Coffee is already one of everyone’s favorite foods, one most of us just can’t live without if we’re to function semi-coherently on a daily basis. But did you know there’s a diet that features coffee as a weight loss tool? In fact, the Coffee Diet is quickly becoming one of the most popular diets in the country, thanks to its high nutritional content and its ability to encourage a faster metabolism. Below, you’ll find everything you need to know about the diet and whether or not it’s worth your time and effort…
What is the Coffee Diet?
The Coffee Diet is an eating plan based on a 2017 book, The Coffee Lover’s Diet, by Dr. Bob Arnot. The book extolls the virtues of coffee as a tool to combat a wide range of health problems—including heart disease and cancer—thanks to its high antioxidant and polyphenol content. The diet involves drinking a minimum of three cups of light roast coffee every day, but you’ll be happy to know there’s no maximum. Both decaf and regular coffee are encouraged as part of the Coffee Diet!
What does the Coffee Diet Do?
According to Dr. Arnot’s book—based on his research—coffee is able to provide a lot of health benefits. Coffee is effective at curbing our appetites, which can help us to eat fewer calories and thereby decrease our chance of weight gain. It can also slow down the rate at which our body absorbs fat, as well as boosting our metabolism to burn more calories on a daily basis. It can even help to improve our circulation and target fat to burn for energy, making it easier to lose weight. The caffeine in regular coffee can provide a lot of these benefits, but some come from the antioxidants found in coffee—both regular and decaf. Thus, drinking coffee in any form is worth the effort!
The Coffee Diet Particulars
Take note: not just any cup of coffee will do! Loading up on sugar and cream/milk definitely defeats the purpose of the diet, so you’ll want to make sure to drink only black coffee. It’s recommended to drink coffee only from Brazil, Ethiopia, Colombia, or Kenya, those from countries closest to the equator where the volcanic soil encourages the highest antioxidant production. And, aside from the minimum three cups of coffee per day, you’re also to follow a low-calorie (1500 calories) Mediterranean-style diet, cutting back on refined carbs and processed foods while eating a lot of fruits, veggies, nuts, seeds, healthy fats, and lean proteins.
Does the Coffee Diet Work?
This is the big question everyone wants answered! On their own, simply drinking three cups of black coffee every day probably won’t be enough to help you lose weight. Coffee contains a lot of antioxidants but not much else, so it won’t provide your body with the nutrition needed to keep you healthy. It’s only when the increased coffee intake is paired with a balanced, reduced-calorie diet free of refined carbs and processed foods that you have a real chance of losing weight.
The Dangers of the Coffee Diet
There are a few risks and potential drawbacks to the diet. First and foremost, there’s the sleep problems that often come from drinking too much coffee too late at night. Heartburn and acid reflux can also result from drinking a lot of coffee, or some people experience digestive irritation or an upset stomach. As mentioned above, if you don’t get enough nutrients in the food you eat, going on the coffee diet could lead to nutritional deficiencies.