If you’re one of the 74% of Americans who drink coffee every day, you might be wondering if you should be drinking organic. You might even be wondering if you should drink your daily morning cup of joe at all! Let’s get into the details!
There are said to be numerous benefits to drinking coffee in general! Coffee may lower the risk of Parkinson’s Disease, Alzheimer’s disease, heart disease, prostate cancer, colorectal cancer, liver cancer, type 2 diabetes, cirrhosis, mortality, and many other health issues.
A more well-known side effect is a boost in energy levels. Although I should mention that too much caffeine can have the opposite effect. Coffee may also decrease the risk of depression in women! But do the health benefits of coffee actually apply to all coffee lovers?
Do the Health Benefits of Coffee Apply to Everyone?
154 million Americans drink coffee regularly and about half of those people reported drinking coffee daily. But we don’t actually have any concrete evidence of cause and effect between coffee drinking and improved health in all of these areas mentioned above. It’s more of a correlation between the decreased risks and the coffee drinking, meaning the decreased risks could also be related to something else that the coffee drinkers are doing. Apparently, the benefits are also pretty heavily determined by how quickly an individual metabolizes caffeine. You can learn more about that here.
So coffee in general may or may not have significant health benefits for everyone, but the good news is that it has been proven that it’s a healthy drink in moderation. Moderation matters because of the caffeine content in coffee which, in excess, isn’t good for us. Too much caffeine can cause insomnia, nervousness, restlessness, nausea, increased heart rate, and other side effects. You can always drink organic decaf coffee if you are sensitive to caffeine or want to reduce your intake.
Now let’s get to why if you are drinking coffee regularly, you should probably choose organic.
Organic Coffee Benefits
1. Organic Coffee is Grown Without Harmful Chemicals
Coffee grown organically is grown without the use of synthetic fertilizers, chemical pesticides, herbicides, and other harmful chemicals. Not only are these chemicals bad for our health when consumed directly, but they can also leach into soil and water sources, causing even more health and environmental damage.
2. Organic Coffee is Environmentally Friendly
Organic coffee crops are grown in a way that minimizes soil erosion and helps to conserve natural resources. It also conserves biodiversity, as organic farms are required to leave a certain portion of their land untouched for the benefit of wildlife.
3. Organic Coffee is Higher in Antioxidants
Antioxidants are really cool! Plants produce natural antioxidants to protect themselves against harm from the environment around them. When pesticides and other forms of protection are used on conventional plants so they can grow faster and more successfully, they don’t produce as many antioxidants because they don’t need as many to survive.
4. Organic Coffee is Higher in Minerals
Organic farms tend to have healthier soil because they use more sustainable practices for growing. Nutrients in the soil of conventional farms tend to be depleted and highly sanitized by chemicals used on the plants grown there. That means the coffee plants grown conventionally will have fewer nutrients overall. While the soil quality of organic farms will vary depending on the organic farming operation, reviews of multiple studies show that organic varieties of coffee do provide significantly greater levels of the minerals calcium, potassium, magnesium, phosphorus, and sodium.
Side note: Numbers 3 & 4 apply to organic produce as well!
5. Organic Coffee is More Sustainable
Sustainability in farming is very important. Organic farming practices are designed to be sustainable, as they prioritize long-term environmental health over short-term economic gains. Organic coffee farmers go out of their way to maintain the quality of the soil and prevent the depletion of vital nutrients present in the soil. This makes organic coffee a great choice for those looking to reduce their environmental impact.
6. Organic Coffee Has a Better Taste
Many people find that organic coffee has a more robust flavor than conventionally-grown coffee. This could be due to the fact that organic coffee farms take greater care in selecting and roasting their organic beans or it could be that the plants are allowed to grow in a more natural way, with that nutrient-dense soil mentioned above.
Are Organic Coffee Beans the Best Coffee Beans?
