Caffeine is the most widely used stimulant in the world. For many years it was blamed for a whole range of different health issues – from heart disease to an increased risk of certain cancers.
But recent research seems to suggest that caffeine isn't as bad for you as once thought. In fact, these new findings state that the morning caffeine ritual actually has a range of positive health benefits.
So where does the truth lie? Is coffee the wondrous substance that keeps people productive whilst reducing their risk of health complications? Or is most of the world slowly poisoning themselves one Starbucks at a time?
First, let's look at why caffeine was once viewed as a dangerous substance. Older research did not take into account the fact coffee drinkers also fell into other 'high-risk' categories. So, health complications caused by other things, such as smoking, were wrongly attributed to caffeine.
New research has been a lot more thorough and provides a far clearer picture on caffeine from a long-term health perspective. And the picture painted is nothing short of startling when compared with what we were once told.
Let's look at some the reported health benefits of caffeine.
1. It can help treat hair loss. Many hair loss products contain caffeine, as it is proven to improve the vitality and health of hair follicles.
2. It can help reduce the risk of Type 2 diabetes. Studies have shown that caffeine can reduce the risk of developing this condition by as much as 50%.
3. It can reduce the risk of Alzheimer's disease. Caffeine can reduce the risk of this age-related neurodegenerative disease by as much as much as 25-30%.
4. It can reduce the risk of men developing ED. A study conducted in America stated that men who drink just a small amount of coffee could reduce the risk of developing erectile dysfunction.
The above are just a few findings that paint caffeine as a force for good – it keeps you alert and it keeps you healthy. That being said, this new acceptance of the benefits of caffeine is not a carte blanche to drink it incessantly.
It is scientific fact that consuming too much caffeine can be detrimental to health so remember to drink in moderation. Also, it is accepted that caffeine from natural sources is generally better, so energy drinks should not replace tea and coffee as your daily caffeine source.
That being said, the new research provides good reading to the billions of coffee drinkers across the world. The cup is definitely now half full.