When people ask me to “pick my poison,” I always reply, “Caffeine.”
A warm mug is my version of stemware at parties and gatherings, and I’m the first one at the percolator in the morning. I admit it; I am a coffee and tea lover.
Since September 29 is National Coffee Day, I have invaded the endless sea of social media infographics to find some facts about this cozy cup of warm caffeine addition.
Some quick facts, according to a list compiled by the health and fitness site Greatist:
1. Coffee beans are berries.
2. Around 52 percent of Americans drink coffee daily, and the average coffee drinker can fill a bathtub with the amount of coffee they drink each year. This is roughly 70 gallons.
3. It is a myth that coffee will stunt your growth or give you heart disease and stomach cancer. However, it will increase restlessness, insomnia, and anxiety if over-consumed. About four cups a day for men, and three cups for women is fine.
In 2011, the British insurance company Policy Expert compiled the health facts some healthy, as well as not-so-healthy tidbits about coffee and tea. Some of the coffee-centric facts, good and bad, include:
1. People who drink coffee have been found less likely to suffer Alzheimer’s disease later in life.
2. Studies have shown there are properties in coffee that can raise cholesterol.
3. Some chemicals found in coffee could be used to make new drugs that treat heart disease and insomnia.
4. Since there are more than 1,000 chemicals found in roasted coffee, 19 of them are known carcinogens.
5. Coffee protects the liver against threats like cirrhosis and liver cancer.
6. One Denmark-based study showed women who drank eight or more cups of coffee a day significantly increased the risk of stillbirths.
The blog site Happy to Serve You has also created a graphic dedicated to the “Medical Benefits of Being Addicted to Coffee.” The site offers prints of this infographic for purchase, with a portion of the proceeds going towards the charity Coffee Kids. The charity works to better the lives of children in coffee-farming communities throughout Latin America.
Some of this infographic’s claims:
1. Moderate (not excessive) consumption of caffeine during pregnancy does not have any negative effects, contrary to popular belief.
2. Women who drink two or more cups of coffee a day have a 20 percent lower risk of stroke than those who drink none.
3. Four cups of coffee a day reduces the risk of getting type 2 diabetes.
Whether or not my fellow coffee drinkers will look at these items with skepticism, hope or dread, there is a good chance they are craving a cup right now. The consumer site Surviving the Stores has created a comprehensive list of the places where acquiring a cup of java may be a little bit easier on National Coffee Day. Some of the places that offer, or have offered, National Coffee deals, including samples or a free cup of coffee, are McDonalds, Dunkin’ Donuts, Krispy Kreme, Starbucks, Einstein Bros. Bagels, and 7-Eleven.
From one coffee drinker to another, enjoy a cup on me, provided it’s a free one.