Coffee is one of the most popular drinks in the world. Every day, the average American drinks two to three cups.
But why do we love coffee so much? Aside from the rich flavor, the caffeine in coffee — the most popular psychoactive drug in the world — helps wake us up, brighten our day, and gives us a natural energy boost. The caffeine in coffee is good for your brain.
But it has to be the right kind of coffee. Conventional coffee is grown using chemical fertilizers, herbicides, and pesticides. In fact, coffee is one of the most sprayed food products in the world. The residues from these chemicals affect the flavor of the coffee, reduce its nutritional value, and can have harmful effects on your health.
Organic coffee, on the other hand, is grown without chemical fertilizers, pesticides, or herbicides, usually at the high altitudes that are the coffee plant’s natural habitat. The organically grown coffee ripens at its natural pace and develops a rich, full flavor that chemical-laced conventional coffee just can’t match.
Organic coffee is also high in vitamins such as riboflavin and niacin, and a good source of minerals such as magnesium and potassium. It’s even a good source of soluble fiber.
Most importantly, organic coffee is high in natural antioxidants that help prevent many chronic health problems. In fact, for antioxidant value coffee is way ahead of superfoods like blueberries and kale.
The health benefits of organic coffee are clear. But what if you could make your coffee even healthier by turning it into a functional beverage full of extra nutrients?
Because coffee is an aqueous solution — you swallow the liquid, not the grounds — it’s easy to blend in some healthy additions without affecting the flavor or brewing method. And you get the benefits every time you enjoy a cup.
Functional additions that support brain health include alpha GPC, taurine, and L-theanine.
Alpha GPC boosts cognition and provides the essential nutrient choline, needed to build neurotransmitters such as serotonin in the brain.
The essential amino acid taurine helps grow new brain cells, improves cognition, recall, and short-term memory, and improves focus.
The amino acid L-theanine enhances mental focus and attention, improves alertness, and works synergistically with caffeine for sustained energy.
To support your joints, add collagen (in the forms of type I, type II, and type III) to your coffee. Collagen is the most abundant protein in the human body. It’s vital for structural integrity and gives your joints elasticity and strength. Getting collagen with your daily coffee is an easy way to be sure you’re getting enough of this crucial nutrient.
Twenty years of experience with patients has taught me that the gut is the epicenter of your health. Adding a prebiotic and probiotic supplement to your daily coffee is one of the best ways to support your gut bacteria and help them stay balanced and healthy.
For a prebiotic, I suggest xylooligosaccharides (XOS), a plant fiber that helps the healthy bacteria in your gut flourish — and crowds out the unfriendly bacteria.
For a probiotic, look for a product that contains the bacteria strain Bacillus subtilis. Getting these supplements through your daily coffee means you never forget to take them — the functional benefits are built into your morning routine.
I recommend an organic coffee with added functional nutrients that are designed to support your gut, brain, and joints.
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