It’s no secret that for many people, waking up their brains each day requires a shot of caffeine in the form of coffee. In fact, worldwide, three billion cups of java are consumed each and every day.
For years, research has dug into the benefits of this amazing elixir. And, now, there’s more credibility pointing to coffee’s stimulating brain benefits. Not only does coffee live up to its reputation to help us stay sharp and alert, but adding on a second or even third cup could come with even bigger brain benefits.
Here’s why drinking two to three cups a day could be the secret to improved focus and even memory…
An immediate brain boost
The research, performed at the University of Minho, looked at the brain structure and connectivity of 31 regular coffee drinkers to compare to that of those who skip the java.
And, according to says Professor Nuno Sousa, “This is the first time that the effect that drinking coffee regularly has on our brain network is studied with this level of detail.”
It allowed the team to see exactly what coffee can do for the brain in real-time first when their brains were at rest and again while performing a mental task.
And here’s what they found…
Not only can drinking coffee result in improved motor control, but it can also boost focus. The study participants who got their shot of caffeine found they were less likely to let their minds wander.
Additionally, coffee drinkers benefitted from:
- Increased levels of attention
- Higher alertness
- Improved learning and memory
And the researchers say that when it comes to coffee, there’s no waiting for it to take effect since it delivers an immediate brain boost — starting with the first sip from the first cup.
But the biggest benefits were seen with coffee consumption of three to five cups per day.
More benefits of being a coffee lover
And better brain connectivity and function aren’t the only benefits studies have found from adding coffee to your day.
- Enhanced fat-burning – Researchers at the University of Granada were able to determine that just 3 mg/kg of caffeine (the amount that you get when you drink just one cup of strong coffee) significantly boosted fat-burning when consumed before aerobic exercise. And they found that the highest level of fat shedding was achieved with an afternoon workout compared to exercising in the morning.
- Heart attack and liver protection – A meta-analysis of nine different studies demonstrated the power of coffee to reduce your risk of liver cancer by a whopping 40 percent. In another study, researchers found that compared with people who drank less than one cup or one to three cups of coffee each day, those who regularly consumed at least three cups daily were significantly less likely to show coronary calcification.
- Delays dementia – Finally, research at the Indiana University in Bloomington showed that the caffeine you get in coffee can work to enhance the production of a brain enzyme called NMNAT2 to delay the onset of dementia and Alzheimer’s.
- Lower Parkinson’s risk – Research following participants in the Harvard Biomarkers Study found that compared with those with the lowest caffeine consumption, the incidence of Parkinson’s in people who consumed the highest amount of caffeinated beverages was over 70 percent lower.
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