Java Joe

by Dr. Daamini Shrivastav

February 19, 2016


  • Pregnant women should avoid coffee and caffeine at all costs for it’ll harm the baby and cause a miscarriage
  • Coffee causes insomnia
  • Caffeine is highly addictive
  • We need coffee to be productive
  • Coffee stunts growth in children
  • Coffee dehydrates the body
  • Coffee helps in fat oxidation and therefore weight loss
  • The cure to any hangover is coffee !


  • Pregnant women CAN in fact consume the beverage safely if they limit their intake to 200mg of caffeine a day (approx. one cup). Also there has been no evidence to show the caffeine results in miscarriages or infertility
  • We’re often told to drink coffee with caution for fear that the caffeine in it will cause insomnia and is highly addictive. But the fact is that our bodies can metabolize coffee quite rapidly and nearly 80% of it is flushed out of our system within 4-8 hours.  Rest easy (pun intended) consuming 2-4 cups of coffee daily.
  • On the addiction front, caffeine is not classified as addictive as withdrawal from it does not result in anti-social behavior and withdrawal symptoms usually resolve in 24-36 hours.
  • A whopping industry of coffee trade, worth billions of dollars, is marketed on the sole notion that coffee is THE potion that will enhance your productivity and efficiency. This in fact is true and caffeine is well recognized in increasing alertness levels and attention spans and improving memory and logical reasoning whilst relaxing the mind and body. BUT, excess of the same stuff blocks production of Adenosine in the body which is a natural stress reliever; a few cups too many and don’t be surprised if you’re jittery and anxious.
  • I remember, often being told as a child that if I drank coffee, I wouldn’t grow as tall. So I drank none till age 16 years and yet I stand short at 5 feet 2 inches. Definitely an old wives’ tale – coffee does not stunt one’s growth and can be consumed in controlled quantities by children.
  • On the contrary, coffee also does not dehydrate the body. Yes it is true that caffeine is a mild diuretic and may make you urinate a tad bit earlier but the water in the beverage itself more than compensates.
  • It would take 35 cups of coffee to lose one pound a day. Caffeine can speed up metabolism, with 100 mgs of it helping to burn an extra 75 to 100 calories a day, but there has been no long-term benefit to weight control demonstrated in any study. One important thing coffee does do is reduce one’s cravings for sugar due to the Magnesium and Potassium it contains.
  • The truth could not be further– caffeine CANNOT reverse the negative cognitive effect of alcohol. It can only increase your alertness which in turn gives the drinker a false sense of security and confidence and The American Psychological Association has warned that this can pose even more dangerous like in situations where the drinker feels competent enough to drive. Also to those of you that swear that coffee has helped cure that hangover from hell, know that coffee takes 15-30 minutes to get into the blood stream so that instant ‘perkiness’ you experience is pure placebo.


  • Coffee contains beneficial antioxidants that fight cancer causing free radicals especially in the case of breast and colon cancer
  • Moderate consumption of the beverage protects against Heart Disease, can lower insulin resistance and the risk of Type 2 Diabetes
  • Coffee further protects the Nervous system and protects against Parkinson’s, Alzheimers, Depression and suicide. Indeed a Harvard study unveiled that two cups a day could prevent suicide risk by 50%. 


  • The flip side is that in excess, coffee has several cons like insomnia, headaches, nervousness, fatigue, irritability and can increase stress levels
  • Coffee overconsumption can severely disrupt the Gastrointestinal system and result in heart burn, ulcers and diarrhea.
  • The antioxidants in coffee when in excess speed up the ageing process through skin wrinkling and sagging
  • Too much coffee is shown to increase the risk of having a Heart Attack

My Take

If the previous article spoke about tea (also see 5 benefits of drinking Green Tea) ,  it’s only but natural to follow that up with possibly one of the greatest loves of my life – Coffee! Oh Coffee, you uplift me like no other. With you, things seem so much brighter and clearer. You are the reason I awake each morning – will you marry me!


I know a lot of you are silently nodding your head upon reading this but, do you really know ‘Joe’? Like did you know that coffee shouldn’t be consumed burning, searing and scalding hot (guilty!)? It’s because boiling water scorches the coffee beans and extracts some of its bitter oils from it giving your beverage a burnt flavor.


There’s definitely a lot more to coffee than the average consumer is aware but hopefully you’ve been forewarned. Go forth forearmed and indulge in this simply fabulously, unique concoction. I for one am still a faithful devotee and believe the aroma brewing from my Coffee Maker every morning is the only thing that can draw me out from under my duvet comfort.



Dr. Daamini Shrivastav


Dr. Daamini Shrivastav

Juggling many roles from physician to writer to pilates instructor to Marketing-PR executive, Dr. Daamini is constantly pushed and inspired to get creative on how to encompass a Retreat into her daily life.
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