START A PETITION 27,000,000 members: the world's largest community for good

Coffee: To Quit or Not to Quit

  • 1 of 3
Coffee: To Quit or Not to Quit

By Pat Klein, Yoga+

Coffee is the hot beverage of choice in Europe, the Americas, and the Arabic world, with tea occupying that position in Britain, China, and India. In Arabia, the oily coffee berries were used as a medicine and fermented to make wine almost 2,000 years ago. There are many legends about how the stimulating properties of coffee came to be recognized. One legend traces coffee’s first use as a beverage back to an Arabian monastery, where sometime around the 10th century a monk noticed a small herd of goats cavorting all night after eating berries from the coffee plants that grew wild in the vicinity. The monks brewed a concoction of the berries in hot water and found it helped them stay awake for their nightly prayers.

The practice of roasting the beans originated in Syria in the 13th century. Coffee arrived in Paris in 1643, and by 1675 the city had more than 250 coffee houses. By the 18th century the coffee bush had reached Brazil, which now produces more coffee than the rest of the world combined. Since then, coffee has become the national drink in many countries. It has been estimated that 25 percent of all adults in the United States consume more than five cups of coffee every day. They drink four times more coffee than beer, three times more than soft drinks, and millions of gallons more than milk.

Is this healthy? Countless studies have been done, yet medical science has come up with little that would persuade people of the need to find an alternative to coffee. Some studies suggest a possible relationship between coffee and pancreatic diseases such as cancer, though this is actively debated. Others suggest a mild aggravating effect on hypertension and irregularities in heart rhythm. Many people who drink coffee recognize that it irritates their stomach, and studies have shown that its tannic acid content interferes with iron absorption and aggravates iron-deficiency anemia. The same is true of black tea. Medical research has also focused on the link between coffee consumption and PMS, fibrocystic breast disease, insomnia and other sleep disorders, and decreased rates of calcium absorption, although none of the findings are conclusive.

But the upshot is that the evidence is not compelling enough to spark a massive retreat from a beverage that has become an integral part of the daily routine in many households. The reasons people drink coffee are many and often firmly held. Besides finding pleasure in the aroma and flavor, many of us sip it as part of a comforting ritual, accompanied by a newspaper in the morning or a chat with a companion later in the day. Some also find that it acts as a morning laxative. But probably the most universal reason for drinking coffee is that it gets us going first thing in the morning and keeps us going later in the day when our energy begins to flag. It banishes sluggishness after a meal or in the evening hours at the end of a hard day.

  • 1 of 3

Read more: All recipes, Drinks, Food, Health, ,

have you shared this story yet?

go ahead, give it a little love

Megan, selected from Yoga+ Magazine

Yoga International is an award-winning, independent magazine that contemplates the deeper dimensions of spiritual life--exploring the power of yoga practice and philosophy to not only transform our bodies and minds, but inspire meaningful engagement in our society, environment, and the global community.


+ add your own
3:43AM PST on Jan 21, 2015

Not quit

8:55AM PST on Jan 7, 2015

I have given up everything else. PLEASE let me keep my coffee. Except when I drink a cup of my favorite tea

4:13AM PDT on Jun 29, 2014

I'm not overkeen on coffee actually, I find it too bitter and I can only have very weak coffee so I usually stick to tea! I kind of want to like it though since a lot of other people do but I'm not into it.

3:56AM PDT on Jun 29, 2014

I like coffee one cup a day or week it's no problem.

1:40PM PST on Jan 27, 2014

i drink it so infrequently that it probably doesn't effect me much

1:52AM PDT on Sep 4, 2013

Thanks for sharing.

4:06PM PST on Feb 13, 2013

Ah heck, no point in giving up now.

8:10AM PST on Feb 7, 2013

Great read,thanks. Everything in moderation...1-2 cups of coffee is okay.

1:17AM PST on Feb 7, 2013

Interesting and useful info, thanks!

8:24AM PDT on Mar 29, 2012

Useful information.

add your comment

Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.

people are talking

I am MOORE JULIET from Australia, I have been trying for 5years to get pregnant and needed help! i h…

Sounds like a plan.

Very helpful! I hope people who need the info are made aware. p.s. Pets who don't enjoy hugs …

This is wonderful and quite informative blog I have learnt so many things from here. Smith Mak Smith Mak
on 9 Ergonomic Tips for Sitting at the Computer
14 minutes ago


Select names from your address book   |   Help

We hate spam. We do not sell or share the email addresses you provide.

site feedback


Problem on this page? Briefly let us know what isn't working for you and we'll try to make it right!