Monday, December 12, 2011

Love Your Cup of Joe…

During this Christmas season you may have a stronger need for a cup of joe.  You may either feel tired from all the partying (?) or stressed out from the preparations of it all.  Or you may just love your cup of coffee every morning like me.

Where did the name come from?

Cup of joe is a purely American expression.  It was supposedly given to honor Josephus Danielswho didn’t want his sailors to drink alcohol on board of the ships; he banned it completely in 1914.  He encouraged the men to drink coffee instead.  Mr. Daniels was later appointed Secretary of the Navy during WWI.

"The morning cup of coffee has an exhilaration about it which the cheering influence of the afternoon or evening cup of tea cannot be expected to reproduce."

~ Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr., "Over the Teacups," 1891

Health Benefits

Studies show that we may be benefitting from coffee in more ways than just the energy-boosting caffeine in coffee -- we might also be reaping its cancer-preventing and depression-lowering effects, just to name a couple.

Caffeine stimulates brain functions, especially in the right hemisphere which helps language, both spoken and understanding.  Tad Brunye, a senior cognitive scientist at the U.S. Army Natick Soldier Research Development and Engineering Center in Natick, Massassuchets, explains that it doesn’t have to be a lot to get the desired result.

Some people believed that tea had more health benefits than coffee.  Suzie Cohen, R.PH. points out, that coffee-drinkers may be at lower risk for liver and colon cancer, type 2diabetes, and Parkinson's disease.  It’s a proven fact that both tea and coffee contain antioxidants which are necessary to fight free radicals in the body.

Donald Hensrud, M.D. from the famous Mayo Clinic suggests that like everything else, coffee consumption should be moderate.  The same news comes from a study at Harvard University 

"Over second and third cups flow matters of high finance, high state, common gossip and low comedy. [Coffee] is a social binder, a warmer of tongues, a soberer of minds, a stimulant of wit, a foiler of sleep if you want it so. From roadside mugs to the classic demi-tasse, it is the perfect democrat."
~ Author Unknown

History of Coffee

Coffee’shistory had its roots in spiritual practices.  Muslims in Yemen made a form of wine from the coffee bean which was consumed during religious ceremonies.  A possible origin of the name is from a region in modern day Ethiopia, called the kingdom of kaffa where coffee plants were cultivated.  Apparently, the benefits of the plant were discovered by accident.  Some stories say that shepherds chewed on the berries and found them bitter.  They experimented with it by boiling and roasting the beans and eventually enjoyed the energizing brewed drink.

We still can agree today that the properties of coffee drive away fatigue and lethargy and bring to the body a certain lightness and vigor.

The coffee culture in our days is including more than just the black drink.  It is in all the additions where we often find the “dangers” if not extra calories.

Anyway, moderation is the game.  I surely enjoy my cup of coffee every morning and next time I will thank Captain Joe for another name for it.

1 comment:

Yusun said...

mmm... what a great post! i agree with you on all aspects of coffee! ;) (although these days i'm definately enjoying it in moderation). i appreciated your information on the health benefits as well.