Organic coffee benefits are better than traditional coffee, for sure, and they do get you closer to the healthiest coffee there is. That still doesn’t mean that all organic coffee beans are the best beans you can get. There are other things to consider, like bean quality (specialty coffee actually gets graded on quality), whether or not the beans are third-party tested to make sure they’re mold and mycotoxin free, and whether or not the beans are roasted properly.
It’s easy to learn about any coffee company you’re considering to be sure you’re getting higher quality coffee from organic coffee growers. Some things to look for in a coffee brand are:
- Fair Trade Coffee
- USDA Organic/Certified Organic label
- Roasted Fresh
- Shade Grown
Is Organic Coffee Worth the Extra Cost?
Organic coffee is typically more expensive than regular coffee, however, many people find that the organic coffee benefits are worth the extra cost. With some brands, the extra cost isn’t a huge difference, but ultimately, whether organic coffee is worth the price will depend on individual preferences and budgets.
Popular Organic Coffee Brands on Amazon
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Lavazza ¡Tierra! is a line of sustainably-sourced and ethically-traded coffees from Lavazza, Italy’s leading coffee roaster. The ¡Tierra! range of coffees contain beans sourced directly from small-scale farmers around the world, ensuring that the farmers receive fair wages for their work. Lavazza ¡Tierra! coffees are made with 100% Arabica beans, roasted in a way that enhances the unique flavor of each origin.
Their coffee beans are roasted to bring out the distinctive characteristics of each origin so that each cup produces a unique flavor profile. The ¡Tierra! range includes a selection of medium, dark, and decaffeinated roasts, as well as espresso and single-origin coffees. The ¡Tierra! range of coffees are certified by the Rainforest Alliance, showing that Lavazza is committed to ethical and sustainable sourcing.
Caffe Umbria is an Italian-style coffee roaster and cafe based in Seattle, Washington. Founded in 2002 by Emanuele Bizzarri, the third-generation Italian roaster, Caffe Umbria offers a range of artisan-crafted Italian-style espresso blends and single-origin coffees. They are known for their quality, consistency, and dedication to the craft of coffee roasting.
Equal Exchange is an independent worker-owned cooperative that is committed to providing its customers with high-quality, organic, and fairly-traded coffee and other food items. It is the largest independent, fair-trade coffee company in the United States. The company was founded in 1986 by three friends who wanted to create a direct trade relationship with small-scale farmers in Latin America, Africa, and Asia.
Equal Exchange has since grown to become a leading supplier of organic and Fair Trade Certified products to thousands of retail stores, food service accounts, and co-ops across the United States. The company works with over 30 small-scale farmer co-operatives in 13 countries around the world to source its coffee. All of their coffees are organic and sourced from farmers who are paid a fair price for their products. Equal Exchange is committed to providing its customers with ethically sourced coffee and other products that are of the highest quality.
Organic Coffee Co.
Organic Coffee Co. is a specialty coffee roaster and retailer based out of Los Angeles, California that is focused on providing the highest quality organic and sustainable coffee. The company was founded in 2019 with the mission to create a sustainable, ethical, and enjoyable coffee experience.
Organic Coffee Co. strives to only source, roast, and deliver organic, fair-trade, and sustainably grown coffee beans to their customers. They are committed to roasting only the highest quality organic Arabica coffees. All of their coffees are roasted in small batches and then packed in air-tight bags to lock in the freshness and flavor.
Puroast is a specialty coffee brand that is known for its low-acid, dark-roasted coffees. The company was founded in Chico, California in 2002 and has since grown to become a widely available and well-known coffee brand. Puroast coffees are unique in that they are made using a proprietary low-acid roasting process. The process is said to reduce the acidity levels of the coffee while still preserving its flavor and aroma.
The company offers a variety of different coffees, including whole bean, ground, single-serve pods, and K-Cup compatible pods. Puroast coffees are also available in a variety of flavors and blends, including its signature Low Acid French Roast.