Enjoying the Taste and Health Benefits of Organic Coffee
You may be one of the several million people out there who have made coffee the second most consumed beverage on the planet. Perhaps you might have even been warned that you’re having too many cups of Joe.
This energizing drink is known to spice up your mornings and help you stay perky and perform at your best the whole day. Many people believe that this drink can also give you unhealthy doses of caffeine. What they do not realize is that there are plenty of other benefits that can be gained from drinking coffee.
What is Organic Coffee
The best coffee for your body is organic coffee. Coffee is traditionally grown in the shade as its leaves cannot stand direct sunlight. In the places where it is locally grown, it is grown among other fruit trees. Because coffee is grown in partial darkness, it grows quite slowly like other shade plants.
Using this traditional method and avoiding any synthetic fertilizers available in the market make the coffee ‘qualified’ to be labeled as ‘organically made.’ The leaves that fall from the nearby trees as well as supplied animal manure are used as natural fertilizers. The natural surroundings also provide organic pest control protection against insects because of the various animals that are encouraged to take refuge in the plantation.
Health Benefits of Organic Coffee
Here are some reasons why drinking organic coffee is good for you:
- It gives you a caffeine boost – this substance is the first thing that comes to mind when coffee is mentioned. It stimulates the brain to produce more dopamine and serotonin, the chemicals linked to joy and enthusiasm. These chemicals also combat depression and give you increased levels of energy throughout the day.
- It is full of Antioxidants – coffee may not have the levels of antioxidants found in some fruits, such as blueberries, but it has an advantage over fruits. It is available and accessible to more people. It is also cheaper. Drinking an average of 3.4 cups a day gives coffee drinkers a good dose of antioxidants like polyphenol.
Each cup has a high polyphenol content. This antioxidant destroys free radicals that cause inflammations in the body. With more antioxidants in the body, there are less chances for it to suffer from an inflammation.
- It also comes in decaffeinated variants – when you’ve had a little too much caffeine, you can enjoy the decaffeinated version of your organic coffee. It still has the coffee taste and flavor you are looking for but without the energizing jolt of caffeine.
- It tastes better – organic coffee just naturally tastes better. Healthier does not always mean that it’s not going to be enjoyable to the palate. There are actually a lot of organic food products that taste more delicious than their unhealthy versions.
- It does not have any trace of pesticides – the chemicals and pesticides sprayed on fruits and vegetables as they are grown are not good for you. You do not have to worry about these substances when you choose to drink organic coffee.
Benefits of Organic Coffee Farming
Organic coffee does not only have health benefits for the body. It also has benefits for the environment and the community where it is grown. Here are some of the good things that organic coffee farming offers:
- Safer farming practices – planting organic coffee means that the farmers would not have to handle and be exposed to harmful chemicals and pesticides.
- Financially sound – organic coffee farming supports and improves the livelihood of farmers. It saves them money on the cost of chemicals, protective suits and gear, and treatments for chemical burns.
- Prevention of deforestation – the increasing demand of coffee, plus the fact that they grow slowly under the shade of trees, means that the demand will surpass the supply and create shortages.
While the quickest response to this is to plant new coffee variants that can withstand direct sunlight, take in nutrients more efficiently, and grow faster, this is not environmentally sound.
Organic coffee farming or planting shade-grown coffee requires trees growing nearby. This protects against deforestation and encourages wildlife to thrive.
- Prevention of soil erosion – tree roots anchoring the soil around them are among nature’s natural defenses against the ravages of erosion. Organic grown coffee and the trees around it do just that.
- Retention of soil nutrients – using synthetic fertilizers on coffee crops greatly increases their growth speed, no matter the planting location for it is specially made to be ready-to-be-absorbed by the roots.
The problem with this is that, while crop yield will be significantly higher, the soil underneath will be barren of any nutrients since the fertilizers are designed to only cater to the plants and trees and nothing else.
Natural ground-dwelling bacteria will be doused with a high concentration of these chemicals, effectively killing them. Without them, natural ground minerals cannot break down, halting the soil nutrient cycle.
Using animal manure, on the other hand, slows down growth but allows these underground communities to do their work. Organic coffee plantations are whole ecosystems that can thrive with the right attention.
- Prevention of pesticide contamination – pesticides are a huge problem when they seep into the ground, contaminating the water table and bringing in a new host of dangerous diseases. Any unsuspecting person could be exposed to such diseases.
Ground contaminated by strong pesticides makes it even harder for the bacteria to return as even a tiny dose could prove lethal to them. Even if animal manure is used on contaminated soil, it will not break down and the coffee will grow without the necessary minerals they need to produce quality coffee beans. This can potentially alter the taste of coffee.
Pesticides also affect the surrounding environment. Dangerous chemicals can kill nearby wildlife residing within the ‘coffee forest.’
Backtracking on Conventional Coffee
If organic coffee is all good for you, where does that leave your regular coffee? You’ve been drinking commercial variants for so long and you might be thinking that you’re fine anyway and are not feeling any ill effects.
Conventional coffee is cheaper and widely available. The flavor is also not bad – you’ve loved it for years anyhow. There’s really no cause for worry if you’ve been drinking conventional coffee.
Now that you know the benefits of organic coffee, to the drinker, the farmer, and the community, perhaps it’s high time that you consider it as a healthier and wiser alternative. Find out more about where you can get organic coffee in your area. Ask about what farming practices were used in producing the coffee beans.
You might come across information about new pesticides that are bird-safe and are used in farms with chickens. There are pesticides that are all natural and organic, and thus safe for humans. Growers of organic coffee will be transparent about what products and practices they use in farming.
Whether you love to drink your coffee as espresso shots, Americanos, lattes, or frappes, it’s good to learn about what’s in your favorite beverage. Doing so will allow you to make wiser choices so you do not unnecessarily expose yourself to health risks. Healthier choices mean that you can enjoy drinking more cups of Joe for many more years.