I’m on a new health kick. I get these, goddamnit-I’m-restarting-my-life-tomorrow epiphanies some nights, usually after a binge-like indulgence, (“pumpkin spice late cupcakes anyone?!?”) and decide that’s it, that’s the last time and tomorrow I will be perfect and eat my weight in kale and have a hot body for the rest of my life.
And then I gaze at my french press and I grieve, because all those hoyty toyty health nuts wag their fingers at me and tell me to nix the caffeine. They tell me all my energy and pooping should come naturally, by the power of the sun god, positive earth vibes and kale, or something.
I’ve given up coffee off and on for the past six years and you know what? My re-begun life tomorrow involves java. I have bigger fish to fry than my soft-core caffeine addiction. Plus, there are some schools of thought that tote coffee as a health elixir (ish) and I’m choosing to side with them. They’re probably more fun anyway.
In case you were curious, here’s my favorite health benefits of coffee;
1. It may protect against Parkinson’s, liver cancer and Type 2 diabetes.
(These actually aren’t my favorite benefits, they’re just the most serious. In reality they’re a bit abstract, as I’m this normal, healthy, 21-year old.)
2. It may lower your risk of depression, if you’re a woman. And if you’re me. Kid you not, the day I went back to drinking coffee I was struck by periodic urges to dance around my house and found Kira’s weird behavior hilarious, as opposed to mildly annoying. Coffee, friends, coffee makes you happy.
3. This drink boosts brainpower. Dear college students, stop freaking out about “needing” a cup of coffee before working on homework or during an exam. If you’re me, that cup of coffee calms you down a bit and happens to sharpen your memory and keep you alert. Shots shots shots!!!
4. Coffee shops are great places to meet up and chat. I just met up and chatted with someone at a coffee shop last weekend, actually. We’ve talked about this; forming close, personal and authentic relationships with people is one of the healthiest things a person can be intentional about. Life is hard, remember, and we need each other. Loneliness is actually the worst; it can shorten your life by weakening your immune system and making you less motivated to seek help when you’re feeling ill. Depression and hopelessness are side affects of being lonely, which is a byproduct of not putting yourself out there and into deeper friendships. So quit being wussy and love people, and be loved by them.
Not quite a health benefit, but you can put french vanilla and caramel flavors in your coffee!!!! Until it becomes a french vanilla drink with a splash of coffee. Like Cheetah used to do. Crazy kid.
5. It makes you poop! Who doesn’t love pooping?!?
6. When you wake up and smell coffee, it reminds you of your childhood, of growing up with an early-rising, coffee-loving daddy who thought you were amazing, and who’s love you were never insecure about or shy around. This smell reminds you of being small, of being beautiful, of a life’s potential and, mostly, of peace.
7. And finally, dude, if it makes you stressed and self-critical to try and quit drinking coffee, lighten up and stop trying to quit. Stress is worse than the potential high blood pressure and jittery nerves. It makes you stupid happy to drink coffee, so stop worrying about it. We’ve got other things to worry about.
Feel free to add more in the comments! I’ll probably post-edit later.