, both are super beneficial for our health. I’m a 2 cups of coffee a day kinda girl which can give me 3g of fibre (plus the polyphenols) – this is over 10% of my daily fibre requirements, and before I’ve even started on fruits, veggies, grains and legumes for the day. Boom! Fibre is important for good gut health, digestive wellbeing, can support blood glucose control and is even associated with reducing your risk of heart disease, diabetes and certain cancers.
But…(isn’t there always a BUT in nutrition advice?!) if you don’t feel great with coffee you can absolutely get fibre and polyphenols from other foods and drinks, so it isn’t an essential ingredient you must include in your day.
Nutrition isn’t a completely black or white science. What works for some people may not work for others. Yep, coffee contains fibre and polyphenols; but it can also increase stress hormone production and increases the load on your liver. This might not be helpful for YOUR body at the moment.
So is coffee good or bad? It depends. Sorry. Every person is an individual with different needs, tolerances, lifestyles, pleasures etc. What works for your friend might not work for you and vice versa. And that’s ok. As a registered dietitian, when I work with clients I don’t have a “one size for all” approach for their overall nutrition. I consider my clients’ goals, bloodwork, medical history, current eating pattern, activity, pleasures, concerns, fears and budgets when providing them with a tailored Nutrition Plan. If this holistic approach sounds like you and you’re keen to delve in to your individual wellbeing, get in touch.
Take home message
My take home message – if you love coffee and it feels right for you…then enjoy and savour it, and appreciate that it is providing you with some helpful nutrition. If you feel yuck, wired or nauseous with it (or don’t enjoy the taste), then don’t have it. You can easily get those nutrients from other food and drink options. Plus if you’d like a warming drink that packs a nutrition punch, check out my recipe for Anti-inflammatory Golden Milk here … it’s a goodie whether you drink coffee or not!