Coffee is believed to have originated in Ethiopia. There is a legend that says that a great goat herder noticed his goats getting excited after eating some berries from a tree. The local monastery he belonged to suggested to dry and boil the berries. That was the world's first cup of coffee.
Today coffee is one of the most popular beverages around as you see cafe's in every corner. Drinking a good cup of coffee can be described as a comforting feeling as if getting a warm hug. Within seconds a rush of feel good transmitters begins scintillating your brain. Focus, alertness, and a general sense of well being is felt. These effects are the reason many people cannot go a day without their cup of coffee.
Why not drink coffee?
Here are a few reasons coffee can be harmful to you.
- Overstimulates adrenal glands and nervous system
- Depletes tissues
- Large amounts of coffee will rob your body of minerals
Should you switch to Decaf?
During coffee processing, methylene chloride is used to make coffee decaffeinated. This pulls out the caffeine, then flavors are added. This compound is used for paint stripping, degreasing, and metal cleaning. To say its toxic is an understatement. There are some companies that don't use this but not many since the process is extremely expensive.
Ayurvedic View Of Coffee
Knowing you original constitution and current doshic imbalance is important to see if coffee will help you or harm you. The rasa (taste) of coffee is mainly bitter and astringent and it also has a warming and stimulating effect.
For both vata (air) and pitta (fire) constitutions, coffee is usually not recommended. The nervous system is dominated by the air element and coffee tends to stimulate this air element. This can cause anxiety, nervous disorders, and insomnia. Knowing this, Vata's should avoid coffee, specially if they have a chronic vata imbalance. People who are predominantly pitta have a tendency towards acidity and usually have intense personalities. With coffee's acidity and stimulating actions, it is not their best choice. Coffee is perfect for kapha dominant people, as they do need the stimulation, acidity, and warmth.
If you cannot see yourself without coffee and you are a vata or pitta constitution, no need to worry. You can still have your cup of Joe if you don't have an excessive vata or pitta imbalance.
Taking into account the time of day is important. Kapha times are 6a to 10 am, and this will be the best times for vata and pitta to have their cup. You can also make some modifications to your coffee. By adding some spices and oil we can make a tridoshic coffee.
Single espresso shot (Nespresso or any other)
Coco oil 1 tsp
Coco sugar 1/2 tsp
Cardamom: stimulates digestion, alleviates intestinal spasms and pain, redirects the flow of vata downwards, increases sexual potency, sattvic (brings joy)
Cinnamon: alleviates vata and kapha, increases appetite, destroys toxins, cardiac tonic, imparts strength, increases semen
Coco sugar: derived from coconut palm tree. Has a glycemic index of 35 compared to regular sugar which is 60 to 75. It also contains trace minerals of iron, zinc, calcium, potassium, and inulin.
Coconut oil: Contains medium chain fatty acids which help breakthrough the brain barrier. Coconut oil helps prevent the caffeine crash.
In conclusion, coffee is good for most people with little adjustments. Many studies have shown benefits in cognitive abilities, with its compound trigonelline it can lower blood sugar, with its rich source of polyphenols it acts as a strong antioxidant. Make sure to avoid coffee if you have excess vata or pitta, seizures, heart palpitations, muscle tics, and other nervous system disorders.