Can Olympic Athletes Have Caffeine?

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It’s more complicated than you may think.

Caffeine has been consistently shown to improve athletic performance, and its consumption has been subjected to ongoing scrutiny for elite athletes.

Today, Olympic athletes are permitted to enjoy a cup of coffee before competing. But between 1984-2004, the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) banned high concentrations of caffeine from all Olympic events.

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Year in Review: Our Top 5 Coffee Posts of 2017

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2017 was a big year for coffee.

What – and where – we drink is changing. Specialty trends moved into the mainstream, from the cold brew craze to the rise of RTD. Today, consumers have unprecedented control to customize their beverage, from unique flavors to nutrition-driven additives (oat milk, anyone?).

To reflect how these changes are reshaping our industry, the NCA even added a new “gourmet” category to our National Coffee Drinking Trends report.

Yet at the same time, the fundamentals of coffee remain as relevant as ever.  Whether you’re a brewing beginner or a brilliant barista, understanding the basics of what makes a quality cup is still crucial to developing and refining new brew methods and flavors. For instance: Extraction will always be a factor, and your equipment needs to be clean.

We’re looking forward to what the next year will bring – we’re seeing a lot of exciting new research on coffee and health, opportunities to improve industry best practices, and critical developments in sustainability.

But the New Year is also an opportunity to reflect on where we’ve been. Here are the most popular NCA blog posts in 2017, highlighting the importance of both innovation and tradition in the world of coffee.

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Study: Drinking Coffee Daily Does More Good Than Harm

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A massive meta-analysis suggests that the benefits of daily coffee consumption outweigh the risk.

“The bottom line is that we suggest [coffee] can be a good part of a healthy diet.”

Robin Poole, University of Southampton

Science continues to suggest that coffee is good for you.

Based on a systematic umbrella review of 201 meta-analyses recently published in the BMJ, researchers from the University of Southampton found that moderate coffee consumption was more often associated with benefit than harm.

Drinking three to four cups of coffee a day showed the greatest benefit in terms of cardiovascular disease, coronary heart disease, and stroke, versus not drinking coffee. (Drinking coffee beyond these amounts was not associated with harm, but the benefits were less pronounced.)

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11 Coffee Myths You Should Stop Believing Immediately

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Edited post via Thrillist 
By Jeremy Glass (@candyandpizza)

It can be hard to enjoy your morning coffee when there are so many myths surrounding what’s in your cup floating around. For instance, apparently coffee makes you poop. (Actually, that one’s true.)

Regardless, there are still a ton of tall tales being passed around that negatively impact the way you consume coffee.

Drink in these 11 facts and wake up.

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Are Workers “Too Busy” For Coffee?

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Compiled by Kyra Auffermann, NCA

A New Study Looks at Coffee and Productivity in the Workplace

Even before I was employed by the coffee industry, my productivity has been fueled primarily by coffee – followed by WiFi, a solid soundtrack, and then another cup of coffee.

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Fortunately, “procaffeination” is supported by science:  Studies suggest that consuming caffeine can help promote creativity, concentration, and even prevent workplace accidents. Plus, coffee breaks are linked to better morale and collaboration at work.

Yet nearly one-third (29%) of European workers said that they didn’t drink coffee at work because they didn’t have time or were too busy, according to a new study commissioned by the Institute for Scientific Information on Coffee (ISIC).

The research found that workplace coffee drinking habits are shaped by time, taste, and the desire for a productivity boost. More than two-thirds (68%) of respondents said they always or often drink coffee during the working day.

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Is Cold Brew Good For You?

The following post is adapted from Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health News 

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Science shows coffee can have major health perks at any temperature.

Summer’s hottest drink is also a healthy way to beat the heat.

Cold brew coffee — made by steeping coffee grounds in cold water overnight or longer — is just as healthy as regular coffee, according to Frank Hu, Ph.D., chair of the Department of Nutrition at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, in a recent Health.com article.

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Do Coffee Drinkers Live Longer?

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Two big studies support the long-term health benefits of coffee

It turns out, a cup of coffee can do a lot more than just perk up your morning.

People who drink more coffee may have a lower risk of premature death from disease, according to two new studies published in the Annals of Internal Medicine. The results were consistent among more than 700,000 participants from a variety of racial, ethnic, and cultural backgrounds.

Previous research has suggested that coffee is good for you, but was often limited to smaller groups and people of European decent, writes the Los Angeles Times.

And both studies found benefits for people who drank decaffeinated as well.

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Study: Drinking Coffee May Help Protect Against Liver Disease

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A new study shows that drinking four cups of coffee a day may help prevent deadly disease, and may even counter the damage caused by unhealthy diet and lifestyle habits. (One cup of herbal tea also offers the same protection.)

Previous evidence suggested that coffee and tea could have a protective effect on liver tissue, but the results haven’t been conclusive. Now for the first time, scientists have confirmed the potential benefits of these beloved beverages.

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