I am always surprised when clients tell me that they gave up coffee when expressing their intent to get healthier. I always reply, “Why?” Now, I am not speaking to you as a farm girl with my second cup of steaming, strong coffee beside me, but rather as a Master Herbalist, which is my job. Coffee has a myriad of medicinal traits and not a one bad. Let’s set the record straight, shall we?
Now despite all of the research and articles coming out about the positive benefits of coffee (and indeed caffeine), for some reason the old myth dies hard. Hold onto your coffee cup folks, coffee is good for you!
Here are just a few of the benefits and things we use it for in our apothecary:
Cognitive support. Studies show (and any student before a test) that coffee improves thinking and memory. Drinking coffee slows dementia and Alzheimer’s.
Circulatory system support. Coffee is a blood thinner. Don’t fall into that, if you are taking Coumadin, you can’t take herbal blood thinners, not so. You see, herbs balance and heal. They don’t overdo it. So you will not bleed to death taking an herbal blood thinner. Because the blood is thinner, it is flowing more freely, increasing energy, helping toxins escape the blood stream, and decreasing clots and blockages. Because it is a blood thinner, it also acts as a pain reliever, particularly with headaches.
Endocrine and Lymphatic support. Coffee is a mild diuretic and mild laxative which helps cleanse toxins from the organs. It also helps repair the adrenals. Shocked? Don’t be! It is a common myth that coffee damages the adrenals. Artificial stimulants like artificial sweeteners and energy drinks burn out the adrenals. Do you know what the number one reason is for adrenal fatigue is? Stress. That fight or flight response is only supposed to be used to get you out of imminent danger, not through traffic.
Anti-cancer. Coffee is a plant therefore it is full of anti-oxidants. Coffee contains powerful disease fighting phytochemicals and antioxidants. By increasing plant intake, including coffee, tea, wine, juice, etc., the body becomes more oxygenated. Cancer and other diseases cannot survive in an oxygenated environment.
Respiratory system support. A cup of coffee can help ward off an asthma attack. Children can drink it too. It opens the airways and allows more oxygen in. (Coffee is good for children too! It does not stunt their growth. If it does stunt one’s growth then I am thankful as I am already almost six feet tall and don’t need to get any taller! I have been drinking coffee since I was very young.)
Coffee is in the category of healthy stimulants that we use as herbalists to help with various issues from chronic fatigue to memory loss. Other stimulants that are good for the system are ginseng, gingko, ephedra, and green tea. Unlike their lab created counterparts in pharmaceutical and health store supplements, the straight herbs are extremely healing and extremely safe.
I hope this helps you enjoy your cup of java in the mornings before chores that much more. To your health. I think I’ll pour another cup.