Are There Minerals in Coffee?

Coffee is good for you. It wakes you up in the morning and keeps you from falling asleep in the afternoon. You can reduce the risk of Type II diabetes with coffee. You would think that perhaps coffee is chuck full of vitamins and minerals but that is not the case, with one exception. Coffee is good for you because of the antioxidants. The one mineral of use in coffee is potassium. An eight ounce cup of coffee contains 116 mg of potassium which is three percent of the recommended daily amount that the body needs. By comparison an average banana contains about 400 mg of potassium and an average orange has about 237 mg of potassium. If your doctor tells you to eat an orange or banana each day to add potassium to your diet you could just as easily drink three cups of coffee!

Why Is the Potassium in Coffee Good for You? suggestions sources of potassium and explains why it is important.

Along with sodium, chloride, calcium, and magnesium, potassium is an electrolyte, meaning that it helps to conduct electrical charges in the body. Like all the other electrolytes, our bodies have evolved elaborate systems to control blood levels in a narrow range. This is good news since normal levels of potassium are absolutely critical to life-if potassium levels get too high or too low, the heart and nervous system completely shut down. Luckily, most of us are able to obtain enough potassium from foods to meet our most basic needs. But since just meeting a minimal intake need is not a recipe for health, many people in the United States often fail to obtain optimal amounts of this nutrient, and pay a health cost for it.

Don’t forget about bananas, oranges, avocados, lentils and beet greens as sources of potassium but also don’t forget that the mineral in your daily cup or cups of coffee is potassium.

And the Antioxidants

There are no vitamins in coffee but if you are looking for healthy ingredients you will find antioxidants. Better Health defines antioxidants as:

-compounds in foods that neutralize chemicals called free radicals (unstable molecules), produced by oxidation in the human body. These chemicals have been linked to diseases such as heart and liver disease and cancer. Plant foods such as fruits, vegetables, nuts and whole grains are rich sources of antioxidants.

The protective effect of antioxidants continues to be studied around the world. For instance, men who eat plenty of the antioxidant lycopene (found in tomatoes) may be less likely than other men to develop prostate cancer. Lutein, found in spinach and corn, has been linked to a lower incidence of eye lens degeneration and associated blindness in the elderly. Flavonoids, such as the tea catechins found in green tea, are believed to contribute to the low rates of heart disease in Japan.

And the antioxidants in a good cup of coffee are known to reduce the incidence of disease ranging from Type II diabetes to Alzheimer’s to various forms of cancer. The one mineral in coffee is potassium but the antioxidants are the reason to expect health benefits.

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