Source: BBC Food
Coffee is a brewed drink prepared using roasted coffee beans which are taken from the berries of the Coffea plant. There are two main species of coffee beans which are the Arabica and Robusta, and depending on where they are grown, both the country and the altitude determines the flavour of the coffee. For example, Brazilian coffee usually has more chocolate and spice flavour compared to Ethiopian coffee which has a stronger, sweet berry flavour.
Nutritional benefits of coffee
There are two main factors that could be considered benefits to drinking coffee. The first is associated with its high antioxidant status. Antioxidants are important for health as they prevent our cells from being oxidised by toxins, chemicals and inflammation. The second is the stimulant caffeine, although this also presents potential risk factors if consumed in excessive amounts and for certain people who may be vulnerable to its effects (see below). Coffee, in addition, does contain some B vitamins, magnesium and potassium.
Can coffee help you live longer?
Recent research published in the Annals of Internal Medicine suggests that having three cups of coffee per day could lengthen lifespan by lowering the risk of death from several key conditions including heart disease. The study followed over 500,000 people from 10 European countries for over 16 years. However, critics say that the study could not take into account every circumstance, such as economic, social and other lifestyle factors, that could have contributed to their findings. They also excluded participants with some pre-existing conditions such as diabetes, heart disease, or stroke before beginning the study.