|Coffee , java, joe|
|RUBIACEAE Madder Family|
- Common Uses: * Asthma * Headache
- Properties: Nervine* Stimulant*
- Parts Used: beans
- Constituents: caffeine, chlorogenic acid, theobromine
- See Also : Guarana *Kola Nut *Tea *Yerba Mate *
I have a three to four cup a day coffee habit, not uncommon among those of us who spend most of the workday at a desk, pecking at a keyboard for a living. Americans consume the equivalent of 500 cups per person - per year and import half of the worlds coffee crop. Caffeine is the world's most widely used central nervous system stimulant, with approximately 80% consumed in the form of coffee.
Coffee's reputation as America's favorite bad habit has been somewhat redeemed recently. Many recent reports in the scientific literature pointing to the many benefits of coffee including lower rates of strokes, diabetes, prostate cancer and depression among caffeinated coffee drinkers when compared to non-coffee drinkers.
The caffeine in coffee and tea is a chemical cousin to the asthma drug theophylline, drinking coffee and caffeinated teas can help calm an asthma attack and stop coughing spasms. Doctors at the Diamond Headache Clinic in Chicago, Illinois, have found that the common painkiller, ibuprofen, is more active against tension headaches when combined with caffeine.
As in all things balance is key, coffee's worst aspect may be that it crowds out the many other healthy herbal teas and drinks we should be consuming during the course of the day.
Nursing mothers who drink coffee might transfer the caffeine to their babies, giving them insomnia. Don't take mineral supplements with your morning cup of coffee as it may impede your body's absorption of calcium, magnesium, iron and other nutrients. Coffee is very special to me in the morning. I wake up each day with the aches, pains and stiffness of rheumatoid arthritis, some days worse than others. Coffee increases circulation, and increases the potency of NSAIDs, which we arthritics also take in the morning. But please, not together. Spare your stomach, drink plenty of water, and eat before taking any meds. Sip the coffee slowly and enjoy it after breakfast.