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Espresso and Health: An Espresso A Day...?

By: Charlie Voss

An Espresso A Day … ?

While many of us enjoy—indeed, rely on—our morning coffee, we haven’t been able to shake the popular theory that the caffeine content makes coffee bad for the body. Espresso, a concentrated beverage, has been especially maligned. But there are numerous health benefits to drinking coffee, some of which may surprise you, and might help you enjoy that freshly brewed cup just a little bit more.

Even the harshest skeptic is aware of the short-term benefits of coffee: the pick-me-up it provides when we’re feeling drowsy, the enhanced sense of mental alertness, and the increased motor activity. The long-term advantages, however, are more far-reaching.

Studies have shown that brewed coffee contains numerous antioxidants, a critical element in disease prevention and control. Specifically, tests have linked moderate coffee consumption with reducing the risk of a diverse range of illnesses, including:
* Alzheimer’s disease
* Asthma
* Cirrhosis of the liver
* Colon cancer
* Diabetes
* Gallstones
* Parkinson’s disease
At the same time, recent research has disproved the prevailing wisdom that excessive coffee drinking can cause birth defects and cardiovascular disease.

This is welcome news to the millions of us who need our morning coffee, whether it’s our preferred freshly ground brew, that scalding paper cup of Joe from the local diner, or an espresso-based nonfat macchiato from Starbucks. However, the negative effects of excessive caffeine intake cannot be ignored. The key is to know what constitutes a “moderate” amount of consumption.

An average cup of coffee has between 100 and 150 milligrams of caffeine, with the average espresso containing 80-120 milligrams. Most experts agree that we can drink up to 300 milligrams of caffeine per day without experiencing any long-term negative effects. As such, two to three cups of coffee daily gives us the most benefit with the least risk. However, the 300 milligrams is a measure of total caffeine consumption. If you drink sodas, which can contain anywhere from 0-60 milligrams of caffeine, you must balance your caffeine intake accordingly.

Those of us who love our coffee can enjoy it with the knowledge that, far from being detrimental to our health, a few cups a day can provide a needed burst of energy and help reduce the risk of common diseases. To find out more about coffee and the best products for your household, visit www.espressozone.com, www.cooking.com, and www.kitchen-universe.com. These comprehensive sites will help you select the best types of coffee, coffee-makers, and accessories to indulge your coffee needs—in moderation, naturally.

Charlie Voss provides helpful and entertaining information on choosing an espresso machine and offers the latest findings on the products and craft of making espresso at home. For more information please visit: http://www.bestespressomakers.com/.

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