How Healthy are Your Coffee Drinking Habits?

 

We Malaysians might be known for our love for teh tarik; but having morning coffee is an extremely common routine many Malaysians exercise daily. It seems as if when someone declares they don't drink coffee, they're bombarded with the same question every time: "how do you function?"  Besides the surprised reactions, I've personally witnessed a few people go on complete informative speeches on how coffee it good for them and that they should jump onto the caffeine train. Though there are scientific studies that show coffee possess health benefits, most people don't realize that they might be consuming their brew in ways that can totally cancel all the benefits out. 

 

Coffee lovers are truly a diverse bunch of people. Almost every person I've met prefers their drink in a different way; and with different routines comes different levels of health advantages/disavtanges. Think for moment, how healthy do you think your habits are?  Here's a generalized list of different types of coffee lovers that might include you or even someone you know; and of course, any downsides that comes with it:

1) Average Joe

The Average Joe takes his coffee plain and black; no funny business. That's it. They simply enjoy the raw taste and refuse to add anything else. If you identify with Joe, you're probably in the clear. Good on you! Keep doing what you're doing and don't let the comments of others calling you "boring" get to you; I'm sure your barista appreciates your extremely simple order.

 2) Coffee "Lover" 

Okay, this type of person orders a latte, shamelessly makes their way to the condiment bar and proceeds to add endless packets of sugar into their drink. It may not even stop there, they might even add some syrup and some more milk. Bonus points are given to them if they ask for whipped cream on top with their order. I feel like this doesn't even need to be said, but this causes more harm than good; especially if it's being consumed on a daily basis. My advice to the Coffee "Lover"? Milo would be a cheaper and easier replacement. 

3) I Can Quit Any Time I Want

Cups and cups and cups of coffee. Their entire performance as a human being relies on their precious cups of venti coffees throughout the entire day. It doesn't matter if they have it black or with minimal milk/sugar, it's a caffeine overkill. Everything has to be taken in moderation; so even though caffeine is good for the body, too much caffeine has negative long term effects and can actually kill you. Plus, if someone is ingesting that much coffee in a day, they are most likely physically and/or psychologically addicted to the caffeine. Caffeine is a drug and withdrawals are a real thing; most common being headaches and being incurably sleepy. This habit of consuming coffee is bad not only for your bodily health, but also your mental health. 

4) Shopping List

What's the order for today? They deliberate between an "Iced, Half Caff, Ristretto, Venti, 4-Pump, Sugar Free, Cinnamon, Dolce Soy Skinny Latte", "Grande, Iced, Sugar-Free, Vanilla Latte With Soy Milk", or even a "Grande, Quad, Nonfat, One-Pump, No-Whip, Mocha."  Okay, I will admit this is a pretty large exaggeration, but you get what I'm trying to say.  There's not much to point out with an over-the-top and obnoxious coffee order except that the people behind them in-line probably rolled their eyes so far back, they took a glimpse of their own brain. It's hard to say whether or not this practice is particularly healthy or not. To keep things moderate, excessive sugar and dairy should not be part of your order; the only excessive thing there should be is the barista's irritation. 

 5) Coffee Flavored Water

I get it, not everyone wants to spend RM15 on coffee every morning. These coffee drinkers insist on spending RM15 on a pack of instant coffee instead. They might even get them for no price at all if they end up in a hotel that stocks them in rooms under no charge. Take them home without shame, it's the same as taking home their free soaps and shampoos, right? Price difference aside, instant coffee is still extremely quick and easy, saving 10-15 minutes on a visit to the coffee shop. If you drink instant coffee, you'd be pleased to find that it holds the same antioxidants and health benefits to regular coffee. One of the downsides is that it contains less caffeine, meaning you'd just have to consume more quantities for the same amount of caffeine; a small price to pay for a significant reduction of money and time spent. 

 

Coffee enthusiasts comes in all shapes and forms. Remember, someone saying "coffee is good for you" is a blanket statement. We should try to keep in mind that personal habits is very important. It comes down to determining whether or not what you're doing is going to be appreciated by your body or not.