Until recently, mainstream doctors often advised patients against drinking coffee.
They believed the caffeine could cause the heart to speed up and beat irregularly. That myth was finally debunked in a 2016 study in the Journal of the American Heart Association.
Other recent studies have found that coffee actually improves heart health. And it also:
- Prevents weight gain and diabetes.
- Protects against cancer.
- Lowers the risk of getting Alzheimer’s.
- Improves skin health.
Now, a new study shows that coffee is beneficial in another way.
The research was presented at the American College of Gastroenterology annual meeting in San Antonio.
Scientists examined microbiome samples from people with various coffee-drinking habits.
The microbiome refers to the millions of bacteria that live in the body. These organisms are beneficial to us in many ways. They fight depression, aid the immune system, improve digestion, and are important for our general health and well-being.
The study found that people who drank two or more cups of coffee daily had better gut microbiomes than those who drank less or no coffee.
People who drank the most coffee had a better, more abundant, and well-balanced array of bacterial species in their large intestine. They had more anti-inflammatory bacteria and fewer microbes linked to obesity.
Dr. Hana Kahleova is director of clinical research at the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine. She said people who eat a typical Western diet breed disease-promoting bacteria in their guts. But coffee can help mitigate the microbiome damage caused by processed and fast foods.
What Type of Coffee is Healthiest?
A recent study looked at the effects of different types of coffee at a cellular level.
Scientists from universities in Korea tested light, medium, city (sometimes called “continental” or “light French roast”), and French (dark) roast. For comparison, regular Folgers and most other major store brands are medium-roast coffees.
A coffee solution of each type of roast was introduced to mice cells. Then scientists observed its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects.
Light roast coffee had the most benefit, beating out medium roast by a few percentage points. City roast was about 10% less beneficial. And French roast dropped a substantial 25%.
But whether light or dark, choose organic coffee whenever you can…and skip sugar and artificial creamers.
You’ll enjoy those morning cups of coffee even more, knowing that they’re giving a boost to your microbiome—and your overall health.
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