The Health Benefits of Coffee and the Best Way to Brew it


Not all coffee is created the same, how it is prepared makes a huge difference

By Greg Holt

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(TCP News)  I like coffee a lot, and I like to think of myself as a coffee aficionado or a coffee snob if you will.  The old hype about coffee being bad for you is just plain inaccurate for the most part.  Just like eating eggs isn’t going to kill you, neither is drinking coffee.

Just a note here, those with high blood pressure DO need to be careful with their coffee consumption.  Those who are sensitive to caffeine for any reason also need to be careful. But in general, coffee is not at all bad for you and in fact it actually has some rather surprising health benefits.

Coffee can boost your metabolism, even at rest.  Who doesn’t need or want that?

The caffeine in your morning Joe will not only often help you to function better (especially those of us who are sleep deprived), but it can lift your mood and increase brain function. My brain needs all the help it can get some days (be nice, so does yours at times if you are honest).

This next health benefit is fantastic.  Drinking coffee may reduce your risk of heart disease. Morning coffee anyone?

Coffee includes:

Caffeine, phenolic compounds, magnesium, trigonelline, quinides, and lignans.  These little beauties help to stabilize blood sugar, and lower blood pressure.  Coffee also acts as an antioxidant and an anti-inflammatory agent.  Pretty cool right?

Coffee drinkers can also reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes by up to a whopping 30%!

Since coffee can be an effective tool to use in stimulating our brains, another subsequent effect of drinking coffee can be a reduction in the risk of developing Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases.  Up to 65% less chance of developing these deadly diseases.

Brewing coffee – how you brew your brew is very important.  Everybody has their own preference of course, and that’s normal.  We can’t all be the same right?

Here’s the deal – cold brewed coffee simply tastes better.  It is also without a doubt easier on your stomach.  Why is that?  To answer both of those statements, cold brewed coffee contains less acid.  I know some say may contain less acid, but from my experience, this is not a maybe.

When you cold brew coffee instead of quickly passing hot water over the coffee grounds, the taste of your brew is consistently smoother.  To be honest, you can achieve less acid in your coffee if you use a Bunn or similar coffee maker as they cause the water to pass through the grounds quicker than a standard coffee maker like Mr. Coffee for instance. Cold brewing is still far superior.

Just a quick note here, if you do use a Bunn coffee maker, and you have issues with the grounds ending up in your coffee pot (because the grounds overflow the top of the filter due to the water velocity), buy yourself some regular coffee filters, and place a filter inside the first filter and on top of the coffee grounds.  This should fix the problem.  Or you can remove the coffee maker’s sprayer head, glue/cement the holes shut and then re-drill them a smaller size.  The filter trick is easier though.

Back to cold brewing:

To start with, I always recommend buying your favorite coffee in whole bean form.  Fresh ground coffee will always yield a better tasting coffee.  Freshly ground coffee is not all dried out – yes coffee can and does dry out to some extent.  The freshly ground variety contains more oils, and we definitely want those coffee bean oils in our coffee.  Here’s another reason, ground coffee can and will absorb the odors in the air, including odors inside your refrigerator, sounds tasty right – NOT.  Get the 411 on fresh ground coffee beans at Homegrounds.

To cold brew, grind your beans to a rough consistency, you do not want the beans ground up fine like you would use in a standard coffee maker.  I bought an automatic grinder that I set to rough grind and voilà, the beans are ground to perfection every time.

Many sites say to place the grounds directly in the water, and then when done brewing, to filter the coffee through cheesecloth or something similar.  This is way too much work, and is completely unnecessary.

Instead, buy yourself some Bunn (because these filters are taller than standard filters are) coffee filters and dump your coffee in the filter, and then “tie” the filter shut with a twisty tie.  I found some plastic coated ones on Amazon that are 8 inches long and these work perfectly.  When the coffee is done, take out the filter bag, and throw it away, no straining needed.

Your cold brew should brew for at least 24 hours, and you can brew it for up to 48 hours if you want to.  I actually leave the filter full of grounds right in the coffee until the coffee is gone.  I usually let my coffee “brew” for 24 hours.

I have a half-gallon glass jar (don’t use plastic!) that I use to brew my coffee and this works really well.  You can also use a coffee pot of course.  I like the glass jar because I can cover it with Saran wrap while it is brewing.

This may be blindingly obvious, but I’m going to throw this out there anyway.  The quality of your water makes a huge difference in the quality and taste of your coffee.  I filter all of my water using a Berkey water filtration system.  I mention Berkey only because their filters last a long time (easily two years when cleaned regularly), and the water quality after filtration is outstanding.

A small disclaimer here: the products I mentioned are trademarked and owned by their respective companies.  I do not sell these products, and have nothing to do with any of them.  I make $0 from mentioning them.  I mention them for you the reader’s benefit, as they are effective and of excellent quality.

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