Coffee is a giant ($48 billion per year) retail business in the U.S., where about 75%
of adults drink coffee from time to time. At an average of about three cups a day,
coffee is a pervasive daily ritual for 54% of Americans age 18 and older. Coffee
contains more than 1000 chemicals, and the health effects of coffee are still being
explored. There may be some modest benefits from drinking coffee, perhaps related
mainly to its content of antioxidants, and little evidence of harm beyond the side
effects of caffeine habituation.

Coffee has about 100 mg. of the stimulant caffeine in a 6 oz. cup. There is considerable
variation in susceptibility to the side effects of caffeine; for example, some
people metabolize it up to four times faster than others. Too much caffeine—more
than 300 mg per day—may cause insomnia and nervousness, and slow metabolizers
may be at increased risk of heart attack and hypertension. Among coffee drinkers,
liver disease, type 2 diabetes, colon cancer, prostate cancer, and some other
cancers appear to be a little less likely. Altogether, the evidence suggests that
there is no health-related reason not to drink coffee but no strong reason to start
drinking coffee based on health benefits.

Tea is the most widely consumed beverage in the world after water. Many of the
same potential benefits of coffee are similar for tea. Studies have shown inconsistent
but mostly beneficial effects of tea on diabetes, heart disease, stroke, neurodegenerative
diseases, and obesity. Tea has not conclusively been shown to decrease
the risk of cancer. Unless it is decaffeinated, tea has, on average, 40 mg of
caffeine per 6 oz. cup, less than coffee at 100 mg. per cup, but still a factor for those
who are sensitive to caffeine. It is best to avoid green tea supplements. Like many
dietary supplements, they are unproven to have benefits and are not proven to be
safe. Studies suggest that “Tea’s effects in the body are still not fully understood,
but don’t expect it to prevent heart disease, cancer or any other condition on its

This blog presents opinions and ideas and is intended to provide helpful general information. I am not engaged in rendering advice or services to the individual reader. The ideas, procedures and suggestions in that are presented are not in any way a substitute for the advice and care of the reader’s own physician or other medical professional based on the reader’s own individual conditions, symptoms or concerns. If the reader needs personal medical, health, dietary, exercise or other assistance or advice the reader should consult a physician and/or other qualified health professionals. The author specifically disclaims all responsibility for any injury, damage or loss that the reader may incur as a direct or indirect consequence of following any directions or suggestions given in this blog or participating in any programs described in this blog or in the book, The Building Blocks of Health––How to Optimize Your Health with a Lifestyle Checklist (available in print or downloaded at Amazon, Apple, Barnes and Noble and elsewhere). Copyright 2021 by J. Joseph Speidel.