Can Coffee Help You Recover From Your Workouts Faster?
By Cassandra Forsythe-Pribanic, PhD
When most of us think of coffee, we usually think of the wonderful smelling aroma that wakes us up in the morning. For some people, this “liquid motivation” brings much joy and energy in just one cup. Coffee is so loved that it’s personified into being “My Coffee” and has helped spur several successful coffee companies across the world.
But, coffee is more than just so those amazing beans that pick us up when we’re down (or tired, that is).
As many of us know, coffee comes from a plant. But, what we may not know is that the beans are contained within berries, much like most seeds contained in pieces of fruit.
And, like most berries, the berry of coffee trees is a very nutrient-rich, powerful health-promoting food.
Except, when’s the last time you ate a Coffeeberry®? Probably not ever.
This is unfortunate, because berries from coffee plants (called Coffeeberry®), are being shown in several different scientific investigations to posses potent antioxidant properties, which can not only help prevent common chronic diseases like diabetes and heart, but also improve recovery from athletic activity and help fight inflammatory conditions such as IBS, arthritis and allergies.
So, if Coffeeberry® is so great, why can’t we buy them in stores?
Well, there are two major problems:
• First, since coffee is so popular, the fruit is stripped off when the beans are collected
• Second, if the fruit is saved, it’s highly perishable by both bacterial and fungal contamination and must be eaten right away
As such, Coffeeberry® is considered a waste product of coffee production - which is very interesting, considering that whey protein used to be a “waste” product of cheese-making; meaning that some of the best foods for our bodies have once been overlooked as garbage, until now.
Science to the Rescue!
Since it’s almost impossible to eat Coffeeberry® unless you have a coffee tree growing in your back yard (which is highly unlikely unless you live in Africa, Hawaii or Latin America), you will have to get these powerful berries in a dried form (kind of like how you get whey protein).
Scientists have discovered a way to isolate Coffeeberry® into a powdered form, which can also be concentrated so that you can consume less, but get more.
This dried product has been shown to completely safe and effective for delivering high doses of coffee antioxidants and other Coffeeberry® nutrients that promote better health.
What’s more interesting about this delivery form is that these highly potent free-radical scavenging components in Coffeeberry® can be supplied instead through of conventional coffee to people that need a limited caffeine intake, such as when pregnant, or in people who are sensitive to caffeine.
Coffeeberry® for Improved Recovery
Scientists from the Faculty of Sport and Tourism in Belgrade, investigated the effects of Coffeeberry® concentrated extract on the recovery of 20 college age athletic men and women. These participants were either given two 400 mg capsules of Coffeeberry® each day for 28 days, or a placebo.
After one month, participants taking Coffeeberry® had improved recovery from intense exercise compared to those taking a placebo. The Coffeeberry® extract increased blood levels of Total Antioxidant Capacity, while decreasing blood lactate (a common marker of muscle fatigue), and increased their Heart Rate Recovery Index.
This indicates that Coffeeberry® can be useful for people who exercise intensely and often, which allows them to exercise harder more often.
Recently, studies with 100 mg of Coffeeberry® extract given to humans also have shown promising benefits for health promotion (personal communication, April 2011). It appears that just 100 mg of Coffeeberry® is enough to see beneficial effects from this berry’s antioxidant content.
Overall, we may be missing out on the best part by drinking just coffee. Thanks to science it is possible to take advantage of the best part of this fruit.
Next: 3 More Amazing Benefits Of Coffeeberry® >>
Safety studies on products from whole coffee fruit. Heimbach JT et al. Food and Chemical Toxicology. 48 (2010) 2517-25.
The Antioxidant and Chlorogenic Acid Profiles of Whole Coffee Fruits are Influenced by Extraction Procedures. Mullen W et al. J Agr & Food Chem, 2011.
The Effects of a 4-Week Coffeeberry® Supplementation on Antioxidant Status, Endurance, and Anaerobic Performance in College Athletes. Ostojic, Sergej M., et al. (2008) Research in Sports
Medicine 16: 281-294.