Coffee & Tea: Nature’s Superfoods?
By Bridgitte Carroll, MS, RDN
For many of us, coffee and tea are staples in our morning routine. But, is drinking caffeine good for us? And, how much is too much? The good news is that both beverages actually can be good for us when consumed in moderation.
The Health Benefits of Coffee
Coffee is rich in antioxidants and has been shown to reduce the risks of neurological diseases, cardiovascular disease, diabetes and even some types of cancer. If you’re looking for an even healthier boost, go organic! Four Sigmatic, for instance, makes organic coffee that is free of mycotoxins and has added medicinal mushrooms to boost your health. Try their Lion’s Mane coffee to support productivity, focus and creativity. If you’re looking for more physical energy, try out their coffee with Cordyceps. Bonus: Four Sigmatic also makes coffee with cacao for some extra antioxidants and a chocolatey flavor!
Quantity Is Key
Remember that one cup of coffee contains about 95 milligrams of caffeine, and dietary guidelines recommend no more than 400 milligrams per day, which equals about four cups. However, if you’re feeling an imbalance in your energy levels, pouring that extra cup may not be the answer. Instead, check out your diet. Getting enough nutrients in your diet can help regulate your energy levels as well as staying hydrated with plenty of water.
Tea, on the other hand, is rich in tannins and polyphenols and can improve cardiovascular health and even help strengthen our immune systems. Tannin is an organic compound that provides a natural calming effect. Green tea, like coffee, is rich in antioxidants and may also help reduce your risk of cancer. There are also different teas for different ailments. Try ginger tea for tummy upset, dandelion tea for liver detox and red raspberry tea for women’s hormone imbalances.
If you’re looking for a lower dose of caffeine, tea may be a better choice. Black tea contains only about 50 milligrams in a single cup and green tea contains about 40 milligrams.
Additives Add Up!
Don’t forget that what you add to your cup matters too. We suggest skipping the heavy cream and sugar. Instead, if you’re not a fan of black coffee, try adding a local nut milk such as Nutty Life Cashew Milk. It’s delicious and available in our store! For tea, consider adding a lemon wedge for some extra flavor.
Overview of Coffee & Tea, In Partnership with Wellness
While these beverages may help us get out the door and start our day, they aren’t a replacement for a good night’s sleep. A cup of coffee or tea may just serve as a helpful and healthy boost to an already balanced diet and regular sleep schedule.
Bridgitte Carroll is a functional dietitian at Johnson Compounding & Wellness in Waltham, Mass. She is currently accepting new clients. You can email her at email@example.com or schedule an appointment here.