Drink coffee with or without milk? Study gives a clear answer

Deepak Gupta
Deepak Gupta January 10, 2022
Updated 2022/01/10 at 8:19 PM

Some drink Coffee with milk and others prefer without milk. But which of them is better? Researchers at the Austrian University in Graz were able to answer this question some time ago in a study: It is better to avoid cow’s milk. Because this inhibits a positive effect of the hot drink. However, there are also good things about it: Some alternatives even increase the positive effect.

Content: That’s why coffee without milk

Did you know already?
There are more than 60 types of coffee in the world. The most popular variety is Arabica, which makes up 70 to 75 percent of global coffee production. The Robusta variety is often used for instant coffee due to its taste and accounts for around 20 to 30 percent of global coffee production (source: Jacobs Professional)

Coffee without milk is better: but why?

Whether coffee with milk or without – for many people the drink stands for enjoyment. But coffee can also be healthy. Scientists from Graz already showed in a study in 2014 that its positive effect can be attributed, among other things, to a certain process called autophagy. Prof. Dr. Frank Madeo explains:

“It’s a kind of self-digestion program that cleanses and detoxifies the cells. This cellular garbage disposal is mainly triggered by controlled fasting, ”explains Prof. Dr. Frank Madeo.

Prof. Dr. Frank Madeo

In autophagy, “the body identifies old and defective cell components and marks them for destruction” (according to MentalFoodChain). This happens during fasting, for example, when the body does not have enough energy to maintain broken down cell parts. Coffee can also trigger autophagy. The prerequisite for this: You drink coffee without milk. According to the study from Graz, animal proteins can inhibit the autophagy processes.

Important information about autophagy
The Japanese cell researcher Yoshinori Ohsumi was honored for his discovery of the mechanisms of autophagy. In 2016 he was awarded the Nobel Prize for Medicine. The reasoning by the Nobel Prize Committee states that the researcher’s work “has dramatically changed the understanding of this vital process” (via aerzteblatt). The autophagy process plays a role in cancer and neurological diseases such as Parkinson’s or Alzheimer’s.

Coffee without milk: these alternatives have a positive effect

In order to maintain the positive effect of coffee, the researchers recommend drinking the coffee “preferably black or with milk based on plants, such as almond or coconut milk”. So if you want to support the autophagy process, it is advisable to avoid cow’s milk in your coffee.

There are now numerous alternatives:

  • Soy drink
  • Almond drink
  • Rice drink
  • Oat drink
  • Lupine drink
  • Pea drink
  • Coconut drink
  • Nut drink

As early as 2016, biophysicist Thomas Finkenstädt explained to RP Online that some cow’s milk alternatives were involved in the important process of Even encourage autophogy:

“Vegetable protein, especially in soy and wheat, strongly stimulates autophagy. This is because these foods are very high in spermidine. A polyamine that stimulates autophagy. “

Thomas Finkenstädt

by the way: You can also find spermidine in these foods.

That’s how much coffee is drunk in Germany
Coffee is the most popular hot drink in Germany. According to Statista, the per capita consumption of coffee was most recently around 164 liters per year.

5 more facts about coffee

Aside from the fact that coffee can stimulate the autophagy effect in your body, there are also other interesting facts about hot drinks (according to eatsmarter):

  1. Coffee increases the general ability to perform and concentrate.
  2. Coffee tastes best fresh, because after a while it changes its taste and becomes rancid.
  3. Coffee does not remove water from the body, it only has a diuretic effect. The reason: caffeine briefly stimulates kidney function. However, the drink is not suitable as a thirst quencher. Water is suitable for this.
  4. According to researchers from the Harvard School of Public Health, coffee can lighten the mood. Two to three cups a day could reduce your risk of depression by 15 percent.
  5. But: not everything about coffee is positive. It can be harmful to the environment, as forests often have to give way for new plantations. In addition, the pesticides used damage the biosphere. It is therefore advisable to buy fair trade organic coffee.

More exciting information

Regardless of whether you want to continue drinking your coffee with milk or coffee without milk – there is one thing you should definitely consider: First drink a glass of water before you have your first coffee in the morning. Also note that you should drink a maximum of four cups of coffee a day.

When it comes to the effects of coffee on the body, researchers recently discovered even more positive effects. And these three coffee apps could make your coffee enjoyment even more fun. By the way: experts also recommend drinking tea without milk. Here, too, animal proteins inhibit the positive effect of the warm drink.

Sources: University of Graz, MentalFoodChain, Jacobs Professional, Statista, aerzteblatt, RP Online, eatsmarter, own research

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