According to an analysis by the Institute for Scientific Information on Coffee (ISIC), global online searches for “health benefits of drinking coffee” increased by 650 percent over the last 12 months. The majority of searches were for information about health, such as nutritional values, caffeine content, and the link between coffee and dementia.
“The research reveals a great deal about public interest in coffee’s known health benefits. As a result of the pandemic, some people are becoming more aware of what they eat and drink and proactive in learning about the effects on their health,” Dr. J.W. Langer, a medical doctor, lecturer, and science journalist, tells FoodIngredientsFirst.
“Intriguingly, the data indicates that consumers are most interested in coffee’s association with health-related issues such as nutrition, hypertension, and dementia,” he says.
The top ten topics of interest range from caffeine consumption levels to nutritional value and associations between coffee and various health conditions. Searches for “coffee and caffeine” were frequently entered to determine the caffeine content of a cup.
“Recent research indicates that drinking coffee in moderation can contribute to a healthy balanced lifestyle, lowering the risk of a variety of conditions such as heart and liver disease and possibly lowering the risk of stroke and dementia,” Langer explains.
“The evidence suggests that drinking 2-3 cups of coffee per day may reduce your risk of developing a variety of conditions. In some, but not all, conditions, decaffeinated coffee produces comparable results,” he says.
Additionally, approximately 32% stated that they drank coffee at regular intervals to break up their day at home or when they could relax, and 35% of coffee drinkers stated that they now value their coffee breaks more.
According to the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), moderate caffeine consumption, around 400 mg per day, or up to five cups, is safe when combined with a healthy balanced diet and an active lifestyle.
Each cup contains an equal amount of caffeine.
Caffeine is a significant component of coffee, with a cup of coffee containing between 75 and 100 mg of caffeine. The EFSA concluded that a 75 mg serving of caffeine increases attention (concentration) and alertness. This can be advantageous in a variety of situations, including safety and performance during night shifts, nighttime driving, and coping with jet lag.
“Some individuals may be more sensitive to caffeine and should adjust their intake accordingly; for example, those who find that drinking coffee later in the day impairs their ability to sleep may wish to avoid coffee in the afternoon and evening,” Langer explains.
“At the same time, some may wish to consider the nutritional value of ingredients such as milk or cream, as well as sweeteners such as honey or sugar,” he adds.