Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Random Tidbits about Coffee

I'm sure that many of you have heard, especially over the last several years, about the numerous health benefits that coffee contains.  Back in the day, a lot of the wanna-be health gurus used to act like this stuff was actually bad for us, but more and more scientific evidence suggests otherwise.  It is loaded with antioxidants, helps prevent cirrhosis of the liver, reduces the chances of getting certain types of diseases, good for your cognitive function, etc.

On this post, I'm not going to list all of the health benefits, but I will provide several random tidbits about this substance that you may or may not have been aware of.  You know, the fun, trivial sort of stuff.

* How was coffee discovered? Going by what I have read, some time around 800 A.D. (during the 9th century), a few goat herders noticed the hyped up energy level the goats would have after eating coffee berries. Well, supposedly, a nearby monk decided to brew a drink with coffee berries and, from there, noticed that it increased alertness and kept him awake.  So one could say, as word got out, that coffee beverages first hit the market from that point forward.

* There are 2 types of coffee beans: Arabica and Robusta. 70% of coffee beans are Arabica. The less popular version (Robusta) is slightly more bitter and has twice the amount of caffeine. So yeah, one could say that Robusta is, well, rather robust!

* Who produces the most coffee on this planet? At the moment, Brazil produces 40% of the world's coffee, which is twice as much as the runner-ups, which are Colombia and Vietnam. Do you want another tidbit about coffee growing?  Okay... Hawaii is the only state in the U.S. that commercially grows coffee.

* It is hard to believe, but coffee actually used to be used as a food. Coffee berries were mixed with fat to create an energy-rich snack thingy. Talk about a cool candy bar; ha! It was also consumed as a wine when made from the pulp of coffee berries. At any rate, it sounds like we finally figured out the best way to use coffee, if ya ask me... Oh, speaking of wine, coffee's original name was "qahwah." The term qahwah came from the Yemen term for wine. It was called "kahveh" in Turkey, but later on the Dutch referred to it as "koffie," which is where we get the English name "coffee."  Alright, that is enough random word tidbits for this particular subject...

* So, what type of food is coffee? Actually, coffee is considered to be a fruit. Coffee beans are really just the pits of a little berry that are grown on bushes. Yep, it's a seed but we like to call it a bean due to the way it looks. Pretty neat, eh?

* So what type of diseases is coffee thought to prevent? Well, I wasn't going to list any health benefits in the 'random tidbits' section of this post, but these are some of the lesser known ones... Coffee drinkers have a lower risk of developing Alzheimer's disease and Parkinson's disease.  In addition to that, it helps prevent cirrhosis of the liver and has positive effects on Type 2 diabetes.  Some research even claims that coffee could even help prevent skin cancer.  Is all of this actually considered medical facts or is it just mere speculation from confused researchers? I hope it is true, but don't ask me...

* Who in the hell invented instant coffee? This is a good question, so I just looked it up online and I found out that a chemist that went by the name "George Constant Washington" experimented with dried coffee before he created what was called "Red E Coffee," which was the first brand-name instant coffee.

* Decaf doesn't mean it is totally caffeine-free.  Yeah, I'm sure many of you already knew that one, but did you know that dark roast coffees have less caffeine than lighter roasts?  The darker roasts may taste stronger, but some of the caffeine is actually lost during the roasting process.

I know there are loads and loads of additional random coffee tidbits I could post on here, but I don't want this low-traffic blog to waste anymore of my time today; cheers!

Image Credit: Bing image search using the 'free to share & use' function.

---End of Post "Random Tidbits about Coffee"

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