Personally, my number one way to get a pick-me-up when I desperately need one, is through a good old cup-of-joe. I don’t need anything fancy like those frappa-whatevers and those mocchi-so-and-so’s. But, once in a while I can definitely indulge…but anyway; truckers know the importance of loading up on energy-boosting benefits to keep alert on the road. However, I’ve heard so many people discourage the use of caffeine. In recent studies though, it seems that the positive things that come from caffeine are totally out-weighing the negatives.
Caffeine has exceptional benefits that can be an absolute blessing for truck drivers. It can boost your metabolism, create higher bone density, reduce risks of heart disease or diabetes, and are an awesome antioxidant!
In fact; according to WebMD:
- Some researchers suggest that the caffeine in coffee may increase the body’s sensitivity to insulin. (This is a good thing; insulin is a hormone made by the body to control blood sugar.) In fact, a recent review of nine studies on coffee consumption and risk of type 2 diabetes supports the idea that habitual coffee consumption is associated with a lower risk of the disease. Other research has found that some compounds in tea may increase insulin activity in fat cells by as much as 15 times. Still, other research has reported that caffeine impairs the metabolism of glucose (a type of sugar found in carbohydrate foods) in people with type 2 diabetes.
- Chlorogenic acid, a compound in coffee that has antioxidant activity, may improve the body’s metabolism of glucose.
- Drinking four or more cups of coffee a day has been linked to a reduced risk of colon cancer (compared with drinking no coffee at all). Studies in animals have indicated that an antioxidant in coffee may protect against colon cancer.
- Studies looking at coffee and heart disease risk are all over the map. One study found that drinking two or fewer cups of coffee a day reduced the chance of a first heart attack or chest pain, while drinking more coffee appeared to have the opposite effect. Other study results differed. Future research should pay attention to the type of coffee used and the different brewing methods because this affects which compounds show up in your cup. For example, filtered coffee removes two compounds that are known to raise both total and LDL “bad” cholesterol levels (the filters trap these compounds).
- Tea contains powerful antioxidants (polyphenols, which are in the flavonoid phytochemical family) that may help protect against cancer, heart disease, and stroke. A Dutch study found that men who ate and drank the most flavonoids (black tea was the major source) had a much lower risk of heart disease.
- Preliminary research suggests that the flavonoids in green tea may help reduce cancer risk.
- More research is needed on this, but it has been suggested that green tea may help boost metabolism and lower body fat.
- According to one study, older women (aged 65-76) who drank tea had higher bone mineral density measurements than women who did not drink tea. The authors propose that the compounds in tea may improve bone mineral density and that drinking tea may protect against osteoporosis. By comparison, another study noted that consuming more than 300 mg of caffeine per day sped up bone loss in the spines of postmenopausal women aged 65-77.
- While fruits and vegetables are thought to be the richest sources of health-promoting antioxidants, a recent study found that coffee is the main source from which most Americans get their antioxidants.
Black coffee, when drank in moderation, supposedly has a lot of added benefits that I never really knew before. Sure, we all know that it can be that helpful boost in the morning; but who knew it could possibly also crank up your metabolism?! Plus, it contains one of the highest contents of caffeine out of any other drink. So if you’re only drinking something for the pep and not the taste, coffee is definitely the best option. It has about 138 mg of caffeine per serving which is almost 5 times the amount you receive from soda. An adult can safely indulge in 4 cups of coffee daily without an side-effects.
Hot tea has about the same amount of caffeine as soda, but it is actually good for you. Plus there’s so many different types. It’s cheap, delicious, a great source of energy and is even really soothing if you ever end up with a cold or sore throat. Whether your poison of choice be earl grey, black, green, mango, or what-have-you; the skies the limit with tea.
Although caffeine can possibly have a lot of great benefits; I recommend getting it from coffee and tea….NOT soda and energy drinks. Also, don’t overdo the caffeine-intake or you’ll be stuck with some major jitters or coffee-withdrawal headaches in the future.