Most people are looking for a way to drop a few pounds every now and then. Some of us want to do is as quickly as possible. In the past several years, coffee has gained some popularity as a weight loss option. A quick search on eBay and Amazon will deliver a lot of weight loss coffee results. The premise is that certain types of coffee have a slim effect.
The question is whether coffee really helps with weight loss? And do you need a specific weight loss coffee product? The answer to the first question is yes, and to the second, no.
How does coffee help with weight loss?
There are many coffee purists out there. They swear by their precious cup of coffee in the morning and in the afternoon. And while nothing is so utilitarian, coffee does offer a number of health benefits. First and foremost, coffee is praised for its ability to instantly and temporarily boost concentration and alertness. Black coffee is the healthiest alternative, much better than flavored coffee.
The reason coffee helps with weight loss and has other health benefits is because of caffeine. But that is not the only stimulant coffee contains.
In fact, coffee contains three stimulants:
- Caffeine (central nervous system stimulant)
- Chlorogenic acid (help slow absorption of carbs)
- Theobromine and theophylline (substances that are related to caffeine, and also have stimulant effect)
Caffeine is the most important stimulant. There have been a number of studies showing how caffeine can help you. The compound can help by blocking inhibitory neurotransmitter in the brain called Adenosine. By blocking this neurotransmitter, caffeine essentially increases the production and release of Dopamine and Norepinephrine.
Coffee helps mobilize fat
By stimulating the nervous system, caffeine effectively controls fat cells. The nervous system sends direct signals to fat cells to tell them to break down fat. And this is where caffeine and weight loss coffee help. Caffeine also increases Adrenaline in our blood levels, another hormone that signals fat tissues to break down fats and release them into the blood. In a way, coffee mobilizes fat from the fat tissues, making it available as free fatty acids in the blood.
Boost metabolic rate
The higher the metabolic rate, the more calories we burn. Coffee is known as a booster of metabolic rate. One cup of coffee can boost our metabolic rate by up to 10%, which means more calories burned. However, obese people do not reap the same benefits. Fat burning and metabolic rate are boosted more in lean people, and less in obese people.
Other benefits of caffeine
Weight loss coffee, and caffeine for that matter, provide many more benefits to our body. Burning calories is not the only benefit of drinking coffee.
Some other benefits include:
- Reducing risk of mouth and throat cancer
- Decrease heart rhythm disturbance hospitalization
- Decrease the risk of type 2 diabetes
- Gives you a mental boost for 45 minutes
- Potential to reduce the risk of Parkinson’s
- Can reduce muscle pain after a workout
- Speeds up your reaction time
What type of coffee to drink?
When it comes to types of coffee, as mentioned previously, the best weight loss coffee is black coffee. The reason is simple. Black coffee is calorie free. When you add cream and sugar, that is when you up to the calories intake. A cup of coffee with 2 teaspoons of sugar and ounce of cream has up to 70 calories.
Switching from a coffee with sugar and cream to black coffee on a regular basis can help you shed up to 22 pounds of fat per year. Yes, do the math. Three cups of coffee are 200 calories per day, totaling 75,000 calories per year.
How to drink weight loss coffee?
Now that we’ve established that coffee, particularly caffeine, can help you lose weight, the question is how to drink it safely. We know that certain studies suggest that too much coffee can do more harm than good. So, how to reap the benefits of coffee, without doing harm to your body?
Drink in healthy amounts
When it comes to coffee, the golden rule “less is more”. That means that just a little bit of coffee goes a long way. Coffee, or caffeine, can help temporarily suppress your appetite and stimulate calorie burning. However, excessive consumption leads to stress, insomnia, and other factors that contribute to weight gain, not weight loss.
In terms of healthy amounts, one or two cups of caffeinated coffee per day is more than enough to help you reap the benefits for weight loss. The total recommended amount is 400mg of caffeine per day. If you are getting caffeine from other sources (chocolate, carbonated drinks), reduce your coffee intake.
Keep in mind, plain coffee is best for weight loss coffee. One cup of black coffee has only 2 calories and contains no fat.
Space out coffee times
We mentioned that coffee can help stimulate calorie burning and suppress appetite. But that means you should space your coffee throughout the day. That is the best way to reap the weight loss benefits. For example, if you stick to two cups of coffee, get one in the morning, and one in the mid-afternoon.
For those taking more than two cups of coffee, make sure to space them out evenly. In the same way you take antibiotics every six or eight hours, you should consume coffee for maximum benefits.
The half-caff strategy
This is a strategy many people use when they want to reap the benefits of caffeine, but also avoid the dangers and side effects of too much caffeine.
What does the strategy suggest?
The trick is to switch from regular coffee, to a mixture of full and decaffeinated beans. These beans are called half-caff, and they allow you to safely drink coffee up to more than four times per day.
You need to pay attention to labels, just so that you ensure you are drinking half-caffeinated coffee. Look at the label, it will indicate how much caffeine is there in a cup. Stick to the 400mg of caffeine per day limit.
You can also make your own half-caff coffee by mixing half a cup of regular coffee and half a cup of decaf coffee. Another popular trick is to drink half a cup of regular coffee with half a cup of hot water.
Read next: Powerful Green Foods For Weight Loss
Photo credit: Pixabay